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What You Need to Know About Driving With a Suspended License in Illinois

Posted on in Driver's License

McHenry County suspended driver's license defense lawyerMany people believe that driving on a suspended or revoked license is a petty offense or traffic violation, punishable with perhaps a fine, or something equally minor. In reality, Illinois law characterizes it as a standard criminal offense, meaning that if you are charged with this crime, you may face both fines and jail time. If you drive with a suspended license after you have been convicted of driving under the influence (DUI), the consequences can be even more severe because you have already shown that you have a disregard for others’ safety. Enlisting an experienced attorney for your case is crucial. 

Reasons for an Illinois Driver’s License Suspension

There are many reasons that an Illinois driver’s license could be suspended, including failing to appear in traffic court, failing to pay child support, and being convicted of three moving violations in a 12-month period. Depending on the severity of the traffic violations, your license could even be revoked after multiple offenses in a short time.

License suspension and revocation are also common consequences related to a DUI arrest or conviction. For example, if you fail a breathalyzer test at the time of your arrest, you will face an immediate suspension of your license for at least six months. Refusing the test completely can mean a suspension for at least a year. If you are convicted of driving under the influence, your license can then be revoked for at least a year for the first offense, and longer for subsequent offenses. You will also likely be required to install an ignition interlock device on your vehicle for a period of time.

Consequences For Driving With a Suspended License

In Illinois, the base level charge for driving on a suspended or revoked license is a Class A misdemeanor, which carries up to 364 days in jail and $2,500 in fines. If you are driving with a suspended license after being convicted of DUI, Illinois law requires at least 10 days in jail or 30 days of community service. Other aggravating factors, such as causing bodily injury or death while driving on a suspended license, can result in the offense being charged as a felony. A conviction for driving on a suspended license will also usually result in an extension equal to the length of the original suspension, while driving on a revoked license can result in an additional year before you are eligible for reinstatement.

Be advised that if you are caught driving on a suspended license at the time you are arrested for DUI, the consequences of both offenses can also be much more severe. Illinois law holds that if you have a suspended license when you are arrested for DUI, you will be charged with aggravated driving under the influence, which is a Class 4 felony.

Contact a McHenry County Traffic Violations Attorney

Driving on a suspended license is often a one-time mistake, but that one-time mistake can be serious and costly, especially if you rely on your vehicle to get to work. A skilled Crystal Lake traffic citations attorney from Botto Gilbert Lancaster, PC may be able to assist you in having the charge reduced, or in obtaining a restricted driving permit or monitoring device driving permit to avoid a charge in the first place. Call our offices today at 815-338-3838 to set up a consultation. 




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