Illinois jurisdiction recently determined that driver’s license suspension is not considered a punishment and does not violate the United States’ double jeopardy clause along with Illinois double jeopardy clauses. Illinois classifies first and second driving under the influence or driving while intoxicated charges as misdemeanor offenses. A third driving under the influence or driving while intoxicated offense is, however, classified as a felony offense. Any offense of drunk driving involving bodily injury to another is also considered a felony offense, despite the number of prior offenses.
Illinois DUI Punishments
A first offense of DUI or DWI will result in court supervision requirement. Once supervision is complete, the offense will not be seen as a conviction. This however cannot be expunged from an individual’s record. Any DUI or DWI conviction will include driver’s license suspension and up to three hundred and sixty-four days in jail along with a fine up to twenty-five hundred dollars.
A first-time DUI offender’s driver’s license suspension will be for a minimum of a year. A second-time offense within twenty years will earn a driver’s license suspension for five years. A third-time offense or a subsequent offense will earn a driver’s license suspension for ten years.
Minors Driving Under the Influence
Minors who are arrested for driving under the influence will have their driver’s licenses suspended for minimum of two years for a first offense. If an individual meets all the Secretary of State’s requirements, a minor may obtain a restricted driving permit to expire after one year of issuing. Restrictions can include only driving allowance between five in the morning and nine in the evening.
A second offense will result in driver’s license suspension for a minimum of five years or until the minor is twenty-one years of age. After five years and if all the requirements are met, the individual may petition for a restricted permit. A third DUI or DWI offense or a subsequence DUI or DWI offense before the age of twenty-one will result in driver’s license suspension for ten years minimum. A third offense can also result in a twenty-five thousand-dollar fine and three years of imprisonment. Driving privileges cannot be restored until ten years have passed.
A fourth DUI or DWI offense can also result in an expulsion from all driving privileges for the rest of the individual’s life.
Upon a driving under the influence or driving while intoxicated arrest, the individual will be asked to take a chemical test. This test will determine the individual’s blood alcohol content percentage. If the percentage is over the legal limit, 0.08 percent, then he or she may be convicted by the court at a later hearing.
An individual who refuses to submit to a chemical test — either blood test, breath test, or urine test — he or she will have his or her driver’s license automatically suspended on the forty-sixth day after the law enforcement sworn report was filed. The amount of time for which a driver’s license is to be suspended depends on the number of prior DUI convictions.