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DUI Penalties

Chicago DUI Penalties Attorney

The Legal Consequences of Drinking and Driving

DUI conviction in Chicago, Illinois may carry such penalties as incarceration, community service, participation in a substance abuse program and forfeiture of your vehicle, along with driver's license suspension/revocation and fines. A first offense is generally charged as a misdemeanor and for that reason, your Chicago DUI lawyer may be able to arrange for court supervision, which will not appear on your record once you have complied with certain conditions (usually including a substance abuse or alcohol evaluation and treatment, completion of a Victim Impact Panel, payment of various fees and fines without additional arrest.)

Penalties for Misdemeanor vs. Felony Convictions

A misdemeanor conviction carries up to one year in prison, 240 hours of community service, loss of driving privileges for a minimum of one year, and fines up to $2,500. A defendant may also be required to have a BAIID (Breath Alcohol Ignition Interlock Device) installed in his or her vehicle when granted driving relief. Penalties for a felony conviction can result in up to 30 years' incarceration, fines up to $25,000 lifetime and revocation of driving privileges. Further consequences of a DUI conviction may include:

  • High-risk insurance for three years
  • Vehicle registration suspended or revoked
  • Lost work time
  • Conviction is part of the offender's driving record
  • Required to complete a drug or alcohol evaluation and a drug/alcohol education course or substance abuse treatment program
  • Vehicle may be impounded or seized
  • Ignition Interlock Device installed in the offender's vehicle as a condition of driving relief
  • Must fulfill the requirements of the Department of Administrative Hearings before obtaining a Restricted Driving Permit

The stakes are high and it is crucial to have a fully qualified DUI defense attorney to immediately seek out viable defense options in your case.

It is vital that a defense is initiated for any DUI charge regardless of whether it is a felony or a misdemeanor. Preventing a first conviction from appearing on your criminal record will benefit you greatly in the future.

Our legal team fights vigorously to prevent a conviction on any first or subsequent DUI offense. Contact a Chicago DUI attorney at our firm to discuss your defense.