Penalties You Can Face for Traffic Violations in Illinois
Every offense has its potential penalties. Serious crimes like homicide and aggravated assault have steep penalties that include long prison terms. But even smaller offenses like noise violations and traffic violations have consequences for the individuals who commit them. In fact, many individuals do not realize the gravity of the penalties they can face for traffic violations, especially ones that put others’ lives in danger.
If you are charged with a traffic violation, you have the right to contest it. With certain violations, the cost of fighting the charge can outweigh the cost of simply paying the ticket. With others, fighting the charge can mean keeping one’s driver’s license and even avoiding jail time. Whether you choose to fight a traffic violation is your decision. To fight it is your right.
Fines are the most common penalty for traffic violations in Illinois. They can range from $120 for a minor speeding ticket to up to $25,000 for aggravated reckless driving.
Fines are not the same as surcharges. Surcharges are additional costs imposed by the court for the use of its time and services. In addition to fines and surcharges, drivers with traffic violations on their records are also subject to increased automobile insurance premiums.
Driver’s License Suspension or Revocation
For egregious traffic violations, a driver can have his or her driver’s license suspended. He or she can also face a driver’s license suspension for accruing three or more traffic violation convictions within a 12-month period. The length of this suspension depends on the number of points on the driver’s record, with higher point values correlated with longer suspensions. Points are “awarded” to drivers according to the severity of their convictions. Over time, points are removed from a driver’s license.
A driver’s license suspension is the loss of one’s driving privilege for a specified period of time. A revocation is the permanent loss of a driver’s license, though a driver can apply to have his or her license reinstated after a revocation. This requires an administrative hearing and a passing score on the Illinois driver’s license exam.
Jail time is a possibility following certain traffic violation convictions, such as driving under the influence (DUI). What many do not realize is that it can also follow seemingly less severe convictions, like driving 26 miles per hour or more over the posted speed limit.
Work with an Experienced Naperville Traffic Violation Lawyer
Never dismiss a traffic violation citation as “just a ticket.” That ticket could cost you a lot of money, not just in fines but in the court surcharges and increased insurance premiums you will need to pay in the years that follow. A point-bearing traffic violation can also push you toward a driver’s license suspension or be the direct cause of one. Defend your case against a traffic violation charge by working with an experienced Naperville criminal defense lawyer. Contact Law Office of Glenn M. Sowa, LLC today to schedule your initial legal consultation in our office.