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DuPage County CDL violations attorneyThe more a truck weighs, the more damage the truck could potentially cause in an accident. Extremely heavy vehicles can also cause damage to roadways. Consequently, Illinois state law limits how much cargo a commercial truck such as a semi-truck can haul.

While the reasons for weight limitations are generally sound, the consequences of operating an overweight commercial vehicle can feel exorbitant. If the truck is found to be overweight – carrying more cargo than allowed by law – then the driver and his or her company can face significant fines. Depending on how far the truck is over its legal weight limit, the truck driver may even be required to unload some of its cargo in order to remain compliant.

Penalties for Exceeding Truck Weight Limitations

In Illinois, the fine associated with an overweight truck depends on how much the truck and cargo weigh above the limit. For example, operating a truck that exceeds the weight limitation by 2,000 lbs. is only a $100 fine, but the fine increases the heavier the truck and cargo are. Trucks that exceed the weight limitation by 5,001 lbs. or more are fined $1,500 at minimum. There are also additional fines for companies that receive four or more overweight violations within a one-year period.

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Kane County license reinstatement lawyerWith the new year comes multiple new laws and regulations in Illinois. One of the most significant pieces of legislation is the most recent amendment to the Illinois is the Safety, Accountability, Fairness and Equity-Today (SAFE-T Act). Among many other important provisions, the Act limits when the state may suspend a person’s driver’s license.

Changes Being Implemented to Illinois Driver’s License Suspension Laws

In Illinois, a person's driver's license can be suspended for many different reasons. Driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol, having too many driving violations or points on their license, and being involved in a hit-and-run accident are some of the most common reasons for suspension. The length of time a license is suspended varies depending on the violation but can range from six months to several years. During a period of suspension, it is illegal to drive and doing so can result in serious consequences, such as an extended suspension or even jail time.

The SAFE-T Act reduces the circumstances in which a person may have their license suspended. As of January 1, 2023, an individual can no longer face license suspension for:

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Will County DUI Defense AttorneyField sobriety tests are standard tests used to measure an individual’s balance, coordination, and cognitive abilities. They are usually administered by law enforcement officers to determine if a person is under the influence of alcohol or drugs. Despite their widespread use, field sobriety tests have come under question in recent years for their accuracy in determining intoxication.

If you or a loved one are facing charges for driving under the influence (DUI) after failing a field sobriety test, contact a DUI defense lawyer for help.

Common Field Sobriety Tests

The three main types of field sobriety tests are the walk-and-turn test, the one-leg stand test, and the horizontal gaze nystagmus (HGN) test.

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Kane County Traffic Ticket LawyerThe term “reckless driving” is often used casually to refer to driving behavior that is unsafe or unpredictable. However, reckless driving has a specific definition under Illinois law and individuals convicted of reckless driving can face serious criminal penalties. If you or a loved one were arrested for reckless driving, it is important to get started on a defense strategy right away. Reach out to an experienced criminal defense lawyer who can help you understand your options and take the steps necessary to reduce your chances of conviction.  

Illinois Law Regarding Reckless Driving

The law specifically mentions two instances in which a driver may be charged with reckless driving. Intentionally driving a vehicle up a ramp or incline, such as a railroad crossing, to make the vehicle airborne is reckless driving. Reckless driving also includes any driving behavior that shows a “willful and wanton disregard for the safety of people or property.” This can include drag racing or excessive speeding, tailgating, weaving in and out of lanes, running stop signals, braking abruptly, or other types of erratic driving.

Penalties for Reckless Driving

Reckless driving is typically considered a Class A misdemeanor. When someone is arrested for reckless driving, his or her vehicle may be impounded, and he or she may be taken to jail and required to post bond. Class A misdemeanors are punishable by up to $2,500 in fines and up to a year in jail in Illinois. The penalties for reckless driving are much more severe when someone is injured or killed as a result of a motorist’s reckless driving. If injury or death results from reckless driving, the charge may be elevated to aggravated reckless driving which is a Class 4 felony punishable by a maximum prison sentence of three years. Aggravated reckless driving resulting in serious injury or death of a child is a Class 3 felony punishable by a maximum prison sentence of five years.

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Will County Criminal Defense AttorneyIf your driver's license was revoked because of a DUI or other reason, you will need to attend a hearing through the Secretary of State in order to have it reinstated. There are both formal and informal reinstatement hearings. If this is your first DUI or your license was revoked because of a minor moving violation, you will most likely attend an informal hearing. It is important to prepare for your hearing and take all of the steps required by the Illinois Secretary of State. Your driving privileges depend on it.

Informal Driver's License Hearings in Illinois

An informal driver's license reinstatement hearing takes place at a Secretary of State facility. You do not need to schedule the hearing in advance as these hearings take place on a first-come, first-served basis. During the hearing, you will be asked a series of questions by a hearing officer. The hearing officer may ask you about the reasons your license was revoked, your criminal history, and the lifestyle changes you have made to avoid reoffending. The hearing officer will make a recommendation to the Secretary of State, and then a final decision will be handed down.

Preparing For Your Informal Hearing

Although the word "informal" may imply otherwise, an informal Secretary of State hearing is still a serious matter you will need to prepare for in advance. Showing up to the hearing unprepared will significantly decrease your chances of getting your driver's license back. The steps you need to take before the hearing depend on the circumstances of the offense and the results of your drug and alcohol evaluation. For example, if you are classified as "minimal risk," you must complete 10 hours of Substance Use Prevention and Recovery classes. If you are classified as high-risk dependant, you will need to complete 75 hours of substance abuse treatment and participate in a continuing care program. Make sure you have all the documentation needed to prove your completion of the required steps. It may also be a good idea to practice what you will say to the hearing officer in advance, so you are as articulate as possible. Dress appropriately and treat the hearing officer and other individuals at the hearing with respect.

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1555 Bond Street, Suite 103A, Naperville, IL 60563

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