Tag Archives: DUI laws

St. Charles DUI defense attorney

Imagine the following scenario: you decide to have a few drinks at a local bar after work. However, you lose track of time and end up consuming a significant amount of alcohol and staying at the bar much longer than you intended. It is now nighttime, and you are too intoxicated to drive. In a situation like this, you may decide to avoid drunk driving by sleeping in your vehicle and driving home once you have sobered up. However, according to Illinois law, you may be charged with a DUI even if you were not actually driving.

Illinois DUI Law

Section 11-501 of the Illinois Vehicle Code states that it is a criminal offense for a person to drive or be in “actual physical control” of a vehicle when:

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St. Charles criminal defense DUI attorney

In Illinois, it is against the law to operate a vehicle with a blood alcohol content (BAC) of 0.08 percent or higher. During a police stop in which an officer suspects that a person was driving under the influence (DUI), breathalyzers or field sobriety tests may be used to estimate a driver’s BAC. However, a police officer cannot force a driver to submit to a breath test or field sobriety test. Technically, Illinois motorists do have the option to refuse the test. However, doing so may result in several negative consequences.    

Understanding “Implied Consent” in Illinois

Many people do not realize it, but they actually give police officers permission to test their blood alcohol content when they choose to drive on Illinois roads. Illinois law states that drivers give “implied consent” to testing for the purpose of determining the amount of alcohol or drugs in their system. Police officers are permitted to request a breath test or other chemical test if there is probable cause to believe that someone who is in “actual physical control” of a vehicle is under the influence of alcohol or drugs. If a law enforcement officer suspects a motorist of driving while intoxicated, he or she will typically ask the driver to submit to field sobriety tests and/or a breath test. If the driver refuses to take these roadside tests, this refusal may give the officer probable cause to make an arrest. Following the arrest, a driver will be asked to take a breath, blood, or urine test to measure their BAC. The implied consent laws apply to these post-arrest tests, and refusal to submit to this type of testing will result in administrative penalties, in addition to any criminal penalties resulting from a DUI conviction.  

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St. Charles drunk driving defense attorney

The state of Illinois takes drunk driving very seriously. According to the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration (NHTSA), nearly 30 people die as a result of accidents involving an intoxicated driver every day in the United States. In order to dissuade drivers from driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs, Illinois has enacted several penalties for this type of impaired driving. Penalties for second or subsequent DUI are typically much harsher than penalties for a first-time DUI. If you have been arrested and charged with driving under the influence, speak to an experienced DUI attorney to learn about your defense options.

Understanding Illinois DUI Laws

According to Illinois statutes, it is illegal for an individual to drive or be in actual physical control of a vehicle if he or she:

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St. Charles DUI marijuana attorney

If you are like most people, you probably assume that driving under the influence (DUI) only refers to driving while intoxicated from alcohol use. However, this is not the only way that a person can be charged with DUI in Illinois. According to Illinois statutes, it is against the law to drive while under the influence of any drugs or alcohol. Even medical marijuana users or individuals taking prescription medications can be at risk of receiving a DUI if the drug hinders their ability to drive safely.

How Will the Legalization of Marijuana Affect Illinois DUI Laws?

Illinois will soon be the 11th U.S. state to legalize the recreational use of marijuana. House Bill 1438 was signed into law by Illinois Governor JB Pritzker in June 2019, and it will take effect on January 1, 2020. After this date, adults 21 years old or older will be able to legally purchase marijuana, THC-containing edibles, and cannabis concentrate products. However, it is critical for Illinois residents to understand that they are still subject to DUI laws regarding driving under the influence of cannabis even after legalization takes effect. Illinois law prohibits driving under the influence of “any drug or combination of drugs to a degree that renders the person incapable of safely driving.” If you are driving under the influence of marijuana and are stopped by a police officer, you could be arrested for DUI.

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A DUI Conviction in Illinois Can Cost Thousands of DollarsWhat is the cost of being convicted of Driving Under the Influence of alcohol or drugs in Illinois? Before you even consider the effect it will have on your criminal record and reputation, the money you lose after a DUI conviction is significant.

Each year, the Illinois Secretary of State’s Office puts out a DUI Fact Book. Included inside is a chart adding up the various fees and expenses that can result from a DUI conviction. The monetary amounts are only estimates that can vary depending on where you live, but they do give a sense of how the costs can accumulate.

Court Penalties

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