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DuPage County DUI LawyerYou may be aware that if you are convicted of driving under the influence (DUI) in Illinois, your driver’s license will be revoked for at least a year. However, it is also possible to lose your driving privileges for a time even before your criminal case is resolved. Illinois drivers who are arrested and charged with DUI can be issued an automatic statutory summary suspension of their license if they fail or refuse a chemical test designed to detect the presence of alcohol and other controlled substances. If you have been arrested, here are some important things to understand about a statutory summary suspension.

Refusing a Test Results in a Longer Suspension Than Failing a Test

Illinois has an implied consent law that requires drivers who are arrested for DUI to submit to a chemical test. If you refuse the test, you face a statutory summary suspension of 12 months for a first offense. On the other hand, if you submit to the test and fail, meaning you are found to have a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of at least 0.08, a THC concentration of at least 5 nanograms per milliliter of blood, or any amount of illegal drugs in your system, you will face a suspension of only six months for a first offense.

You Have the Right to Challenge a Suspension

Once you have been notified of a pending statutory summary suspension, you have 45 days before the suspension takes effect. However, within 90 days of your notice date, you can request a judicial hearing to contest the suspension. An attorney can represent you at this hearing to help you make the case that the suspension should be dismissed, perhaps because of impropriety in your arrest or the administration of the chemical test.

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IL DUI lawyerA vast amount of people in the United States require their own form of transportation to maintain their livelihood and continue their daily routine. Driving, however, is a privilege and that privilege can get taken away under certain circumstances. Fortunately, this privilege can also be reinstated if you take the right steps. If your driver’s license has been revoked due to an offense involving multiple DUI charges or a fatality, you will need to attend a formal hearing with the Secretary of State (SOS) to reinstate your license.

What to Expect Prior to the Formal Hearing

To have a successful administrative hearing, there are several steps you must take before the hearing takes place. First, a written request must be mailed in, including a $50 filing fee. Any emailed or faxed requests will not be acknowledged. The request must include various personal information, including the petitioner’s full name, current address, and social security number. These requests are accepted 90 days after the most recent hearing. Once the request and fee are received, the hearing will be scheduled.

The petitioner may now take the time to adequately prepare for the hearing. If the petitioner does not feel entirely prepared, it is recommended that you notify the SOS’s office in writing at least five days before to withdraw your request. This will allow you to forgo the required 90 day wait period in between hearings.

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How Can I Get Out of a DUI in Illinois?

Posted on in DUI

IL defense lawyerIn Illinois, being arrested and charged with driving under the influence of alcohol can lead to a range of criminal consequences and administrative penalties. Most first-time DUIs are punishable by fines up to $2,500, community service, a six-month driver’s license suspension, and mandatory alcohol education classes. Second and subsequent DUIs or DUIs involving aggravating circumstances are punished more harshly. Some DUI offenses can even lead to lengthy jail sentences. If you have been charged with drunk driving in Illinois, it is crucial that you work with a skilled DUI defense lawyer.

Possible Defenses Against DUI Charges

If you have been arrested and charged with a DUI, you are facing serious penalties and a permanent criminal record. However, it is important to remember that being charged with DUI is not the same thing as being convicted of DUI. In Illinois, criminal charges including drunk driving charges must be proven beyond a reasonable doubt. There are many different defenses that may be used to weaken the prosecution’s case against you, including:

  • Lack of probable cause for the traffic stop – Police cannot simply pull someone over for no reason. To initiate a traffic stop, police must have “probable cause.” There must be sufficient evidence to suggest that the driver is committing some type of crime or traffic violation. Speeding, running a red light, drifting between lanes, and erratic driving may all constitute probable cause. However, if police cannot prove that they had a good reason to pull you over, any evidence gathered during the police stop may be inadmissible in your DUI proceedings.
  • Problems with field sobriety tests - Horizontal gaze nystagmus tests, walk and turn tests, and other field sobriety tests are often used by police to evaluate a driver for signs of intoxication. However, many factors cause causes these tests to be inaccurate. Injuries, medical conditions, and even nerves can cause a sober person to fail these tests.
  • Inaccurate BAC readings – Breath alcohol tests such as breathalyzer tests are designed to measure a person’s blood alcohol concentration (BAC). However, if the test is not properly maintained, cleaned, and calibrated, it will yield an inaccurate result. Even things like using mouthwash prior to the test or belching can lead to inaccurate results.

Contact a Naperville DUI Defense Lawyer

If you or a loved one were charged with driving under the influence, contact Aurora defense attorney Patricia Magaña for help building a robust defense against the charges. Call the Law Office of Patricia Magaña, LLC at 630-448-2001 for a free, confidential consultation.

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IL defense lawyerAs teenagers and young adults experience the freedom of having a driver’s license, many find themselves in situations that involve drinking and driving. For individuals under the age of 21, being convicted of a DUI can lead to very serious consequences, including criminal penalties and the loss of driving privileges. If you or your child find yourself in this situation, it is important to discuss your case with a skilled DUI defense lawyer. Fluent in English and Spanish, Attorney Patricia Magaña has over 15 years of legal experience helping clients minimize or eliminate the negative consequences of a DUI charge.

Zero Tolerance Law

In the state of Illinois, individuals of all ages may be charged with a DUI. If a driver under the age of 21 is found with alcohol in his or her system, he or she is subject to lose their right to operate a motor vehicle. Upon a police stop, if the officer has reason to believe that the motorist has any trace of alcohol in their system, that officer has the right to request a chemical test. After the test is administered, the officer must submit a sworn statement to the Secretary of State’s office, which will then lead to the suspension of the motorist’s license. If the motorist refuses to submit to testing, his or her driving privileges will be suspended.

If a driver under the age of 21 has a BAC of more than .00, his or her driving privileges will face a three-month suspension for the first offense. A second offense will result in a one-year suspension of driving privileges. If the motorist refuses to take the BAC test, that individual’s first violation will result in a six-month suspension of driving privileges. A two-year suspension will be enforced for a second violation.

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IL DUI lawyerIf you are convicted of driving under the influence in Illinois, a number of factors will determine the sentence you serve. One of the biggest factors the court will consider is your criminal history and whether you have previous DUIs on your record. If you do have previous DUI convictions on your records, the court may consider how long it has been between convictions.

Many states place a lookback period on DUI cases and that timeframe is typically five to ten years. If a conviction occurred before the lookback period, the courts cannot consider it. After being charged with a DUI, you may wonder if Illinois has a lookback period if you have prior convictions. Unfortunately, Illinois does not have such a law on the books.

Prior DUI Convictions Matter in Illinois

Due to the fact that Illinois does not have a lookback period for DUIs, any prior conviction of a DUI can be considered when a judge is determining a sentence for a subsequent offense. DUI convictions, like all traffic violation convictions, are also permanent, which means the prosecution can seek a harsher penalty for you even if your last DUI was over ten years ago.

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Law Office of Patricia Magaña, LLC

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

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