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Category Archives: DUI

DuPage County DUI attorneys, field sobriety testsGetting pulled over on suspicion of driving under the influence means that a police officer will take every opportunity he or she has to determine if you are driving drunk. From the moment an officer spots your vehicle, he or she will be gathering evidence that may be used to prove in court that you were driving under the influence. 

One way officers will attempt to determine your level of intoxication is through field sobriety tests. There are three types of field sobriety tests:

  1. Walk-and-Turn Test. In this test, officers have drivers walk heel to toe in a straight line and then have them pivot around asking them to walk in the other direction. An officer may also ask you to count your steps as you take them.
  2. One Legged Stand Test. An officer will ask a driver to stand on one leg with the other leg outstretched in front of the body. The driver will be required to hold this position without swaying or moving arms for balance.
  3. Horizontal Gaze Nystagmus Test. When a person is intoxicated, his or her eyes will involuntarily jerk as they focus on a moving object. In this test, an officer will have a driver follow a finger moving right and left watching for the jerking eye movements.

Field Sobriety Tests Are a Poor Measure of Impairment

There are a couple of problems with these field tests. First, a driver may not be able to complete these tasks acceptably when sober. Some people with or without health conditions find it hard to stand on one leg without losing balance. The nervousness that comes with any police interaction can also play a role.

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DuPage County DUI attorney, breath alcohol ignition interlock deviceIf you have been convicted of a DUI in Illinois, one of your top concerns will be when you will be able to drive again. Illinois, along with a majority of states, allows drivers convicted of DUI to drive if they install a breath alcohol ignition interlock device (BAIID). 

This is a popular program. On average in Illinois, 12,000 drivers are using BAIIDs. Consider four facts about this device, and how to get one.

1. A BAIID is subject to three types of fees.

Each vendor charges its own fees, but on average a BAIID vendor charges $85 for installation. There is also a monthly rental for the device, which is usually about $80. Finally, the Illinois Secretary of State charges $30 month for monitoring. If you have been declared indigent by the court, your costs could be lower.

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Wheaton DUI defense attorney, Illinois DUIDriving under the influence of drugs or alcohol can result in life-changing consequences if caught in Illinois. To keep streets safe from impaired drivers, state lawmakers have passed a series of bills making Illinois DUI repercussions among the harshest in the nation.

Although not as strict as Arizona, as shown in recent rankings, Illinois is far from being as lenient as South Dakota—the most forgiving of DUI consequences. The thought of moving to a new, more lenient state crosses the minds of many who face DUI allegations. Is this a viable option if someone is looking to protect his or her future? 

Consequences

If you have received a DUI while driving within the state of Illinois, or if you have been driving in another state using an Illinois driver’s license, an automatic statutory summary suspension will begin. The Secretary of State issues a suspension after a failure of chemical testing or a refusal to chemical testing. A suspension is only a temporary loss of driving privileges and may be sorted out during a court hearing. It is entirely possible to be found guilty of DUI and to have the suspension rescinded by a judge, or vice versa after the hearing. Additionally, with new laws applicable as of 2016, a Monitoring Device Driving Permit may be approved to regain the use of your vehicle. Other penalties for a first-time offense include:

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DUI, breathalyzer pitfalls, DuPage County DUI defense attorneyYou are charged with your first DUI. You knew you only had one drink and were safe to operate your vehicle. The swerve the officer reported occurred when you were avoiding a deer. The shifts in your driving speed were because it was late on a Friday after a long week of work and you were not even paying attention to your foot. Shocked to see an officer’s lights in your rearview mirror, you assumed you might have been speeding. When the officer asked you to submit to a breathalyzer, although confused, you agreed. You failed. Your life is dramatically altered now because of that test, which, in your opinion, was wrong.

The Outlook

If you have never been the recipient of a DUI, a wealth of new thoughts may be running through your mind, not the least of which is what this can do to your future. In Illinois, there are strict regulations pertaining to the punishment of DUI offenders. Consequences for the first offense include:

  • Up to one year of incarceration;
  • Fines and penalties of up to $2,500;
  • Minimum license suspension of up to one year; and
  • Required interlock Ignition Device (IID) installation.

Although much of this appears intimidating, remember that no matter the odds stacked against you, there are often avenues for a defense that are not immediately visible. Also, with the newly instated DUI laws, you may be eligible for a Monitoring Device Driving Permit (MDDP) within the first 30 days of the statutory suspension period—further proof that the situation may not be as dire as it presently seems.

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monitoring device driving permit, Wheaton DUI defense attorneyDriving under the influence of drugs or alcohol is considered a serious offense no matter where you live in the United States. However, in Illinois, punishments have the potential to be harsher than other states. The Illinois State Police site DUI as the cause of hundreds of deaths annually and hundreds more seriously injured and even disabled. Also with this reasoning, judges often enact strict, life-altering punishments upon conviction. With proper legal knowledge and etiquette, it is possible to receive a lesser penalty or special permissions, such as a Monitoring Device Driving Permit.

Standard Penalties

Along with a price hike in your insurance premiums, points on your license, and a mark on your record, there are additional penalties that can ensue after being formally found guilty of a DUI. For a first time conviction, these penalties include:

  • Minimum loss of driving privileges for one year;
  • Incarceration of up to one year; and
  • Fines of up to $2,500.

Your Driving Privileges Are Important!

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