Noah's Law

On October 1, 2016, Governor Hogan signed Senate Bill 945 into law. This law, known as
“Noah’s Law,” was designed to protect Marylander Residents by keeping drunk drivers off the roads. The
law is named in honor of former Montgomery County police officer, Noah Leotta, who was
tragically struck and killed by a drunk driver while working on a DUI special task force in 2015.

Noah’s Law was designed to reduce drunk driving in Maryland. It utilizes stiffened penalties and driving
privilege consequences for those convicted of drunk driving laws in Maryland. From 2011 to
2015, 46.2% of crashes involved impaired drivers. Under Noah’s Law, Marylanders convicted of
a DUI are required to complete the Maryland Ignition Interlock Program and driving suspension
periods have been lengthened.

Maryland Ignition Interlock Program

The Maryland Ignition Interlock Program has drivers install an ignition interlock device to the
engines of their vehicles. Before driving, the convicted driver must blow into a mouthpiece
attached to the interlock device. If the device registers a BAC greater than .025, it will not allow
the vehicle to start. The convicted driver is prohibited, for a period of time, of driving any
vehicle without an interlock device.

The length of time a convicted driver must participate in the program depends on whether the
conviction was a first offense, second offense, or a subsequent offense.

  • First offense: 6 months.
  • Second offense: 1 year.
  • Every subsequent offense: 3 years.

License Suspension Periods

In addition, Noah’s Law significantly increased driver’s license suspension periods imposed on
DUI offenders and drivers who refused to take the breathalyzer test at the request of a police
officer.

  • If you are convicted of a first-offense DUI, your license will now be suspended for 180
    days. It was previously 45-90 days.
  • If you refuse to take a breathalyzer, your license will now be suspended for 270 days. It was previously 120 days.

If eligible, the drunk driver may immediately opt-in to Maryland’s Ignition Interlock Program
instead of serving the suspension period.

PBJ Loophole and Lawmakers’ Current Efforts

While Noah’s Law is one of the toughest DUI statutes in the country, first offenders are getting
around the stiff penalties by getting what is known as a probation before judgment. Since a
probation before judgment is not a conviction, the mandatory ignition interlock requirement is
bypassed.

Mandatory ignition interlock has proven effective in Maryland and other states. Maryland
legislatures have drafted a bill requiring the interlock as a condition of probation. Mothers
Against Drunk Driving (MADD) encouraged Maryland legislatures to pass this proposed
legislation. Five other states already require the interlock as a condition of probation.
If you face drunk driving charges, consult an experienced DUI Attorney.

The consequences of a drunk driving offense can be severe. Noah’s Law has made these
consequences even more extreme. The personal ramifications can impact your career and your
daily transportation. Losing your license and having a DUI conviction in your criminal record
can cause hardships.

We are here to help. In the aftermath of a DUI or DWI arrest, you should
contact Ruben Law at 410-766-4044 or david@rubenlaw.com. Our experienced legal team will
be able to assist you. Not every case is defensible, but it is our responsibility to reduce the
seriousness of the charges and the potential consequences imposed by the MVA and the
judiciary. Schedule a free consultation so we can review your case with you and the potential
charges, MVA consequences, and potential criminal penalties.

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