Drunk Driving through Skokie, IL
As a suburb of Chicago, Skokie can get a lot of traffic, so it stands to reason that there will be some drivers who are distracted or otherwise impaired. Illinois boasts having some of the safest roadways all across the nation, and this is in part due to their strict enforcement of DUI laws. Skokie, IL, maintains a level of safety that is nearly one-third higher than other cities in the country, so you can be sure that law enforcement officials are on high alert for any signs of trouble on the roads. Even the community is involved in the security of the area, with special numbers that citizens may call to alert law enforcement of potential criminal activities. If you want to drive after you have been drinking, there could be a good chance that you will be pulled over in Skokie.
If you show any signs of impairment while behind the wheel, Skokie law enforcement may make a point to pull you over to check to see if you can be charged with a DUI offense. It does not matter if you have had just one drink or if you have not been drinking at all; a law enforcement officer can use his or her judgment on determining if you might be a driving risk. Once you have been pulled over, it is up to the officer to determine to perform a field sobriety test or a breathalyzer test. You are within your rights to refuse to take either of these tests, but be aware that you may be arrested on the spot for refusing. However, this is a good time to adhere to your rights against self-incrimination by using your phone call to connect with a knowledgeable Skokie DUI lawyer.
Being Charged with DUI
If you agree to a field sobriety test, the officer may decide to perform a breathalyzer test, either on site or back at the police station. If your blood alcohol concentration, also referred to as BAC, registers at 0.08% or higher, you can be charged with drinking and driving. Even a lower BAC of between 0.05% and 0.08% may result in the filing of DUI charges against you if the law enforcement officer determines that you were driving erratically.
You will have to go to court in Skokie to make a plea. Rather than give them the evidence that they need to make a conviction against you, a great Skokie DUI attorney may be able to help you with a defense. This might be because you were distracted while you were driving, you were tired, or you were on prescribed medication. While these circumstances may also result in penalties against you, they may be less serious and detrimental to you future than a DUI charge.
Consequences of a Skokie DUI Conviction
The state of Illinois takes a tough stance on crime, resulting in pretty stiff penalties for those who are found guilty. It can be in your best interest to work with a qualified Skokie DUI attorney to help you with your case. Legally, you may have to pay fines in a minimum amount of $1,000 for a first offense. You might also face time in jail of up to six months. You also face additional sanctions that include a mandatory suspension of your driver’s license. You might also have to complete hours of community service as well as drug and alcohol programming. If this is not your first go around with a drinking and driving conviction, you face even stiffer penalties. Getting a Skokie DUI lawyer to advocate on your behalf can help you to get the fair trial that you deserve.
You may think that you can just complete your penalties and that would be it, but you would be wrong. A DUI charge in Skokie will stay on your permanent record, visible to anyone who completes a background check on you. This can affect your rental agreements, your insurance, your credit, and even your employment. The financial strain may also result in personal problems with loved ones. Lack of a driver’s license may keep you from getting to work, so you could lose your job. Court hearings and counseling appointments can also hinder your ability to get to your job as necessary.
Problems You May Not Consider with a DUI Conviction in Illinois
As if all of the above-mentioned consequences are not enough, there are other matters concerning your driving privileges after being found guilty of drinking and driving. Without the help of an attorney that has experience in dealing with the Skokie court system, you might not understand your rights regarding administrative hearings. Local law enforcement may not tell you the process regarding a driver’s license suspension, which could cause you to lose your driving privileges without you being aware. This might be why about 91% of drivers who are charged with DUI in Illinois lose their driving privileges. Your lawyer can help you through the process.
When you are charged with DUI in Skokie, you do not automatically lose your driving privileges. The suspension does not begin until the 45th day following your arrest. This gives you tie to file the proper paperwork with the DMV to appeal the suspension. There are certain procedures that need to followed, so this can be simplified by working with a Skokie DUI attorney to protect your rights.
Get the Help You Need
You do not have to let the Illinois court system give you the maximum penalties without having a proper defense from a reliable Skokie DUI lawyer. Goldman & Associates is ready to help you at any time to prepare for your day in court. In many cases, your charges may be reduced or even dismissed. Make sure you find someone who is willing to aggressively fight on your behalf, and call us at Goldman & Associates at (773)484-3131 or (847)215-2600.