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DuPage County reckless driving charges attorneyThere are scores of traffic violations you can commit from behind the wheel -- speeding, running a stop sign, not using your blinkers -- the list goes on. One of the more serious traffic offenses you can commit is reckless driving. In Illinois, reckless driving can result in significant consequences, because reckless driving is not just a traffic ticket -- it can result in a misdemeanor or a felony charge, depending on your circumstances. If you have been charged with reckless driving, it is important that you understand the charges and related penalties.

What is Reckless Driving?

According to Illinois traffic laws, reckless driving occurs when a person either:

  • Drives any vehicle with a willful or wanton disregard for the safety of people or property; or
  • Knowingly drives a vehicle and uses an incline in a roadway -- such as a railroad crossing, bridge approach or hill -- to cause the vehicle to become airborne.

There is no one particular action that can get you charged with reckless driving in Illinois. Rather, it is up to the discretion of the arresting law enforcement officer and judge (and possibly a jury) to determine whether your actions on the road constitute reckless driving. 

Consequences for Reckless Driving

In its most basic form, reckless driving is charged as a Class A misdemeanor, the most serious class of misdemeanor. This means a reckless driving charge can result in up to one year in jail and up to $2,500 in fines.

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DuPage County aggravated speeding lawyerIn recent years, the state of Illinois has cracked down on speeding. According to the Illinois Department of Transportation, there were over 24,000 speeding citations recorded in 2015. Though speeding is often only a traffic ticket that comes with a fine, there are situations in which a speeding infraction can result in jail time and extensive fines. Though some people may think speeding is a victimless crime, it is not. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), nearly 10,000 people were killed due to speeding-related traffic accidents in 2017.

Illinois Aggravated Speeding Laws

According to the Illinois Vehicle Code, speeding 26 miles per hour or more over the posted speed limit is considered to be aggravated speeding. This is technically a criminal charge, rather than a traffic violation, which is why the potential consequences for aggravated speeding are more serious than just a fine.

26 mph to 34 mph over the speed limit: If you are caught driving 26 mph over the posted speed limit, but not more than 35 mph over the speed limit, you will be charged with a Class B misdemeanor. This means you could face up to six months in jail, up to two years of probation and up to $1,500 in fines.

35 mph or more over the speed limit: If you are caught driving more than 35 mph over the posted speed limit, you are committing a Class A misdemeanor. This charge carries a possible sentence of up to one year in jail, up to two years of probation and up to $2,500 in fines. If you are facing a speeding charge, a judge can also order that you complete community service or that you attend traffic school.

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DuPage County speeding ticket attorneys, speeding, traffic offenseThrill seekers and lead foot drivers beware: Excessive speeding can land you in jail. Under Illinois law, if you are going at least 26 miles per hour over the posted speed limit, you could face jail time.

The excessive speeding laws in Illinois provide:

  • Going more than 26-35 mph over the speed limit is a Class B misdemeanor. A Class B misdemeanor is punishable by 180 days in jail and/or up to a $1,500 fine.
  • Going more than 35 mph over the speed limit is a Class A misdemeanor. A Class A misdemeanor is punishable by up to 365 days in jail and/or up to a $2,500 fine.

The laws on this issue were updated in 2014, so if you have received a speeding ticket beforehand, different rules may apply.

No Supervision Available for Excessive Speeding

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