ILLINOIS HAS SOME OF THE TOUGHEST DUI LAWS IN THE COUNTRY
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Illinois prohibits driving with a .08 percent BAC or above. When you drink and drive in Illinois, you risk your freedom, finances, and your future.
A DUI HAS TWO SEPARATE AND DISTINCT COMPONENTS:
1. Criminal - Guilt or Innocence of DUI offense
Guilt (or innocence) in any case is determined by a judge, jury, or by negotiation of the parties (with court approval). Penalties for DUI in Illinois vary depending on the circumstances of the arrest and conviction. These circumstances may include the driver’s age, the driver’s BAC level, whether the driver was transporting a child under age 16, whether there was an accident, and whether the driver has previous DUI convictions.
Further, if you are under 21 years of age in Illinois there is a "Zero" tolerance for alcohol and driving. If you are convicted for DUI, the first offense will result in a minimum 1-year suspension of your driver's license. In addition, you may be imprisoned for up to one year and fined up to $2,500.
2. Civil - Statutory Summary Suspension
Every person charged with DUI on a public highway is subject to a statutory summary suspension. The implied consent law in Illinois requires that any person that drives in the State of Illinois agrees to submit to a chemical test of their urine, blood, or breath. Failing a chemical test (blowing over .08) or refusal to submit to a chemical test will result in a summary suspension from 6 months to 3 years, depending on the circumstances. Drivers may request a timely hearing to contest the suspension. A suspension or revocation is in addition to any criminal penalties imposed in the DUI case. This is true even if the DUI is ultimately dismissed.
PLEASE BE ADVISED: Summary Suspensions are automatic and go into effect 46 days from the date of the stop. DO NOT DRIVE - ESPECIALLY TO COURT - AFTER YOUR SUSPENSION HAS GONE INTO EFFECT! DOING SO WILL RESULT IN ADDITIONAL CRIMINAL PENALTIES INCLUDING A MANDATORY 10 DAYS IN JAIL OR 240 HOURS OF COMMUNITY SERVICE. (The mandatory minimum punishment for a second offense of driving on a DUI suspension requires 30 days in jail or 300
hours of community service).
Effective July 1, 2011: If a driver refuses to submit to chemical testing after being involved in a crash in which a serious injury or death occurred, his/her driving privileges will be revoked for a minimum of 1 year.
If a commercial driver’s license holder receives a statutory summary suspension, his/her CDL privileges will be disqualified for one year for a first offense; a lifetime disqualification applies for a second offense.
First offenders (those who have not been sentenced for DUI or received a statutory summary suspension within 5 years) are eligible for driving relief from the Secretary of State. Drivers charged with DUI will automatically receive an application for MDDP (Monitoring Device Driving Permit) in the mail. You should fill out the application and send it back as soon as possible so that you receive the MDDP permit and can have the BAIID device installed in your vehicle before your suspension goes into effect. First offenders who fail chemical testing are subject to a 6-month suspension. First offenders who refuse chemical testing are subject to a 12-month suspension. Both are eligible for MDDP. Non-first offenders are subject to suspension for 1-3 years and are NOT eligible for MDDP.
The differences between a DUI charge and a Statutory Summary Suspension are great and could have a significant impact on your driving privileges. Therefore, it is important to contact a lawyer as soon as possible to make sure your rights are protected and to request a hearing on the summary suspension, if necessary, BEFORE the suspension goes into effect.
PENALTIES FOR DUI