February 21, 2020

Illinois Laws on Driving Under the Influence

Driving an automobile while under the influence of alcohol or drugs is a very serious crime in the state of Illinois. Judges have little mercy and prosecutors also have little latitude in adjusting the charges in most cases. Alcohol intoxication level can be evaluated using an accepted electronic measuring device, and even a breathalyzer administered in a field sobriety test could justify an officer requesting an electronic BAC evaluation. And, refusing to submit to the test can make the situation worse even when there is no apparent impairment. The state is serious about stopping impaired driving, and it is always a necessity because a jail term could be assigned. It is always best to first consult with experienced Arlington Heights DUI attorney like Geocaris Law Firm who can ensure all rights to a defense are observed by the court.

First Offense

While some states will usually impose minimal punishment for the first offense in a standard DUI case, Illinois courts can evaluate the case according to material evidence and suggest punishment accordingly. This means that even a first offense can result in jail time and a substantial fine in cases of extreme BAC level or when an intoxicated driver is in an accident. Additional criminal charges can apply as well when there is serious injury. The .08 per se limit is imposed for a conviction with .16 being the level for aggravated circumstance charges. License suspension following a conviction is set at one year.

Multiple Offenses

The second or third convictions for DUI are established at the same intoxication levels in subsequent DUI cases, but license suspension periods jump to five years for a second conviction and 10 years for a third. Fines are increased as well, and a fourth conviction for DUI can result in felony charges that carry a minimum of one year in jail along with enhanced fines and additional license suspension time.

DUI cases in Illinois are always serious legal issues, and a conviction can impact a defendant for many years following the fact. Call an experienced Arlington Heights DUI attorney at Geocaris Law Firm for comprehensive representation.