What is a DUI?

“Driving under the influence” (DUI) is probably the most common. The consequences of driving under the influence are severe. And while every state has laws prohibiting drunk driving, states use different terms to describe the offense.

All states have two types of DUI: “per se” DUIs and DUIs based on impairment. The difference is how the prosecution proves you were “under the influence.” To be convicted of a per se DUI, the prosecution must prove you drove with an amount of alcohol or drugs in your system that exceeded the legal limit. (In some states, the per se laws apply to blood alcohol concentration but not drug concentration.) Impairment DUIs, on the other hand, require proof that the driver’s mental or physical abilities were affected by the drugs or alcohol ingested.

Do You Need an Attorney?

A DUI is a criminal offense that carries serious consequences. A first conviction can lead to jail time, expensive fines, and license suspension. And aggravating factors — like prior convictions, a high blood alcohol concentration (BAC), or an accident — can increase the already-severe penalties. You are trying to handle your DUI case without an attorney.

Also, DUI law is complicated and constantly changing. So it’s easy to get tripped up in the legal nuances or misinterpret the law altogether. An attorney who focuses on and stays abreast of recent changes in DUI law will likely increase the chances of a good outcome.
Hiring an attorney certainly involves spending money. But in many cases, it’s well worth the investment. And if you can’t afford private counsel, you’re generally entitled to a court-appointed lawyer.

Get a Free Case Evaluation

The information on can give you a basic understanding of your state’s DUI laws. But if you want to know how the law applies to the facts of your case, it’s best to talk to a local Chicago, Illinois, DUI lawyer. We can put you in contact with a drunk driving attorney in your area.

Complete this form to get a free case review from an experienced local Chicago, Illinois, DUI attorney.

Call Chicago flat fee Lawyer Toma Makedonski for a free case evaluation at 773-727-5491

Statutory Summary Suspension

When charged with a DUI in Illinois, the second thing you must deal with is the Statutory Summary Suspension. A statutory suspension is not a criminal matter. It is a civil issue with the Illinois Secretary of State. Under Illinois law (625 ILCS 5/1-197.6), the Secretary of State can often suspend your license after a DUI arrest—even before you have had your day in court.

Driving is a privilege and not a right. The privilege is lost if you exceed the legal limit or refuse breath, blood, or urine testing. The suspension of your license often goes into effect automatically on the 46th day after you receive a notice of the summary suspension. Notice is often (but not always) given to you on the day of the arrest.
The length of the summary suspension will depend on whether or not you submitted to chemical testing for the presence of alcohol or other intoxicating compounds.

  • If you refuse to submit to this testing, your license will be suspended for at least one year;
  • If you submit to the testing, and it shows a blood alcohol concentration of 0.08 or more, your license will be suspended for at least six months;
  • If you submit to the testing, and it shows five nanograms of THC in your blood or ten nanograms of THC in your urine, your license will be suspended for at least six months;
  • Suppose you submitted to the chemical testing and showed any amount of a drug, substance, or compound resulting from the unlawful use of a controlled substance and an intoxicating compound. In that case, your license will be suspended for at least six months.

This suspension occurs regardless of the outcome of your DUI. After the suspension period, you must pay the Secretary of State a reinstatement fee. Your license will remain suspended until reinstatement.

Call Chicago flat fee Lawyer Toma Makedonski for a free case evaluation at 773-727-5491

Suspended Drivers License

A formal hearing is required if the petitioner has two Driving Under the Influence (DUI) arrests and a statutory summary suspension in their driving history. A petition must be mailed on the defendant’s behalf to the Illinois Secretary of State office, with a $50 fee to have a hearing. A hearing date is then assigned. Illinois secretary will provide information on the type of hearing required to reinstate a driver’s license. You can also stop into several Secretary of State locations and discuss it with an informal hearing officer.

You will need the following documentation for the hearing: Uniform Evaluation (including alcohol/drug use history), an Updated Evaluation (if it’s been more than six months since the original Uniform Evaluation), a Risk Education/Remedial Education Certificate, a Treatment Verification Form, an Individualized Treatment Plan, a Discharge Summary, an Aftercare or Continuing Care Plan (for some drivers), a Medical Report (if on medication or has existing medical or mental health problems), and Continuing Care Status Report. Some drivers will need letters of abstinence from friends and family.

Call Chicago flat fee Lawyer Toma Makedonski for a free case evaluation at 773-727-5491

Attorney Toma Makedonski
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