With the new year comes multiple new laws and regulations in Illinois. One of the most significant pieces of legislation is the most recent amendment to the Illinois is the Safety, Accountability, Fairness and Equity-Today (SAFE-T Act). Among many other important provisions, the Act limits when the state may suspend a person’s driver’s license.
Changes Being Implemented to Illinois Driver’s License Suspension Laws
In Illinois, a person’s driver’s license can be suspended for many different reasons. Driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol, having too many driving violations or points on their license, and being involved in a hit-and-run accident are some of the most common reasons for suspension. The length of time a license is suspended varies depending on the violation but can range from six months to several years. During a period of suspension, it is illegal to drive and doing so can result in serious consequences, such as an extended suspension or even jail time.
The SAFE-T Act reduces the circumstances in which a person may have their license suspended. As of January 1, 2023, an individual can no longer face license suspension for:
- Failure to pay traffic tickets – Before the SAFE-T Act, even a single unpaid traffic fine or penalty could prevent a person from renewing their driver’s license. Illinois residents no longer have to worry about losing their driving privileges for failure to pay a traffic fine or penalty.
- Failure to pay automated camera tickets – Previously, five or more unpaid tickets from red light or speed cameras could lead to a driver’s license suspension. This rule no longer exists, and motorists will not face license suspension for unpaid automatic camera tickets.
- Failure to pay abandoned vehicle fees – Leaving a vehicle on private property can lead to “abandoned vehicle” fees. Before the legislation, failing to pay abandoned vehicle fees could lead to a driver’s license suspension but this is no longer the case.
What to Do If Your License Is Suspended
If your driver’s license has been suspended, it is important for you to understand your rights and responsibilities in this situation. You may be able to apply for a Restricted Driving Permit (RDP). An RDP allows you to drive in certain limited circumstances such as driving to and from work or school.
Driving on a suspended license in Illinois is a serious offense, and one that should be avoided if at all possible. In addition to the fines and jail time associated with driving on a suspended license, the offender can have their license suspended for an even longer period of time.
Contact a DuPage County Driver’s License Reinstatement Lawyer
If your license was suspended or you were arrested for driving on a suspended license, contact Kane County license reinstatement attorney Patricia Magaña for help. Call the Law Office of Patricia Magaña, LLC at 630-448-2001 for a free consultation. Se Habla Español.