Illinois DUI Laws Some of the Strictest in the Nation

blood alchol content, BAC, Illinois criminal defense lawyer, Illinois DUI attorney, State law in Illinois is extremely aggressive in its prosecution of drivers who operate a moving vehicle while under the influence of alcohol or drugs. In addition to a zero-tolerance per se driving law for cannabis, drivers are considered impaired if blood-alcohol level is .08 percent or higher. Illinois DUI laws also gives discretion to the apprehending officer to cite drivers for the same if blood alcohol is over .05 percent, but the penalties for drunk driving are not automatically triggered and depend on the decision of a court case (or plea deal).

Statutory Summary Suspension

Per Illinois DUI laws, drivers tested roadside with a blood-alcohol level (BAC) over .08 percent or who refuse testing at the scene will have their driver’s licenses immediately suspended. Drivers will then have 45 days to fight this in court. After that time, if still pending, the suspension is automatically triggered for six months. Those who fail chemical testing will have their driver’s licenses suspended for six months, although DUI laws allow for year-long suspensions which can be imposed for refusal to submit to chemical testing. The full range of DUI penalties depend upon whether it was a first-time offense, or factors such as whether or not bodily harm occurred as a result of the intoxication.

Penalties for first and second DUI offenses are listed below.

First DUI

  • Minimum of one-year suspension of driving privileges
  • Possible imprisonment for up to one year
  • Maximum fine of $2,500

Second DUI

  • Minimum five-year loss of driving privileges
  • Mandatory five days imprisonment or 240 hours community service
  • Possible imprisonment for up to one year
  • Maximum Fine of $2,500

A third DUI conviction is automatically considered a Class 2 felony and results in a minimum 10-year loss of driving privileges. An aggravated DUI (following a crash where bodily harm occurred) is also considered a Class 4 felony. Commercial drivers face even stricter penalties and additional alcohol offenses involving minors, illegal transportation or knowingly allowing an impaired driver behind the wheel also exist in the state.

Automatic Ignition Interlock Devices Required

Illinois DUI laws also require that drivers convicted of even a first-time offense are required to install a Breath Alcohol Ignition Interlock Device (BAIID) in their vehicles and pay for the installation, monthly rental, and monitoring fees.

Retain An Illinois Attorney Immediately for Help with Your Case

It is critical to contact a highly qualified Chicago criminal defense attorney if you have been charged with driving under the influence. Reach out to the Law Offices of Hal M. Garfinkel LLC, Chicago Criminal Defense Attorney today for a consultation on your case and to learn how we can be of help. We can examine the specifics of your case, and decide upon an appropriate course of action to proceed.

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