A Brief Guide to Illinois DUI Laws

If you or a loved one has been arrested and charged with a DUI, you need to take it very seriously. The laws in Illinois are quite strict when it comes to driving under the influence of alcohol or any other drugs. This post offers an introduction to the various laws and penalties associated with a DUI conviction in Illinois, and will serve to show you why it is so important to fight these charges aggressively.

First Time DUI Conviction

The penalties associated with a DUI are based on a number of factors, including your blood alcohol content at the time of arrest and any past DUI convictions. Even a first time DUI, however, is very serious. The penalties will include the following:

  • Driving Privileges – Your driver’s license will be suspended immediately upon arrest for a DUI, even if you aren’t convicted. If you are convicted, your license will be revoked for a minimum of one year.
  • Financial Penalties– Up to $2500 in penalties to the courts. This is in addition to increased auto-insurance costs (when you get your license back), a variety of fees, and attorney costs.
  • Classes – Most people convicted of a DUI will have to attend drug & alcohol evaluations,  as well as complete a drug and alcohol education program.
  • Community Service – The court typically assigns those who are convicted of a DUI to do a set number of hours of community service.
  • Jail Time – You can face up to 1 year of jail time.

These penalties can go up significantly if your BAC was above .16 or you were transporting a child under the age of 16. Those with a BAC above .16 will have a mandatory minimum of 100 hours of community service and a minimum fine of $500 (though likely much more). If you are transporting someone under the age of 16, the mandatory minimum fine is $1000, and you will likely face 6 months of imprisonment.

Second DUI Conviction

If you have already had a DUI conviction in your past, the second one becomes much more serious. For example, your license will be suspended for 1 year without the possibility of getting a monitoring device permit. For a minimum of 12 months after you regain your driver’s license, you must have a breath alcohol ignition interlock device installed on any vehicle you drive, which is installed at your expense.

Your risk of facing jail time of up to 1 year is significantly increased. There is a mandatory requirement for either 5 days of imprisonment or 240 hours of community service. As with first time offenders, the penalties go up with additional factors. If you are transporting a child under 16, you face 1-3 years imprisonment and fines up to $25,500!

It Keeps Getting Worse

The penalties associated with DUI convictions continue to get more and more severe with each conviction up to your 6th. If you get to this point you will face imprisonment of 6-30 years. Your driver’s license is permanently revoked after your 4th conviction. The financial penalties after your fourth conviction start at a minimum of $5000, though they will likely be significantly higher.

Fight for Your Rights

If you are charged with a DUI, the police and prosecutors will likely try to convince you to simply plead guilty to streamline the system. This, however, is a huge mistake. There are legal defenses that can help you avoid a conviction in many situations, which will not only help you avoid the immediate penalties, but will also keep you from getting multiple convictions in the future. Contact Abdallah Law to speak with an attorney immediately if you or a loved one has been arrested and charged with a DUI in Illinois.

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Abdallah Law

Abdallah Law has been a successful law firm serving the people of Chicago and the surrounding area for years. This success can be attributed to one thing: Our team. At Abdallah Law, protecting our clients’ rights and safeguarding their liberties is the driving force of everything we do.

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