Did you make the mistake of drinking and driving and are now worried about facing a DUI? If you have been charged with a DUI, you may be feeling overwhelmed. It is important to understand that even as a first-time offender, the legal consequences of a DUI can be severe. In most states, a first-time DUI is considered a misdemeanor offense.
Driving under the influence or DUI is not legal in Illinois. It essentially means that a person is in control or possession of a moving vehicle while impaired by alcohol or drugs, even if it is prescribed medication. A driver with a blood-alcohol content or BAC of .08 or more could be arrested and charged with a DUI. The same is true if the driver is under the influence of other intoxicating substances, including cannabis prescribed for medicinal reasons.
First-time DUI Conviction Consequences
The penalties for a first-time DUI vary depending on the circumstances of each case. If you are convicted of driving under the influence of alcohol or another controlled substance these are some of the legal ramifications you could face if you are a first-time offender:
- If your BAC was 0.16 percent or higher you must complete a minimum of 100 hours of community service and pay a minimum fine of $500
- If you are convicted and were transporting a child 16 years old or younger, you could be looking at up to six months in jail, 25 days of community service in a program that benefits children, and a minimum fine of $1,000.
- If this is your first DUI offense you could also have your driver’s license suspended for six months
As a first-time offender, you would be eligible for a Monitoring Device Driving Permit (MDDP). The special permit would allow you to drive anywhere at any time as long as the vehicle has a breath alcohol ignition interlock device or BAIID during the duration of the restricted driving permit. This device requires the driver to blow into a breathalyzer before starting the car. The device will alert the Secretary of State’s office if a driver tries to drive under the influence or tampers with the device. If you do not want the interlock device installed then you cannot drive during the period in which your license is suspended. A camera on the BAIID is also required to record an image of the driver performing the breath test.
Additionally, as a first offender, if you refuse a chemical test, your driver’s license will be suspended for one year. Under these circumstances, you are still eligible for an MDDP.
Contact an Elgin, IL, DUI Lawyer
A DUI charge should not be taken lightly even if this is your first offense. At [[title]], we know there is a lot at stake. A skilled Kane County DUI attorney can help you avoid harsh legal consequences. Call [[phone]] for a free consultation.