Although thousands of people are arrested for driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs in Chicago every year, these charges are not always easy to beat. You need an aggressive Chicago DUI lawyer to fight your charges. DUI offenders may face serious consequences, including license suspension, potential jail time, and expensive fines.
Even a first-time DUI offender may be subjected to the harsh legal consequences of a drunk driving charge. The best way to beat a DUI is by seeking the legal representation of a skilled Chicago DUI criminal defense lawyer. At Ktenas Law, we have successfully represented thousands of clients dealing with the threat of a criminal conviction. We can help in any number of circumstances and advise you of your legal rights.
Why You Should Get a Lawyer for a DUI
As experienced Chicago DUI criminal defense lawyers, we understand that a drunk driving conviction can have life-changing consequences in the life of any person. The severity of your drunk driving offense can play a crucial role in the criminal penalties you will receive. This is especially true if you are found guilty of vehicular homicide or had minors in your motor vehicle at the time the offense took place. However, even a first-time offender can suffer severe consequences as a result of driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol.
Learn More: What a DUI Lawyer can Do for Your Case
Because an intoxicated driving charge may still appear on your criminal record even if you avoided jail time, it's crucial to have a Chicago DUI criminal defense lawyer who will fight for your constitutional rights. At Chicago DUI Defence, our experienced DUI criminal defense attorneys have represented thousands of clients in Cook County, Kane County, Lake County, Will County, Kendall County, DuPage County, and throughout Illinois and we can help you beat your drunk driving charges. For a no-cost initial consultation, contact our Chicago criminal defense law firm today.
How Much Does a Drunk Driving Charge Cost in Chicago?
Being convicted of drunk driving, or pleading guilty to the DUI criminal offense, has serious legal consequences for both first-time and repeat DUI offenders. Just the financial effect of a drunk driving conviction can be punishingly harsh. There are further consequences that a criminal conviction can bring, including potential prison time, difficulties in finding a job, driving a motor vehicle, or moving.
Most individuals have some vague understanding that drunk driving convictions are costly. Do you know just how costly a DUI is? On average, a first-time DUI conviction costs the drunk driver over $10,000. The few people who have that sort of money available don't want to spend it on resolving a driving under the influence charge, and most people don't even have the money in the first place meaning that a criminal conviction can quickly turn into a serious financial burden.
The cost of a drunk driving conviction comes from many different sources. There are usually hefty fines imposed by the court, of course, but the offender may also have to pay legal fees, DMV fees, drug and alcohol education course fees, and higher insurance premiums. Our knowledgeable DUI lawyers can help you keep the cost of a criminal conviction under control along with many other legal services.
The financial burden of a DUI criminal charge can extend even further. If you are convicted or plead “guilty” or “no contest” to drunk driving criminal charges, you may be throwing substantial obstacles into your professional career. You may be required to report the criminal conviction to your current employer and any professional organization you're a part of. The criminal conviction may make it more difficult or impossible for you to secure professional certifications. such as a commercial driver's license, in the future. You may even have to report the DUI conviction whenever you apply for future jobs.
Related Content: Can You go to Jail for a DUI?
Can You Still Drive After a DUI in Chicago?
A first-time offender who wishes to drive during the license suspension period has to apply to the Secretary of State for a Monitoring Device Driving Permit (MDDP). An MDDP is a driving permit that enables a driver with a suspended driver's license unlimited driving privileges despite the license suspension. To qualify as a first-time offender under the Illinois Vehicle Code (625 ILCS 5/11-500), and therefore qualify for an MDDP, a DUI offender must not have:
- Received a previous statutory summary suspension in the five years before the driver’s current license suspension;
- Been convicted of DUI or assigned court supervision for drunk driving in Illinois; or
- A drunk driving conviction from another state within 5 years.
An MDDP can't be issued if the Secretary of State finds that:
- The driver’s license is invalid;
- Death or great bodily harm to another person resulted from the incident leading to drunk driving arrest;
- The driver has been previously convicted of aggravated DUI involving death or reckless homicide;
- The driver is underage; or
- The driver is a qualifying and licensed medical marijuana patient.
Once approved for an MDDP, the defendant must pay a monthly administration fee of up to $30. Furthermore, an approved driver has 14 days from the day the MDDP is issued to install a breath alcohol ignition interlock device in their vehicle.
A Breath Alcohol Ignition Interlock Device (BAIID) is a device that is attached to a vehicle’s starter system. To start the vehicle, a driver has to blow into the device and receive a Blood Alcohol Concentration (BAC) reading. The device measures a driver’s blood alcohol content, and if the content is above a certain point, the driver can't start the vehicle and must retest after a short time. The approved blood-alcohol level below which the driver can start the car and drive is programmed into the device by the Secretary of State. Tampering with a breath alcohol ignition interlock device is considered a violation of the MDDP program, which means you’ll need an experienced attorney to help you.
Sometimes, if a driver needs to drive a different vehicle in the course of their employment, they must get permission from the Secretary of State to drive that vehicle without installing an ignition interlock device. However, there are certain employees, such as school bus drivers, who can't receive this accommodation. If you don't have an MDDP, driving while on a suspended license is a class 4 felony offense.
Contact an Experienced Chicago DUI Criminal Defense Attorney Today for Legal Advice!
Under Illinois drunk driving laws, driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs begins with a suspicion of impaired driving by a police officer. This often occurs through observation of a traffic violation or when responding to an automobile accident. A suspicion of intoxication may occur when a law enforcement officer observes a driver’s behavior, demeanor, and physical appearance.
Typically, if a police officer suspects a driver is driving while drunk the suspect will be asked to submit to a series of field sobriety tests. Many people don't know that they can refuse to consent to these tests. These concerns can be answered by an experienced Chicago DUI Lawyer. Our Chicago DUI lawyers have helped thousands of clients in DuPage County, Cook County, Kane County, Kendall County, Lake County, and throughout Illinois keep a clean driving record and we can help you too.
Having an experienced Cook County DUI attorney can make a substantial difference in whether you're successful at a preliminary hearing to reinstate your driver's license after either suspension or revocation. Contact an attorney at Ktenas Law today at 312-800-1626 for a free initial consultation on your case.