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Archive for the ‘Illinois traffic offenses’ tag

Why Should I Contact an Attorney if I Get a Traffic Ticket?

May 7th, 2018 at 7:00 am

Illinois traffic offenses, Rolling Meadows traffic defense attorney, traffic ticket, traffic violation, traffic violation consequencesYou may not think that a traffic ticket is a big deal, that they happen every day, and that you do not need an attorney if you receive one. This is simply not true. While there are “minor” traffic violations, like running a stop sign or improperly changing lanes, there are still consequences for even the smallest ticket. Hiring an attorney can help you avoid these consequences and keep your driving record clean.

Provide Experience  

When you fight a ticket yourself, you are relying on your own experience. If this is your first traffic ticket, or the first time that you are fighting a traffic ticket, you may not know exactly what to do. Even if this is not your first ticket, you likely do not have the same experience that an attorney has in traffic court. An attorney knows the law well and knows how to challenge the validity of a traffic ticket.

Avoid Unforeseen Consequences

Depending on the violation for which you received the ticket, the penalties can greatly vary. A traffic ticket can result in anything from a minor fee to a license suspension. In Illinois, traffic convictions result in points added to an individual’s driving record. Each violation carries a number of points. In turn, there are consequences of having a significant number of points on your record.

For traffic tickets that involve speeding, disobeying stop lights, improper lane changes, and other minor violations, points will remain on your record for four to five years. If you receive a traffic ticket that causes your license to be suspended or revoked, points will remain on your record for a minimum of seven years.

Accumulating a massive amount of points can even lead to license suspension or revocation. Suddenly, those minor speeding tickets can lead to devastating consequences.

Save Money

Yes, hiring a lawyer costs money. In some instances, you might not think that it is worth the cost to hire an attorney to fight a ticket with a low fee and low point value. However, in the long run, an attorney can save you money. For tickets with higher fees or more severe consequences, an attorney can fight to get the ticket dismissed, which would thus result in no additional fees for you or points to your driving record. Paying for an attorney at the outset might seem like an additional expense, but the rewards and benefits you could ream from the attorney’s work will outweigh the cost of hiring.

Contact Us Today for Help

If you have received a traffic ticket and are wondering if you need an attorney, contact The Law Offices of Christopher M. Cosley. A talented Rolling Meadows traffic defense attorney at our office will answer your questions and help you decide the best option moving forward in your case.

Sources:

http://www.ilga.gov/commission/jcar/admincode/092/092010400000200R.html

https://www.cyberdriveillinois.com/publications/pdf_publications/dsd_dc19.pdf

When Can the Police Search My Vehicle?

April 26th, 2018 at 9:53 am

Illinois traffic offenses, Illinois traffic stops, police search, Rolling Meadows criminal defense attorney, searches and seizuresThe Fourth Amendment to the United States Constitution grants us the right be free from unreasonable searches and seizures. Searches are scrutinized to make sure that an individual’s constitutional rights are not infringed upon.

There are numerous cases in which a person is pulled over for a seemingly routine traffic stop, but it results in the search of the individual’s car and a potential arrest if illegal behavior or substances are found. However, a police officer does not always have the right to search your vehicle at just any traffic spot.

Ultimately, if you have been stopped by the police and placed under arrest, it is in your best interests to contact an attorney immediately. To be sure, an experienced lawyer can examine the specifics of your case and begin mounting an aggressive defense.

Valid Police Search of Your Vehicle

There are various scenarios in which a police officer has the right to search your vehicle, as described below. This is not an exhaustive list of circumstances, but these are the most common instances that arise and result in a legal search of your vehicle.

  • Consent. If you consent to a search, the police are able to search your vehicle. After you give consent, any evidence that is found during the search will be admissible in future court proceedings.
  • Probable Cause.  In order for the police to search your vehicle during a traffic stop, the police need to have probable cause that there is some sort of criminal activity happening. For example, if the police smell marijuana, they are able to search the vehicle for the substance. Police are able to bring drug sniffing dogs to smell the area around your vehicle; however, they must not excessively prolong the traffic stop.
  • Incident to an Arrest. If you are arrested, the police generally have the right to search your vehicle. Indeed, you are already being arrested for a potentially valid reason, and the police may need to conduct further investigation. The police can search for weapons and any evidence that is incident to the arrest.
  • With a Search Warrant. Since traffic stops are spur-of-the-moment events, police likely will not have a warrant to search your vehicle. However, if you are under suspicion for a crime and a judge grants a search warrant for your vehicle, a police officer will be able to search your vehicle.

If there is not a legitimate reason to pull a vehicle over, then the results of that traffic stop are not valid.  Any evidence seized or found during an illegal search is inadmissible in court.

Let Us Help You Today

If you have been charged with any criminal offense, contact The Law Offices of Christopher M. Cosley today. An experienced Rolling Meadows criminal defense attorney at our office is equipped and ready to tackle your case and make sure you receive the justice you deserve.

Source:

http://www.uscourts.gov/about-federal-courts/educational-resources/about-educational-outreach/activity-resources/what-does-0

Aggravated Speeding: What You Need to Know

February 12th, 2018 at 9:21 am

aggravated speeding, aggravated speeding conviction, Illinois traffic offenses, speeding charges, Class A misdemeanorMany people drive a little fast every now and then. For instance, the car in front of you may be going too fast and you simply keep up with the flow of traffic. Or, perhaps you are running late for work and you need to speed up to get there on time. Perhaps you have a sports car and enjoy going fast.

Drivers can be pulled over for going 10, 15 and 20 mph over the speed limit. In these cases, the only punishment is a speeding ticket. You will have to pay the fine as well as take traffic school if you want to avoid insurance premium increases.

However, if you are caught going 26 mph or more above the speed limit, you will face hefty penalties. Going a few miles above the speed limit is one thing, but driving at an excessive speed is considered reckless. This is called aggravated speeding.

What is Aggravated Speeding?

Under 625 ILCS 5/11-601.5, aggravated speeding occurs when a person drives a vehicle at a speed that exceeds the speed limit by 26 mph or more. A person who drives 26-34 mph above the speed limit will face a Class B misdemeanor, while a person exceeding the speed limit by 35 mph or more will face a Class A misdemeanor. This is the most serious type of misdemeanor, and it is one step away from a felony.

Penalties for Aggravated Speeding

A Class B misdemeanor is punishable by six months in jail and a $1,500 fine. A Class A misdemeanor means up to one year in jail and a fine of up to $2,500. The penalties increase when the speeding occurs in a school or construction zone.

An aggravated speeding conviction stays on your record for seven years. Unless you have your record sealed, such a charge will stay on your criminal record for the rest of your life.

Court supervision may be an option for those facing aggravated speeding charges. If you have never faced such a charge previously, you may be able to complete court supervision and keep the charge from appearing on your driving record. The terms of your supervision may include fines, community service, and traffic school.

Let Us Help You with Your Case

Speeding is typically an infraction that involves a ticket, fines, and traffic school. However, excessive speeding can result in a criminal record. Do not let a single speeding incident affect your life.

If you are facing misdemeanor charges for a speeding ticket, you need solid legal defense to avoid fines and jail time. Get help from the Law Offices of Christopher M. Cosley. Talented Rolling Meadows criminal defense attorney Christopher Cosley has helped many clients who have been accused of driving at a speed exceeding the speed limit by 26 mph or more. Contact us today for professional help.

Sources:

http://www.ilga.gov/legislation/ilcs/documents/062500050K11-601.5.htm

https://www.isba.org/sections/trafficlaw/newsletter/2015/06/excessiveaggravatedspeeding

Illinois Drag Racing Laws and Consequences

February 9th, 2018 at 8:56 am

Class 4 felony, drag racing, Illinois license revocation, Illinois traffic offenses, street racingTV shows such as “Street Outlaws” make drag racing seem like fun and games. Two tricked-out cars go head to head in a race to see which one is faster. The drivers often bet money and whoever loses pays the winner.

Drag racers take their cars to the limit. They may travel at speeds exceeding 100 mph on city streets. Other drivers and pedestrians can end up seriously injured or even killed by the negligence of drag racers.

Not only is drag racing dangerous, it is also illegal. Drag racing is typically charged as a misdemeanor, but it can be a felony in some instances. 

Illinois Drag Racing Laws

Drag racing, also known as street racing, is considered illegal on all streets and highways in Illinois under Illinois law 625 ILCS 5/11-506. Drag racing is defined as the operation of at least two vehicles side by side traveling at high speeds that are trying to outdistance each other. It also involves one or more vehicles attempting to outdistance another, reach a destination before another, or prevent another vehicle from passing. Drag racing may also be referred to as a test of a driver’s stamina or physical endurance. The race may also occur over a common course.

Drag racing is considered a Class A misdemeanor, which is punishable by a $2,500 fine and up to one year in jail. It is also against the law to allow another person to use your vehicle for street racing. This is considered a Class B misdemeanor, which is punishable by a $1,500 fine and 180 days in jail.

There are situations in which drag racing can be a felony. Aggravated drag racing is defined as drag racing that causes a motor vehicle accident that leads to serious injury, disfigurement, or death. This is classified as a Class 4 felony, with punishment of 1-12 years in prison. A second offense of drag racing will also become a felony charge.

All drag racing convictions will also lead to license revocation or suspension for at least one year. To get your license reinstated, you will need to appear before a hearing office.

Contact Us Today for Professional Help

Drag racing may seem like an innocent act, especially late at night when the roads are deserted. However, drag racing can lead to crashes, serious injury, and even death. At the very least, you could face fines, jail time, and license loss.

If you are facing misdemeanor charges for drag racing or some other speeding offense, you could face jail time and fines. The Law Offices of Christopher M. Cosley can help reduce your charges. Skilled Rolling Meadows criminal defense attorney Christopher Cosley can help you avoid serious penalties.

Source:

http://www.ilga.gov/legislation/ilcs/fulltext.asp?DocName=062500050K11-506

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