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How Does a High BAC Impact DUI Sentencing in Illinois?

 Posted on August 23,2021 in DUI

Will County DUI Defense LawyerIn Illinois and most other states, the legal blood alcohol concentration (BAC) limit for drivers is 0.08. Though it is possible to be charged with a DUI with a lower BAC if there is other evidence of intoxication, it becomes more difficult to fight a charge when chemical test results show a BAC of 0.08 or above. However, you may be wondering what happens if you are charged with DUI and your BAC registered at much higher than 0.08.

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), a driver’s abilities can become significantly more impaired as their BAC increases. At a BAC of 0.15, a driver can experience vomiting and major loss of muscle control and balance, which can make a serious accident much more likely. Illinois aims to curb highly-intoxicated driving behavior by enforcing stricter penalties for drivers who are convicted of DUI with a BAC of at least twice the legal limit, or 0.16.

Increased Penalties for Excessive BAC

In many Illinois DUI cases, the court has some discretion in the sentencing of an offender, allowing a judge to enforce fines, imprisonment, and other consequences according to the specific circumstances. However, when chemical test results indicate a BAC of at least 0.16, mandatory minimum sentencing requirements apply. The specific consequences depend on how many prior DUI convictions the offender has. For example:

  • A first-time offender who has a BAC of 0.16 or above will be assessed a mandatory fine of $500 and at least 100 hours of community service.

  • A second-time offender who has a BAC of 0.16 will be subject to two days of mandatory imprisonment, and the mandatory minimum fine increases to $1,250.

  • For a third offense, a BAC of 0.16 or higher results in a mandatory imprisonment sentence of 90 days and a mandatory fine of $2,500.

  • Fourth and subsequent offenses include a mandatory fine of $5,000 when the offender has a BAC of at least 0.16.

It is important to note that these mandatory penalties for a high BAC are assessed in addition to any other terms of the sentence.

One benefit of hiring an experienced DUI defense attorney is that they can look into the circumstances of your BAC test to determine whether there may have been faulty equipment, an error in administering the test, or other factors that may have influenced the test results. If your attorney can demonstrate that the test results are unreliable, you may be able to avoid these excessive penalties or avoid being convicted altogether.

Contact a Naperville DUI Defense Lawyer

If you have been charged with a DUI, it is important to pursue all available defense strategies. At the Law Office of Patricia Magaña, LLC, we can help you do so and ensure that your rights are protected. For a free initial consultation, contact our Will County DUI defense attorney at 630-448-2001 today. Se habla español.






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