What Happens to First Offenders in the State of Illinois?
The state of Illinois imposes stringent prosecution for all DUI charges, with a minimum charge of a Class A misdemeanor. Make no mistake however as a first time DUI offense will end up costing the convicted of up to $2500 in fines and incarceration of up to one year in jail. First time offenders can be charged with felony DUI if the defendant causes severe bodily harm to victims.
An initial DUI conviction will merit license revocation of up to one year and once sentenced, offenders will be required to attend and complete the programs, be evaluated by an alcohol abuse councilor and be ordered to render community service all within the discretion of a Judge not withstanding jail sentence and other court appointed fees. The BAC qualifier for a DUI related arrest is at .08 % minimum and the presence of any or both alcohol and impairing drugs in an offenders system while operating a motor vehicle.
Once suspected of a DUI a first time offender’s license can be automatically suspended for three months pending litigation. Upon questioning, an officer will seize your license and provide you with a temporary driving receipt which will allow you a 45 day driving window. The suspension terms are initiated on the 46th date upon the arrest date and are not co-terminus with the expulsion of prosecution without the payment of a reinstatement fee and not until records are updated. Although there are hard pressed stipulations and protocol for DUI arrests, first time offenders can be deemed by courts for “supervision” which is not equivalent for a conviction.
In the state of Illinois, you don’t need to be driving to be arrested and charged for a DUI count. The law clearly states that anyone who is in actual physical control of a motor vehicle, suspect of alcohol consumption beyond the legal limit can be tried for a DUI charge.
Offenders who are under the age of 21, convicted of a DUI charge (non-felony charge) are mandated by a judge, as part of a probation arrangement to attend and complete a program called the Youth Intoxicated Drivers Visitation Program. This includes an extensive counseling curriculum before a convicted minor is afforded visitation to evaluate the impact of the program to the offender. Once the counselor has approved your visitation, you will be escorted to a DUI location to review the results of a DUI crash. Offenders convicted below the age of 18 are court ordered to successfully complete a re-education course before driving rights are restored, as well as retaking a driver’s license exam.
All licenses are revoked b the Secretary of State for a minimum of two years upon conviction of a DUI for a minor. The Secretary of state has the option to provide a restricted license a year after the revocation but under no conditions if the offender is below the age of 16. RDP’s are only usable from 5:00 AM to 9:00 PM or as stipulated in the RDP clause. Minors can be fined up to $250, and depending on a Judge allotted jail time of no more than one year.
DUI Laws in Illinois
According to the National Transportation Safety Administration, Illinois has one of the “best” DUI laws in the nation. There is little doubt that Illinois has one of the “toughest” DUI laws in the nation. There is no doubt that Illinois has one of the “most complex” DUI laws in the nation. In 2019, over 50,000 citizens had their licenses suspended or revoked based upon the State’s DUI laws. Many provisions of the laws are skewed against the driver and in favor of the prosecution of citizens for driving under the influence. As a result, it is essential that citizens be informed of their fundamental rights while driving.
Driving after consuming alcohol is a perfectly lawful act – unless you are impaired – or have blood alcohol content above a relatively precise legally defined limit.
You may have questions if you are stopped by law enforcement after you have consumed alcohol and are driving a vehicle – Why are you being stopped? Did you violate the law by drinking a bit too much? Are you going to be able to continue driving, or are you going to be taken to jail? What is going to happen to your car? Is there a way to get out of this? If you are cooperative with the officer, will he let you go? What do you say to the officer? Do you have to answer all of the officer’s questions? Do you have to perform field sobriety tests? Will your statements and field sobriety test performance be used only by the officer or will they be used against you in court? All of these and other questions will confront you very quickly. In order not to be confused, you need to know and remember your basic rights.
The Illinois Vehicle Code makes it a crime for anyone to operate any vehicle while under the influence of alcohol, drugs, or anything else that can make a person intoxicated. About alcohol, the bright-line rule of the law is that anyone whose blood alcohol level or breath alcohol level is 0.08 or above is prohibited from driving.
Under this rule, a vehicle is any device that transports people or things from one place to another, with the exception of devices moved entirely by human power, and snowmobiles, which have their own specific Safety Code. As a result, this code includes all-terrain vehicles, motorcycles, cars, all other highway vehicles that utilize a motor, and, through association of the Illinois Boat Registration and Safety Act, boats.
The methods of testing for blood alcohol level are blood, urine, and, most commonly, breath. A blood test must be administered by a doctor, nurse, paramedic, or other qualified medical personnel. A breath test must be operated by a person that is licensed to do so, though police are generally authorized to conduct such an analysis.
DUI Penalties Illinois
A person convicted of Driving Under the Influence for the first time is generally guilty of a Class A misdemeanor, which could result in a sentence of up to __ days in prison, though less than this is the usually administered punishment. A person committing the crime a second time must, in addition to the misdemeanor penalties, spend at least five days in prison or must perform at least 240 hours of community service.
Penalties for the crime can increase if the person has a blood-alcohol level of over .16, which is two times the legal limit. A first time offender with a .16 alcohol concentration faces a minimum 100 hours community service and a $500 fine, which is in addition to any punishment for the Class A misdemeanor. A second-time offender whose blood content is over .16 on the second offense must, in addition to the Class A misdemeanor penalties, face at least two days in prison and a minimum $1,250 fine.
Drunk Drivers with child passengers face stricter penalties. A driver transporting children under the age of 16 can face six months in prison, must pay an additional $1000 fine, and must serve 25 hours community service in programs that benefit youths.
Any driver convicted of the crime for the third time or more faces a charge of aggravated driving under the influence. Aggravated driving under the influence is a felony, making the punishment for such offenses more drastic. Other examples of aggravated driving under the influence are when the driver, in addition to driving under the influence, is operating a school bus, speeding in a school zone, involved in an accident causing significant injury to someone or driving without a license.
Although an arresting officer can request someone to take a test to determine whether they are driving under the influence of alcohol or other substances, the person is allowed to refuse such a test. If a person refuses such a test, the officer is entitled to report the refusal, which will be submitted and can lead to the suspension of driving privileges for six months.
Get DUI Help: Repeat Offenses for DUI Arrests
Repeat offenders, be subject to heavier criminal and administrative penalties and are discretionary to the judgment of the court and may not be clearly stated in this document because each case is affected by a different circumstance and degree of DUI arrest. As more mitigating circumstances and repeat offenses are presented, the sentencing becomes more unhindered.
Since the state enforces a looking window policy, earlier conviction which are DUI-related from your parent or Illinois bordering states are considered when booking a suspect for current the current DUI charge. The chastisement for a repeat DUI lawbreaker with associated property damage or accidents that lead to bodily harm and worse, death will be subject to the maximum form of prosecution, where the court is likely to sentence defendants under criminal charges. Suspects are charged with Felony DUI which has a broader sentencing definition.
Hire an experienced Illinois DUI Attorney
The most important aspect of your defense is hiring a law firm that has a deep understanding of the DUI laws that govern conviction, plea bargaining, appeal and sentencing for the state. There are reputable law firms with an established practice that will make a significant difference in the outcome of your DUI charge. You can contact DUI lawyers either by phone or online. The first consultation is completely confidential and is normally free of charge.