When Should I Call a DUI Lawyer Belleville IL?

Being convicted of a DUI can result in disastrous consequences that can impact your finances, your freedom, and your reputation. If you have been charged with a DUI, it is imperative that you contact an experienced DUI Lawyer Belleville IL to help protect your rights and begin working to reduce or avoid the consequences of this charge. Having a criminal defense attorney on your side will give you the best possible chance at a favorable outcome in your case.


Here Is What You Can Expect After Being Charged With a DUI in Illinois

According to the Illinois Secretary of State, Jesse White, more than 26,000 people were arrested for DUI in the state in a year’s time, and 90 percent of those arrests resulted in the loss of an individual’s driving privileges, including almost 300 drivers under 21 who lost their license as a result of Illinois’ Zero Tolerance Law for underage drinking. 86 percent of all drivers who were arrested for DUI during that time frame were first-time offenders.

DUI Lawyer Belleville IL Laws

As with most other states in the country, the legal impairment limit for alcohol for adults over 21 when driving is .08 grams of alcohol per deciliter of blood. This is the point of impairment in which the risk of causing a crash increases exponentially due to the impact of the alcohol on skills the driver needs to operate his or her motor vehicle safely. Illinois’ DUI laws state the following:

  • A driver is considered impaired if he or she has a blood or breath alcohol content (BAC) of .08 or higher; is under the influence of alcohol, or is under the influence of any intoxicating compound or a combination of intoxicating compounds or drugs to the point that it impairs their ability to operate the vehicle safely.
  • A first time DUI is a misdemeanor offense. The penalties for subsequent impairment convictions will increase.
  • Penalties also increase if the driver’s impairment results in an accident that causes serious bodily harm or death to another person, if the driver was driving the wrong way on a one-way road, or if the impairment occurred while the driver was operating a school bus. These are all considered “aggravating factors.”
  • Illinois’ Zero Tolerance Law states that any driver under the age of 21 who is found to have any trace of alcohol in his or her system will lose driving privileges for a minimum of two years.

Illinois DUI Penalties

Generally, a person who has been arrested for a first-time DUI will be released on bond and will be given a court date in which to appear to answer to the charge. At the same time, notice will be given to the driver that his or her license will be suspended within 46 days. For first-time offenders — If a breathalyzer test if failed, the suspension period will last six months. If you refuse to take a test, the suspension period is up to one year. Each subsequent offense is penalized with much longer suspensions.

Illinois is an implied consent state, which means that — by obtaining a driver’s license — the driver gives his or her implied consent to a breathalyzer or blood test if suspected of impaired driving. Refusing to submit to a breathalyzer will typically result in a longer suspension than blowing over the limit on your test.

Other penalties vary widely depending on the circumstances of the offense. However, DUI penalties often include:

  • Installation of an ignition interlock device on the driver’s vehicle, at the driver’s expense.
  • Incarceration in jail or even in prison.
  • Court-ordered alcohol treatment and/or alcohol education classes.
  • Difficulty obtaining auto insurance and a large increase in the cost of obtaining insurance.
  • The conviction will remain on the driver’s driving record and may appear on criminal background checks, potentially impacting the individual’s ability to get a job, attend college, or rent an apartment.


Lookback Period for Illinois DUIs

It is not unusual for states to have a lookback period of five to ten years for DUIs. What this means is that if you have been convicted of a DUI and you are convicted of a second impairment-related driving offense during that time frame, it will count as your second DUI and will amount to increased penalties. After the lookback period has expired, a second impairment-related offense would be treated as though it was the driver’s first DUI.

Illinois does not have a lookback period. What this means is that the first DUI remains on the driver’s permanent driving record and any subsequent DUIs or other impairment-related driving offenses will be treated as an additional conviction, regardless of how many years it has been since the last conviction.


Reinstatement of Driving Privileges After a DUI

A first-time offender can get his or her driving privileges reinstated during the mandatory suspension period by applying for a Monitoring Device Driver’s Permit (MDDP) from the Secretary of State, provided he or she has not:

  • Received a previous suspension within the last five years.
  • Received a previous DUI conviction and is not under assigned court supervision for a DUI in Illinois.
  • Had a DUI conviction in any other state in the last five years.
  • Caused an accident that resulted in serious bodily harm to another person or been previously convicted of reckless homicide or aggravated DUI involving death.
  • Under 18 years old.
  • A qualifying and licensed medical marijuana patient.

The MDDP requires the driver to have an ignition interlock installed on his or her car within 14 days of its issuance, and that device remains throughout the suspension. The driver is also required to pay a monthly administration fee of $30.

DUI Lawyer Belleville IL – DUI 101: Here’s What You Need To Know

There are no fewer than seven types of DUI charges in Illinois. What does that mean, you ask? For example, if you blow .08 or higher you know that you can be arrested for DUI. Your DUI Lawyer Belleville IL will commonly refer to this as “(a)(1)”  due to it falling under 625 ILCS 5/11-501(a)(1), which states as follows:

Sec. 11-501. Driving while under the influence of alcohol, other drug or drugs, intoxicating compound or compounds or any combination thereof.

(a) A person shall not drive or be in actual physical control of any vehicle within this State while:

(1) the alcohol concentration in the person’s blood, other bodily substance, or breath is 0.08 or more based on the definition of blood and breath units in Section 11-501.2;

That’s pretty straightforward, but that’s just the one way to get charged with a DUI. Let’s take a look at the second way. 625 ILCS 5/11-501(a)(2), or “(a)(2)” as DUI attorneys call it, is at best, incredibly vague:

Sec. 11-501. Driving while under the influence of alcohol, other drug or drugs, intoxicating compound or compounds or any combination thereof.

(a) A person shall not drive or be in actual physical control of any vehicle within this State while:

(2) under the influence of alcohol;

Okay, so the first one makes it clear that you can be charged with a DUI if the alcohol concentration is .08 or higher. The second one though, just says you can be charged with a DUI if you’re “under the influence of alcohol.” What does that really mean? Isn’t that just the same thing? How would you know if a person was under the influence of alcohol if they didn’t have a .08 breathalyzer result? Those are all great questions.

625 ILCS 5/11-501(a)(2) is the statute a DUI is charged under when the State does not have a breathalyzer result as evidence. Didn’t you just say that I cannot refuse the breathalyzer test at the station? Not exactly; I said that if you refused, “your license will be automatically suspended.” Here’s the catch: if you refuse, your license is suspended, but if you blow .08 or higher, your license is also suspended. The only advantage to blowing is that your suspension is usually shorter because you did not refuse. The disadvantage is that if you do blow .08 or higher, it will be used as evidence against you, and even without any other indicators of intoxication, it can lead to a conviction. That is a tremendous disadvantage.

​Always keep in mind that a DUI conviction, and even a DUI that you received supervision on, cannot be sealed or expunged. It will stay on your record for the rest of your life. The only way to avoid this is by getting the charge amended, dismissed, or being acquitted at trial. A Belleville DUI lawyer will give you the best chances of a favorable outcome.


Choosing a DUI Lawyer Belleville IL to fight for your rights is an important decision and can have a lasting impact on your life. The Law Office of Jason B Going is home to an experienced and proven DUI defense team who will give you the best chance at a favorable outcome in your case.

If you have been charged with DUI or any other criminal charges, we can help get you the best possible results. Contact us today for a free consultation and get started right away building your defense.

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The Law Office of Jason B. Going has years of experience providing excellent results helping clients just like you.

Helping those Injured in Accidents Across Illinois

Through the years Jason has served as an advocate for numerous clients in matters before various Circuit Courts in Illinois and Missouri as well as before the Missouri Court of Appeals. He represents clients in various areas of law including personal injury, automobile accidents, workers' compensation, criminal defense, DUI/DWI defense, and traffic cases.. Jason is licensed in Illinois, Missouri, and Florida.

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