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Archive for the ‘DUI news’ Category

Rolling Meadows Man With Multiple DUIs Faces 30 Year Prison Sentence

May 25th, 2018 at 5:08 pm

Class X felony, DUI news, DUI penalties, multiple DUIs, Rolling Meadows defense attorneyA Rolling Meadows man with 15 driving under the influence (DUI) convictions faces 30 years in prison. The DUI convictions date all the way back to 1982. These convictions take place over 36 years and have occurred in 10 Illinois counties. 

The man’s latest DUI charge occurred in June 2017 when he struck a party bus while intoxicated and driving. For the 15 convictions, he has served 15 years, five months, and eight days in prison, with sentences ranging from one year to 7 years, according to the Daily Herald.

After the man’s most recent DUI charge, the defendant was forbidden to drive. In fact, the state of Illinois took away his license years ago because of the numerous DUI charges. Regardless, the defendant still got behind the wheel of a car and drove while intoxicated. The judge let the defendant out on bail after the 2017 DUI charge.

In March of 2018, the defendant was charged with driving without a license after driving to the scene of an accident to aid his wife. The defendant claimed his wife was in a car accident and he only drove to the scene to help her. Even with the intentions of helping his wife, the judge revoked bail.

The defendant is facing a Class X DUI felony charge. This is a charge that is reserved only for defendants who have six or more DUI convictions. The Class X felony carries a maximum prison sentence of 30 years and a potential fine of $25,000.

Illinois DUI Penalties

According to Illinois law, it is illegal to operate a motor vehicle with a blood alcohol concentration of 0.08 or more. DUI charges are divided into classes, depending on the severity of the charge. Multiple DUI charges and convictions result in harsher sentences.

DUIs can be both a misdemeanor or a felony charge. Misdemeanor charges result in the smallest punishments, and felony charge punishments are more severe.

  • Class A Misdemeanor: The first and second DUI convictions are considered Class A misdemeanors. They carry the potential for fines, short jail sentences, and license suspension.
  • Class 2 Felony: A third or fourth conviction is a Class 2 felony. Along with fines, prison time, and probation, there is a mandatory suspension of license or even lifetime revocation of driving privileges.
  • Class 1 Felony: A fifth conviction is considered a Class 1 felony. This results in both suspension of driving privileges for life and suspension of vehicle registration, in addition to potential prison time, fines, and probation.
  • Class X Felony: A Class X felony occurs after the sixth, and any subsequent DUIs. It carries the strictest penalties of up to 30 years in prison.

Contact Us Today for Help

A DUI charge is a serious matter. You need an aggressive attorney who is equipped to defend you and get the best results possible. Skilled Rolling Meadows DUI defense attorney Christopher M. Cosley is ready and able to defend you. Do not let a charge derail your future; contact us today for a consultation.

Sources:

http://www.ilga.gov/legislation/ilcs/fulltext.asp?DocName=062500050K11-501

https://cyberdriveillinois.com/publications/pdf_publications/dsd_a118.pdf

http://www.dailyherald.com/news/20180424/man-has-15-dui-convictions-now-he-faces-30-years-in-prison

What is an Aggravated DUI?

March 12th, 2018 at 3:39 pm

aggravated DUI, DUI charge, felony DUI, Illinois automobile insurance, Rolling Meadows criminal defense attorneysIn Illinois, the more a person is charged with driving under the influence (DUI), the harsher the penalties get. The different types of DUI charges that are possible in Illinois are outlined in 625 ILCS 5/11-501.

A DUI can be classified as both a felony and misdemeanor. An aggravated DUI is a felony DUI. You can be charged with a felony DUI, even if it is your first DUI arrest or charge.

Proving an aggravated DUI is the same as proving a misdemeanor. The prosecutor must show that the defendant broke a law in some way, most often driving with a blood alcohol content of more than 0.08 percent.

In addition to proving a violation of law, there are 11 circumstances that can elevate a misdemeanor DUI to an aggravated DUI. The following are the circumstances that make a DUI a felony:

  • The charge is the 3rd or subsequent DUI charge. A DUI arrest will always be a felony if you have two or more prior DUI convictions;
  • Driving a school bus with children under the age of 18 on board;
  • Driving under the influence that results in a car accident with a victim who suffers permanent disability to great bodily harm. This injury must be caused because you were driving under the influence;
  • Having a reckless homicide conviction on your record because of intoxication or impairment;
  • Having an accident in a school zone where another person suffered bodily harm;
  • The DUI being the proximate cause of death of another;
  • Being arrested for a DUI while having a suspended or revoked license. The suspended or revoked license must be the result of a prior DUI, statutory suspension, or reckless homicide.
  • Not having a valid license at the time of the DUI offense;
  • Driving a car that you know is not insured;
  • Being the proximate cause of bodily harm to a child; and
  • Committing a DUI with a passenger that is under the age of 16 and you already have another DUI.

How Serious is an Aggravated DUI?

Any kind of DUI conviction can be detrimental to you and your family, but an aggravated DUI can create many more problems. A misdemeanor DUI has a maximum sentence of less than one year. A felony offense can carry a much higher jail or prison sentence. A felony DUI carries a prison sentence of one year or more. In addition, there is a maximum fine of $25,000.

Reach Out to an Attorney for Help

If you are facing criminal charges, you should contact an attorney immediately. Choose an attorney with the experience and skill to represent you. The Law Offices of Christopher M. Cosley can defend you zealously in an aggravated DUI case. Our Rolling Meadows criminal defense attorney can provide an effective defense. Contact us today for a free consultation.

Source:

http://www.ilga.gov/legislation/ilcs/fulltext.asp?DocName=062500050K11-501

Governor Signs New DUI Law

October 16th, 2017 at 6:35 am

Conor's Law, criminal DUI charges, drunk driving, new DUI law, Rolling Meadows DUI attorneysThe Governor of Illinois signed a new piece of legislation into law that alters the way police handle an arrest of someone under the age of 21 who is suspected of being intoxicated.

Senate Bill 2185, most commonly referred to as “Conor’s Law” requires that when a police officer arrests someone showing signs of being intoxicated who is under the age of 21, he or she must make a reasonable attempt to contact a responsible adult who can take custody of the individual. If police cannot locate a parent, guardian, family member, or friend, the arrested individual has the right take a breathalyzer test or other chemical test to prove that he or she is below the legal limit of 0.08. The results of these tests are now prohibited from being used in a prosecution against the person placed under arrest.

The new law, which goes into effect in June 2018, enables police to detain someone under the age of 21 until he or she sobers up or, as mentioned, police can locate a responsible adult to come pick up the individual, according to WAND17.

Conor’s Law also exempts police officers from criminal and civil liability if they acted in good faith when determining whether to detain or discharge the individual or to allow a responsible adult to take the individual into protective custody.

Rationale Behind the New Law

This new DUI law is named after Conor Vesper, a 20-year-old Blackburn College student who took his own life after being placed under arrest for alleged drunk driving.

Prior to the passage of Conor’s Law, anyone placed under arrest for driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol in the state could be released on their own recognizance once he or she posted bond.

At the bill signing, the Governor of Illinois emphasized the importance of protecting impaired young individuals while they are in a mental and emotional state that places them at risk of making a reckless and dangerous decision, according to Fox 55 Illinois. The goal is to try and prevent another tragedy similar to Conor Vesper’s passing.

Rolling Meadows DUI Defense Attorney is Here to Help

If you or your child is facing criminal DUI charges, do not lose hope or assume that will be found guilty. The skilled Rolling Meadows DUI attorneys at The Law Offices of Christopher M. Cosley is here to help and understands the complexities of Illinois’ DUI laws. Our legal team possesses extensive experience representing people facing serious DUI charges. We work tirelessly on your behalf to try and build a compelling defense that will challenge the government’s supposed evidence against you and raise a reasonable doubt sufficient to convince a jury that you should not be convicted of the charges. Contact our office right away to schedule a confidential case review.

Sources:

http://www.wandtv.com/story/36458081/conors-law-could-make-changes-to-certain-arresting-procedures

http://foxillinois.com/news/local/new-dui-law-signed-we-pray-that-we-are-continuing-conors-work-09-26-2017

DUI Testing in Illinois

September 11th, 2017 at 9:53 am

breathalyzer test, DUI testing, field sobriety tests, local DUI attorney, Rolling Meadows DUI defense attorneyWhen a police officer pulls you over on suspicion of driving under the influence in Illinois, he or she will likely ask to see your license and registration, ask if you have been drinking, and, if he or she still suspects that you are intoxicated, administer one or more of the field sobriety tests described below.

Field Sobriety Tests

Field sobriety tests are simple tests that police officers administer on the side of the road after pulling a driver over in order to predict blood alcohol concentrations of 0.08 and above. Approved standardized field sobriety tests in Illinois include:

  • The Horizontal Gaze Nystagmus: To administer this test the officer asks the driver to follow the tip of his or her pen or finger with only his or her eyes. During this test the officer is looking to see whether the driver is experiencing nystagmus, an involuntary jerking of the eye that is magnified when a person consumes alcohol or certain other drugs.
  • The Walk-and-Turn: During this test the officer asks the driver to walk in a straight line by placing one foot in front of the other, heel to toe, heel to toe, and so forth nine times, turn, and walk back on the line in the same manner. All steps are taken while keeping one’s arms at his or her sides.
  • The One-Legged Stand: Here the officer tells the driver to stand with one’s arms at his or her sides, raise one foot approximately six inches off the ground, and balance on one leg for 30 seconds.

Additionally, a police officer in Illinois can also administer a breathalyzer test on the side of the road in order to measure the amount of alcohol on a driver’s breath. A breathalyzer is a device that gives a very accurate estimate of the amount of alcohol present in the blood of the person who blows into it. However, it is important to note that the only way to actually test someone’s blood alcohol concentration is via a blood test, which police officers do not administer on the side of the road but do conduct at the station after arresting a driver for driving under the influence.

Drivers in Illinois implicitly consent to submitting to a breathalyzer test when asked to do so by virtue of driving in our state. Therefore, refusing a roadside breathalyzer test can carry steep consequences such as having your license suspended.

Accused of Driving Under the Influence? Contact a Local DUI Attorney

Any accusation of driving under the influence in Illinois should be taken very seriously as the penalties available for first-time DUI convictions can include up to one year of incarceration, a fine of up to $2,500, a license suspension of up to six months, and various other penalties as well. At The Law Offices of Christopher M. Cosley our experienced Rolling Meadows DUI defense attorneys are well aware of the huge toll that a DUI conviction can take on a person’s life. Therefore, we work tirelessly to provide excellent legal representation to each and every one of our clients.

Source:

https://www.cyberdriveillinois.com/publications/pdf_publications/dsd_a118.pdf

Aggravated DUIs in Illinois

July 24th, 2017 at 7:05 am

aggravated DUIs, DUI convictions, DUI defendants, DUI violation, Rolling Meadows aggravated DUI lawyersAll driving under the influence (DUI) convictions are serious offenses. But, in the eyes of the law, an offender who is caught driving while impaired by drugs or alcohol under certain extreme circumstances is seen as being as being more morally culpable than others, and can therefore be charged with the elevated offense of aggravated driving under the influence (also referred to as felony DUI).

Each state defines aggravated driving under the influence a bit differently. However, here in Illinois, felony driving under the influence is codified under code section 625 ILCS 5/11-501 and, in a nutshell, states that an individual commits an aggravated DUI when he or she is in actual physical control of a vehicle in Illinois while under the influence of alcohol, drugs, intoxicating compounds, or a combination thereof, and any of the following aggravating factors were present:

  • This is the offender’s third or more DUI offense;
  • The offender was driving a school bus with at least one passenger aboard;
  • The offender was involved in an accident resulting in great bodily harm, permanent disability, or disfigurement to another (when driving under the influence was the proximate cause of the injury);
  • The offender was previously convicted of reckless homicide while under the influence of alcohol, drugs, or intoxicating compounds;
  • The offender was driving in a 20 mph school zone and was involved in an accident resulting in bodily harm (when driving under the influence was the proximate cause of the injury);
  • The offender was involved in a motor vehicle, all-terrain vehicle, snowmobile, or watercraft accident resulting in the death of another (when driving under the influence was the proximate cause of the injury);
  • The offender was driving with a revoked or suspended license;
  • The offender did not possess a driver’s license or permit;
  • The offender knew, or should have known, that the vehicle they were operating was not covered by a liability insurance policy;
  • The offender was in an accident while transporting a child under the age of 16 who sustained bodily harm (when driving under the influence was the proximate cause of the injury);
  • The offender has at least one prior DUI violation and was transporting a child under the age of 16; or
  • The offender was transporting at least one passenger in a vehicle for hire.

Common Defenses

In order to be convicted of aggravated driving under the influence in Illinois the prosecution must be able to prove that you (1) violated IL’s driving under the influence statute and (2) did so while one or more of the aggravating factors outlined above were present. Therefore, depending on the facts of your particular case of your case, you may be able to assert one or more of the following commonly asserted defenses:

  • The arresting officer lacked reasonable suspicion to stop me;
  • The field sobriety test(s) administered in my case were in some way defective or improperly administered;
  • The arresting officer violated my Miranda Rights;
  • My blood alcohol concentration was rising at the time of my arrest and was actually below the legal limit while I was driving; or
  • None of the aggravating factors listed under code section 625 ILCS 5/11-501 were present at the time of my alleged DUI.

Need Legal Advice? Contact a Local DUI Lawyer

Although DUI defendants are not legally required to retain legal representation, hiring a competent driving under the influence attorney to defend your legal rights is highly recommended, especially if you are facing an aggravated DUI. Here at the Law Offices of Christopher M. Cosley, our experienced Rolling Meadows aggravated DUI lawyers, led by former lead prosecutor in the DUI division of the IL state courts Chris Cosley, assist clients charged with driving under the influence throughout Chicago and the surrounding suburbs.

Source:

http://www.ilga.gov/legislation/ilcs/documents/062500050K11-501.htm

DUI and Driverless Cars

May 17th, 2017 at 7:27 am

driverless cars, Rolling Meadows DUI Defense AttorneyWith technology becoming more of an integral part in our vehicles, the prospect of having our roadways dominated by self-driving cars is inching closer to reality. It is not hard to identify the perks of driverless cars. Fewer accidents and less road rage incidents are what some autonomous car designers are pointing to with their investors.

One major issue developers are hoping for is that driverless cars will help solve, if not eradicate, the issue of drunk driving. In theory, one would be able get into his or her self-driving car, push some buttons, and have his or her car deliver the individual safely to his or her destination.

Yet one of the looming questions about whether a person in a driverless car is operating the vehicle for the purposes of a DUI law is the question of who is actually in control.

Autopilot or No Pilot?

One of the first instances of a fatal car accident involving a driverless car was the case where a man was killed inside of an autonomous Tesla. The individual had the car on autopilot when the accident happened. Tesla pointed to the fact that even though the car was in autopilot mode, the driver was still required to have his or her hands on the steering wheel and was responsible for the trajectory of the car.

The legal question then becomes, when a car is on autopilot who is controlling the car? Is the liability and or responsibility that of the manufacturer of the software or the driver who gave the car the directions of where to go?

DUI Law and Physical Control

DUI laws across the nation generally have one factor in common: laws require a person to be in actual physical control of a vehicle for him or her to be guilty of a DUI. This can present a legal paradox. Currently, if a police officer sees a car swerving erratically, there is little question with regard to who is in control of the car. Yet how will the same play out when a driver insists a car was driving itself?

Although autonomous vehicles are still a relatively new design, with little legal precedent set as of yet, it is not likely that the “car was doing the driving,” excuse is going to get you out of hot water.

Rolling Meadows DUI Defense

If you or a loved one has been charged with a DUI, please understand the seriousness of the charge. A DUI conviction can land you in jail, get your license suspended, or prevent you from getting certain professional licenses. Contact your Rolling Meadows DUI defense attorney at the Law Offices of Christopher M. Cosley to schedule your consultation. Call 847-394-3200 today.

Sources:

https://www.nytimes.com/2016/07/02/business/joshua-brown-technology-enthusiast-tested-the-limits-of-his-tesla.html

https://www.isp.state.il.us/traffic/drnkdriving.cfm

Law Against Driving While High On Marijuana Changed

September 15th, 2016 at 1:24 pm

Law Against Driving While High On Marijuana ChangedUntil recently, it was illegal to drive while under the influence of marijuana, regardless of how much marijuana was in your system. Illinois law used to employ a zero tolerance approach when it came to driving under the influence of marijuana. Specifically, if any amount of marijuana was detected in the suspected drugged driver’s system, the driver could be charged with a marijuana DUI. But the recent passage of Illinois bill SB2228 changes things and puts a measurable limit on when an Illinois driver is too high to drive.

Under the old law, prosecutors were not required to demonstrate that the driver was actually intoxicated by marijuana at the time of their DUI arrest, according to a recent article in the Pekin Daily Times. Instead, the prosecution only had to show that marijuana, even in trace amounts, was detected in the driver’s system. A blood test could be used to analyze a blood sample for any trace of THC, which is the active psychoactive chemical ingredient in marijuana.

A Zero Tolerance Policy Is Patently Unfair

The old law was strikingly unfair since it failed to require proof that the driver was actually under the influence of marijuana to such a degree that the intoxication impacted the driver’s ability to safely operate a vehicle. The old law could place a person who was merely in contact with marijuana smoke in violation of the state’s marijuana DUI laws, even though the person never actually inhaled more than second-hand marijuana smoke.

New Law Offers Measurable Legal Limit

The new law places a quantifiable measurement on when a person is considered to be under the influence of marijuana to such a degree that their driving ability is affected. Specifically, a person who has five nanograms of THC in their blood, when the blood sample is taken within two hours of a DUI arrest, is considered to be under the influence of marijuana and is not safe to drive a vehicle. With the enactment of the new marijuana DUI law, Illinois joins just four other states – Colorado, Nevada, Oregon, and Washington – that have placed a measurable impairment level on marijuana.

Bill SB2228 Also Decriminalizes Possession of Small Quantities of Marijuana

The new law also decriminalizes possession of small quantities of marijuana. Instead of being a criminal offense, possession of less than 10 grams of marijuana is punishable as a civil infraction, meaning that offenders will merely be issued a ticket. The ticket ranges from between a fine of $100 and $200.

Facing A DUI? Contact A Rolling Meadows Drug Offenses Lawyer

Whether you are facing a DUI, a marijuana DUI, or drug charges, you need to speak to an experienced Rolling Meadows drug crimes lawyer as soon as feasible about your situation. These criminal charges are serious, and you need legal representation that can help you fight the charges that are pending against you.

Sources:

http://www.ilga.gov/legislation/BillStatus.asp?DocNum=2228&GAID=13&DocTypeID=SB&SessionID=88&GA=99
http://www.pekintimes.com/news/20160804/marijuana-dui-law-changed-little-attorney-warns

Illinois Law Enforcement Receive Federal Grant to Identify Drugged Drivers

June 3rd, 2016 at 7:40 am

Illinois identify drugged drivers, Rolling Meadows Criminal Defense AttorneyDriving under the influence of drugs is illegal under Illinois law. A person is considered to be under the influence of drugs if his or her ability to drive safely is impacted by the drug use. Under Illinois’ zero tolerance policy when it comes to drugged driving, even a trace amount of drugs found in a driver’s blood, breath or urine, is sufficient to prompt criminal DUI charges. These laws apply to all drugs that are identified in:

  • Illinois Cannabis Control Act under 720 ILCS 550;
  • Illinois Controlled Substances Act under 720 ILCS 570;
  • Use of Intoxicating Compounds Act 720 ILCS 690; and
  • Methamphetamine Control and Community Protection Act under 720 ILCS 646.

The list of drugs covered by the above statutes include all kinds of drugs and controlled substances, such as marijuana, heroin, cocaine, methamphetamines, MDMA, and other popular drugs.

Reasonable Suspicion to Make an Arrest for Drugged Driving

In order to make an arrest for drugged driving, the law enforcement officer must have a reasonable suspicion that the driver is operating a vehicle while under the influence of drugs. No actual evidence of the drugged driving is required for the arrest to be made. However, law enforcement in Illinois is not as familiar with the signs and indications that a driver is under the influence of drugs, and the federal government wants to help change that.

According to KFVS12.com, Illinois is one of just four states in the country that was awarded federal grant money to help law enforcement identify signs of drug intoxication in drivers that have been pulled over or stopped. The Governor’s Highway Safety Association and the Foundation for Advancing Alcohol Responsibility gave Illinois Department of Transportation grant money that will fund 10 Advanced Roadside Impaired Driving Enforcement classes to law enforcement agencies across Illinois. Each class will educate up to 25 law enforcement officers on how to identify signs that a driver is under the influence of a drug.

DUI and Drug Testing

In Illinois, if you are suspected of driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol, you are required to submit to testing under the state’s implied consent laws. Under the implied consent laws, by merely using the public highways of Illinois, drivers consent to submit to chemical tests, or blood or urine testing, for determining whether a driver is operating a vehicle while under the influence of drugs or alcohol. Law enforcement officers get to choose which type of testing is administered.

You have the right to refuse chemical and blood or urine testing, but there are consequences for doing so. Two main consequences exist when a driver refuses to submit to testing:

  1. Your driver’s license will be revoked and suspended.
  2. Your refusal can be used as evidence against you later in court.

Contacting a Rolling Meadows DUI Lawyer

A conviction for driving under the influence of drugs will leave you facing DUI penalties. It is important to work with an experienced drug offenses and DUI lawyer in order to fight the charges that are pending against you. Please do not hesitate to contact a Rolling Meadows criminal defense attorney at our office. We will assist you throughout each step of your case.

http://www.ilga.gov/legislation/ilcs/fulltext.asp?DocName=062500050K11-501

http://www.kfvs12.com/story/31867100/illinois-awarded-grant-to-combat-drug-impaired-driving

New Law Could Let People With Four DUI Convictions Get Restricted Driving Privileges

November 17th, 2015 at 2:48 pm

Illinois drunk driving attorney, Illinois defense attorney, Illinois criminal lawyer,One of the consequences of being convicted for driving under the influence is that your driver’s license will be revoked. Under the current laws of Illinois, it is illegal to drive a motor vehicle while under the influence of drugs, alcohol, or a combination of both. Upon conviction, a person will lose their driver’s license; more specifically, the Secretary of State will revoke their driving privileges.

The revocation period depends on the number of prior offenses:

  • For a first offense, license revocation is for a period of one year, and for those under the age of 21, revocation is for two years;
  • For a second offense committed in a period of 20 years, license revocation is for a period of and years;
  • For a third offense, license revocation is for a period of 10 years; and
  • For a fourth any subsequent offenses, license revocation is for life.

Needless to say, being convicted of a DUI seriously impacts a person’s life by taking away their ability to drive.

New Law Changes Driver’s License Revocation for Fourth DUI Offense

A new state law, referred to as House Bill 1446 or Public Act 099-0290, will be taking effect on January 1, 2016 and will allow individuals in Illinois who have been convicted of four DUIs to be able to apply for a restricted driving permit after completing five years of their revocation period.

In order to be eligible for the restricted driving permit under the new law, the applicant must demonstrate by clear and convincing evidence:

  1. That he or she has experienced a minimum of three years of uninterrupted sobriety from drugs, alcohol, or both; and
  2. That he or she has successfully completed a rehabilitative program or activity recommended by a licensed service provider.

While it is always a good legal strategy to fight a DUI charge that is pending against you so that you are not convicted of the DUI, if you ultimately are convicted, it is also important that you pursue the options available to you to get your driver’s license reinstated as soon as possible.

Under the new law, four-time DUI convictions can become eligible for an administrative hearing to request reinstatement of their driving privileges from the Illinois Secretary of State. In the alternative, these individuals can seek to obtain a restricted driving permit, which can be obtained for the purpose of transporting either yourself or a family member for certain reasons or purposes, including getting to and from work, school, substance abuse rehabilitative services or programs, for obtaining medical care and attending doctor’s appointments, or for getting children to daycare.

Call the Law Offices of Christopher M. Cosley

Getting a first, second, third or subsequent DUI is a matter that can not be taken lightly. Your rights and your freedom are at stake. Consult with an experienced DUI criminal defense attorney about what options are available to you and whether you can get your driving privileges reinstated sooner rather than later. Please contact a skilled Rolling Meadows DUI attorney immediately. Call the Law Offices of Christopher M. Cosley at (847) 394-3200 for assistance.

 

Sources:

http://www.ilga.gov/legislation/ilcs/fulltext.asp?DocName=062500050K11-501

http://www.ilga.gov/legislation/publicacts/99/099-0290.htm

Illinois May Ditch the Hard Suspension of Licenses after a DUI Arrest

March 23rd, 2015 at 6:53 pm

Illinois criminal defense attorney, Illinois defense lawyer, criminal penalties, Driving under the influence, or “DUI” is a criminal charge that carries with it a host of possible consequences. People who have been injured by intoxicated drivers or who have lost family members in car accidents often advocate for extremely harsh punishment for people caught driving under the influence. Surprisingly, however, even many of these advocates are on board with getting rid of the “hard time” 30-day suspension of the person’s driver’s license that accompanies a DUI arrest in Illinois.

What is a Hard Suspension?

A hard suspension of a person’s driver’s license is a suspension with no exceptions. During a hard suspension a driver is not allowed to drive at all. This is opposed to a suspension where the driver is only allowed to drive under certain circumstances, such as being required to use an ignition interlock device. These are the devices that can be installed in cars that require the driver to blow into them to prove they are not intoxicated in order to operate the vehicle. Hard suspensions prevent drivers from driving to work, taking their children to school, going to alcohol treatment, or fulfilling any of a whole variety of basic life functions. While people who live in certain parts of Chicago may have reliable enough public transportation to do all of these things without driving, those living in the suburbs or in rural parts of the state can lose jobs and support networks. If the goal is to prevent future alcohol abuse and encourage treatment, hard suspensions work against that goal. Yet under current Illinois law, there is a mandatory 30-day hard suspension that follows a DUI arrest.

Movement to Eliminate the Automatic Hard Suspension

The Chicago Tribune reports that the Illinois State Bar Association has proposed ending the mandate that people arrested for DUI completely lose their driver’s licenses for at least 30 days, and Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD) is supporting the move; as is a local group called “Alliance Against Intoxicated Motorists.” What is the catch? Drivers would be able to get out of the 30-day suspension if they agreed to use an ignition interlock device whenever they drove during the suspension period. This would allow them to go to work, treatment, and other places they need to be while still keeping the community safe. It would also encourage the use of the ignition interlock device, preventing the drivers from drinking and driving on a suspended license. Both the drivers and the community win.

Call the Law Offices of Christopher M. Cosley

If you have been cited for driving under the influence, you need an experienced Rolling Meadows DUI attorney. That is why you should call the Law Offices of Christopher M. Cosley. We handle these unique cases regularly and can provide you with the representation you deserve. Reach out to us at (847)394-3200.

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