DUI Attorney in Central Illinois
Legal Defense for Drunk Driving Charges in Springfield, Bloomington, Peoria, and Surrounding Areas
Law enforcement officers in Central Illinois do not fill their cells and records with arrests for theft, assault, drug crimes, and other serious offenses. Instead, the most prevalent criminal violation is driving under the influence (DUI). At Johnson Law Group, our Illinois DUI lawyers recognize the importance of defending people from harsh drunk driving charges, either by fighting to have the case dropped altogether or minimizing the sentencing so that it does not take away your driving privileges.
Illinois DUI Penalties
DUIs are a common offense, but don’t let that mislead you into believing the penalties aren’t serious. A DUI conviction can carry long-term consequences that seriously disrupt your life.
Legal and administrative penalties tied to DUI convictions include:
- High fines paid to state
- Time spent in jail
- Mandatory ignition interlock device installment
- License suspension or revocation
On the surface, the aforementioned penalties may seem manageable but most people do not realize just how much they rely on their vehicle until they are legally restricted from driving it. Small tasks like picking up groceries or bringing your kids to school can become big headaches as you arrange rides and call in favors. Employment opportunities may become few and far between as you find that you can only feasibly work at locations within walking distance. The trouble with a DUI conviction is, in fact, large-scale, even if you have a spotless driving and criminal record.
Underage DUI in Illinois
In the state of Illinois, adults must be 21-years-old or older in order to consume alcohol. While it is illegal to drink and drive at any age, individuals that are under 21 are held to a zero-tolerance policy. This means that if an individual is caught with even a 0.01% BAC that individual can be charged with a DUI.
First Offense Underage DUI
According to the Illinois State Police, a first underage DUI conviction can result in a loss of full driving privileges for at least two years and possible imprisonment for up to one year. Individuals that are charged with this crime also face a $2,500 fine if convicted.
Second Offense Underage DUI
When an underage drinker is caught drinking and driving for the second time, the courts will impose a minimum five-year driving privilege suspension and a mandatory five days of imprisonment or 240 hours of community service. Individuals can also be imprisoned for up to seven years and can be forced to pay a maximum fine of $25,000.
Third Offense Underage DUI
If an individual is apprehended for the third time of an underage DUI, then he or she will lose all driving privileges for ten years and will be forced to serve 18 to 30 months of periodic imprisonment. The imprisonment can last up to seven years and can come with a maximum fine of $25,000.
How Do You Beat a DUI Case in Illinois?
You are innocent until prosecutors prove you are guilty beyond a reasonable doubt if you have been charged with driving under the influence in Central Illinois. In order to beat a drunk driving charge, you must be able to identify legal flaws or doubts about the evidence against you. Many DUI defenses can be used to fight a DUI charge, including police report errors, medical conditions, and inaccurate breathalyzer tests.
Inaccurate Field Sobriety Tests
Field sobriety tests are usually administered by police officers to determine whether or not a person is driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs. The reliability of these tests has been proven by numerous studies, however. It is possible to fail a field sobriety test due to several factors, such as wearing restrictive clothing or ill-fitting footwear, poor weather conditions, and being overweight.
How to Get a DUI off Your Record in Illinois
Depending on the circumstances in your case, you may have to go through a legal process to remove a DUI from your record in Illinois. It is possible to expunge a criminal record through an expungement procedure, which allows certain offenses to be removed. It is important to note, however, that DUI cases are often challenging, and not every case will be eligible for expungement.
Expungement eligibility is typically based on the specific charge, the outcome of the case, and the individual's criminal history. In Illinois, expungement is more likely for DUI cases that result in acquittal, dismissal, or certain types of probation.
It's crucial to consult with an experienced Central Illinois DUI attorney to assess your eligibility for expungement. We can guide you through the process, helping gather the necessary documentation and file the appropriate petitions with the court. Clearing a DUI from your record involves intricate legal procedures, and having an experienced attorney is crucial for navigating Illinois laws, enhancing the likelihood of a positive resolution.
Call Illinois DUI Lawyers Today for a Free Consultation
In the event that you have already been convicted of a DUI and had your license suspended, you will need to schedule a reinstatement hearing just to get it back. The hearing is more showing up, asking to have your license reinstated, and then walking out with it in hand. You actually will need to convince the administrative judge that you deserve to have your license reinstated. For this reason, and many more, it is highly recommended by both legal professionals and the Illinois Department of Motor Vehicles that you attend this hearing with one of our Central Illinois DUI attorneys by your side.
Johnson Law Group also represents clients throughout several counties in Illinois including Tazewell, Woodford, Piatt, Livingston, DeWitt, Logan, and Ford.
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