Perhaps you are visiting the great state of Illinois and you get pulled over and arrested for driving under the influence. There are many out-of-state drivers who think that just because they are not in their home state, this will be nothing more than a traffic violation or a slap on the wrist.
What really happens when I am an out-of-state resident and I get a Chicago DUI? The answer might surprise you.
Similar Charges Across the Country
Despite you being away from the state where your driver’s license was issues, you face serious consequences when you are arrested under suspicion of DUI in Chicago. Every state now has similar DUI penalties on the books, whether you reside in Illinois or elsewhere in the country. Thanks in part to the Congressional Highway Fund, the legal driving limit is the same in every state. If you are tested and your blood alcohol level is over 0.08, then you are considered driving drunk, regardless what part of the country the offense occurred.
Although the regulations are the same for the amount of alcohol in the blood in each state, the penalties might not be because every state handles the DUI cases differently. Just like how one judge may rule differently for two similar DUI cases, so too are the penalties handed down from state to state.
Understanding the Complexities of the Law
There are many out-of-state drivers who get arrested in Chicago for DUI and try to defend themselves because they think they are off the hook when they get back home. Not only can the DUI charges be different in each state, the sanctions will also be affected concerning where the offense took place. What may come as a surprise to many out-of-state residents arrested in Chicago for DUI is that they may be subject to double the punishment in some circumstances. Despite the ruling in the Chicago court, these drivers might have to deal with a whole new set of troubles once back in their home state.
Don’t allow this one mistake to ruin your financial future, the DUI attorney will work tirelessly on your behalf to discredit the evidence present by the police so that the chances of having to pay for it twice won’t occur.
Keeping Your DUI a Secret
Drivers who are arrested for DUI in Chicago might think that they can deal with the consequences here and keep the incident a secret from the state where the license has been issued. The thinking here is that I made a mistake in Illinois, so now I can’t drive there, but I should be fine everywhere else. Not understanding the complexities of the DUI laws and entering into a plea-bargain with the hopes of it staying a secret could be more costly than imagined. The majority of states are included in an interstate license compact, which in a sense alerts your local state police if you have been arrested for a variety of crimes out of your home state.
Your Chicago DUI attorney will explain how all the information pertaining to your arrest and conviction can be forwarded to the police in the city in which you reside. The trouble now escalates because it is at the discretion of your local police to punish you even further under the laws governing your own state.
The Cost of Getting a Chicago DUI
Getting a DUI in Chicago is costly enough for residents of Illinois, out-of-state drivers may be subjected to far more financial burdens than they first anticipated. When you hire a skilled Chicago DUI attorney, they will take the time to walk you through all the details of this case, including the costs that could be incurred even when you return home. There are a number of states that already have reciprocity agreements that will require the state where you reside to implement additional punishments for getting a DUI out-of-state. Even though the state does have the option to punish you further, it is usually on a case-by-case basis.
Although the state of Illinois can not take away your out-of-state driver’s license, there are plenty of harsh punishments the court can impose on the driver. The Chicago judge presiding over your DUI case could impose significant fines, including towing and storage of your vehicle, court fees, and even recommend jail time. The judge could revoke the driving privileges for the state of Illinois.
When you reside out of the state of Illinois and get a DUI in Chicago, it is imperative you begin working with a skilled DUI attorney sooner than later. Getting the charges dismissed or the case dropped will go a long way in reducing the negative financial impact this incident can have when dealing with your state government back home.