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Wheaton IL DUI defense lawyerDriving while under the influence of alcohol or drugs is extremely dangerous. According to the Illinois Secretary of State's Office, there were over 27,000 DUI arrests in Illinois in 2017. The state takes DUI arrests very seriously which is why 91 percent of people who were arrested for DUI and were eligible, lost their driving privileges. Still, the state also recognizes that people should not have to be put through months of hardship for one mistake. This is why Illinois allows certain DUI offenders to apply for one of two types of driving permits: a monitoring device driving permit (MDDP) or a restricted driving permit (RDP).

Monitoring Device Driving Permit (MDDP)

In order to apply for an MDDP, you must be a first-time DUI offender. This means you must not have received a statutory summary suspension in the past five years or have been convicted of a DUI in Illinois or any other state within the past five years. In addition, your DUI arrest must not have caused death or great bodily harm to another, and you must not have been previously convicted of reckless homicide or aggravated DUI that resulted in death.

While you have an MDDP, you must have a breath alcohol ignition interlock device (BAIID) installed into any vehicle that you drive, though you may drive anywhere at any time once you have the permit and have the BAIID installed. 

Restricted Driving Permit (RDP)

If you are ineligible for an MDDP, you may be eligible for an RDP. In order to qualify for an RDP, you must be able to prove that hardship exists. You must also provide a current professional drug and/or alcohol evaluation and, in some cases, proof of remedial education or treatment. You must also have a BAIID installed into any vehicle you drive during the length of the permit. In addition, the have an RDP issued to you, you must attend a hearing at the Secretary of State’s Office so they can determine whether there is a threat to public safety if you were issued a permit.

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IL DUI lawyerGetting pulled over by police while intoxicated or under the influence of drugs can seriously impact your life, as well as your livelihood if your driving privileges are taken away. While Illinois laws are stringent when it comes to driving under the influence, the state sometimes provides relief for those facing their first DUI charge. Statistics released by the state say around 20 percent of first-time offenders are actually convicted. Many are instead required to comply with court supervision, and possible drug and alcohol counseling or driving school.

To effectively navigate the process and achieve the most positive outcome possible, you do not want to represent yourself in court. You should entrust an experienced DUI attorney to handle this critical juncture in your life. Here is a look at DUI charges, potential penalties, and options for first-time offenders:

DUI in Illinois

In Illinois, driving under the influence is defined as driving a vehicle while impaired by alcohol, or illegal or prescribed drugs. You are considered under the influence if you have a blood-alcohol content (BAC) of .08 or above; a marijuana THC concentration of at least five nanograms per milliliter of blood, or 10 nanograms per milliliter of other bodily fluid; or if you have used another controlled substance or are impaired by medication.

Illinois DUI Penalties

If you fail a chemical test administered by a law enforcement officer, as a first-time offender, you may have your driver’s license suspended for six months if convicted. If you refuse a chemical test, you could face a 12-month suspension.

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DuPage County criminal defense lawyer, first DUI

If you are charged with a first-time DUI offense, you may be unsure as to how you should respond when speaking with an officer. For example, should you be cooperative and do everything an officer asks? Or, should you refuse to do anything? The answer lies somewhere in between the two.

First and foremost, an officer's job is to keep citizens safe. Yet, just like every human being, an officer may be experiencing a bad day, therefore resulting in a short temper and little patience. When responding to an officer's questions, do not become antagonistic in your responses; however, do not admit guilt. Admission adds evidence against you and is hard to come back from defensively. An officer cannot make an arrest without just cause.

Also, keep in mind that police are not required to tell the truth. Officers are legally allowed to lie to convince you to cooperate. Still, answer an officer's questions politely but do not offer any other information such as how many beverages you consumed. Moreover, do not discuss your driving that night. In sum, it is best to keep your mouth shut as much as possible. Anything that is communicated during that time is allowable in a court of law.

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