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What is DUI Court Supervision in Illinois?

In Illinois, court supervision is a sentence that’s available once in your lifetime for intoxicated driving. It’s the best possible outcome in a driving under influence of alcohol or drugs case aside from a finding of “not guilty” or dismissal after a criminal trial on a misdemeanor DUI offense. However, in Illinois DUI court supervision isn’t an option for felony offenses.

If a first-time offender completes court supervision successfully, that will prevent the entry of a criminal conviction on their public record. According to Illinois drunk driving laws, at the completion of the supervision period, if the criminal court determines the offender has successfully complied with all the conditions of supervision, the court will discharge the offender and dismiss the DUI charges.

However, an impaired driving offense is also punishable by a DUI conviction, including conditional discharge, probation, alcohol evaluation, and jail time. Thus, it’s vital to note that a court supervision sentence is at the prosecutor’s or judge's discretion and isn’t guaranteed by any means just because you’re eligible.

Is Court Supervision Considered a Criminal Conviction in Illinois?

In Illinois, a person with no previous drunk driving charges or reckless driving charges qualifies for a special disposition called court supervision. In Illinois, a DUI court supervision is typically reserved for first-time DUI offenders. Under Illinois law, court supervision when completed concludes a DUI sentence with no drunk driving conviction being entered on the finding of guilty.

Although a DUI offender may have been found guilty at a court trial or have entered a guilty plea, there’s no criminal conviction. This is crucial because a drunk driving conviction causes license suspension in Illinois. Court supervision is a sentencing option that’s available for most misdemeanor DUI charges committed in Illinois.

Court supervision is often a dismissal of criminal charges. During the period of court supervision, no conviction enters into your driving record, and upon successful completion, your drunk driving case is dismissed. Thus, this sentencing option allows you to avoid a criminal conviction.

Learn More: What to Do After a DUI

What is DUI Court Supervision in Illinois?

A DUI offender might qualify for driver court supervision if they have never been arrested and found guilty of a drunk driving offense in the past, whether in Illinois or any other state. Illinois DUI court supervision won’t appear on a driver’s public criminal record after the period of supervision is over, nor will it impact your driving privileges.

Since implementing the Illinois statutory summary suspension law in 1986, the Illinois Secretary of State’s office has tracked all intoxicated driving cases from arrest to case disposition and Illinois courts must report case dispositions for all driving under influence cases to the secretary of state since 1984. Because the secretary of state’s office monitors all court supervisions, it’s relatively easy to identify repeat drunk driving offenders, which allows courts to impose criminal penalties based on a clear picture.

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If a person has been arrested on a DUI charge in the past and served a term of supervision, or was convicted, or entered a guilty plea to a wet reckless driving charge, that individual doesn't qualify for court-imposed supervision. Based on the offender’s driving history and the circumstances of their impaired driving case, they may face driver’s license suspension or license revocation, hefty fines, potential jail time, community service, alcohol classes, vehicle impoundment, and seizure.

Also, their DUI charges may be upgraded from a misdemeanor offense to a felony offense, based on their driving history and the details of their case. This may happen if they committed the driving under the influence offense while their license was suspended or revoked for a previous drunk driving arrest or conviction. Or if the defendant has committed at least two previous drunk driving charges or if there were severe or fatal bodily harm involved.

If the court grants a court suspension for an intoxicated driving offense, that driver isn’t subject to the mandatory criminal penalties of the drunk driving conviction. Illinois law prohibits criminal courts from granting court supervision to people more than once in their lifetime for drunk driving charges.

A skilled Chicago DUI attorney at Ktenas Law can help you beat your DUI charges. Our team of skilled DUI criminal defense lawyers has defended thousands of clients against intoxicated driving charges throughout Illinois, including Cook County, Kane County, Dupage County, Kendall County, Will County, and Lake County.

Our seasoned DUI criminal defense team knows which defense strategies are effective in criminal court and how to challenge the evidence collected by law enforcement officers and presented by the prosecution. For a no-cost initial consultation, contact our Chicago criminal defense law firm today at 312-800-1626

If you’re facing impaired driving charges, you need to hire a skilled Cook County DUI criminal defense lawyer who can fiercely protect your constitutional rights. Call Ktenas Law today at 312-800-1626 for customized legal representation. You can also chat with our legal team online to learn how our skilled DUI criminal defense lawyers can help. 

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