DUI Lawyer Skokie

A Skokie DUI Attorney Explains The Law

Blog Authors

Latest from DUI Lawyer Skokie

In reviewing a traffic ticket or DUI, the court generally reviews all the facts of your case. In some situations, the type of road you were driving on may become important. For example, does an officer have probable cause to stop you for improper lane usage if the road is particularly twisty? The answer may be no. See our related post What is Improper Lane Usage Under Illinois Law. You may not legally pass a school bus that is signaling a stop. However, this law does not apply to certain types of roads. See our related post Passing a
When you are arrested for DUI, the police must read you the Warnings to Motorists, but this is not the same as your Miranda rights. The Illinois Secretary of State will try to automatically suspend your driver’s license on the 46th day after your arrest for DUI. The length of that suspension depends partly on whether you agreed to take a breathalyzer or other field sobriety tests. Before taking those tests, the officer must read you the Warnings to Motorists to inform you that your license will be suspended for a longer period if you refuse the tests. Illinois law…
The officer pulled you over for speeding. He ran a check of your license and issued the ticket. But the officer asked you to not to leave quite yet. You were forced to wait while the officer ran some checks or maybe brought in a narcotics dog. You were then arrested for an offense other than the original speeding ticket. Can they do that? What are the limits of a police stop? An officer may stop you for one reason and investigate you for another as long as he or she does not unduly prolong the stop. Authority for the…
If you hear a siren or see the flashing lights of an emergency vehicle, it should go without saying that you have to clear the way. Illinois requires that you move to the right side curb until the vehicle passes. If the emergency vehicle is stopped and flashing its lights, you must change to a lane that is not next to the emergency vehicle. If changing lanes is not possible, you must reduce your speed. Known as Scott’s Law, these rules seek to protect police officers who are too often killed by oncoming motorists while providing emergency aid. Scott’s…
A police officer can stop you if he or she has probable cause. An unlit headlight may be cause enough. But once stopped, an officer needs either your consent or a reasonable suspicion of wrongdoing to search your car. What is a reasonable suspicion of wrongdoing? The answer depends on how a judge sees the specific facts of your situation. A recent Illinois case provides a good example. In People v. Thomas, the defendant was stopped because of an obstructed windshield. An officer warned the defendant and returned his license. At that point, defendant’s first detention was over. However,…
As of July 1, 2019, a first offense for texting or using a cell phone while driving is now a moving violation. Before the change, a second offense incurred the moving violation. The rest of the law remains the same: It prohibits using an electronic communication device while driving. Such a device includes, but is not limited to, a hand-held wireless telephone, hand-held personal digital assistant, or a portable or mobile computer, but does not include GPS or a device that is physically or electronically integrated into the vehicle. Fines range from $75 for a first offense to $150 for…
You know you blew a stop sign, so you were not surprised when the officer pulled you over. But then the officer searched your car and found an open bottle of whiskey under the passenger seat. You are now under arrest for DUI. Did the officer have the right to search your car? What can you do? To search your car without a warrant, the officer must have probable cause to believe that your car contains evidence of criminal activity. The officer may also search if an item of contraband, such as open alcohol or drugs, is in plain view,…
The answer is yes. There is a procedure for asking the court to review the suspension. After you are charged with DUI, the Secretary of State usually suspends your driver’s license on the 46th day after your arrest. Once you receive the notice of a statutory summary suspension of driving privileges, you may request a hearing before the court. You must state the grounds upon which you are seeking to rescind or overturn the suspension. See 625 ILCS 5/2-118.1. One basis for rescinding is that the officer lacked reasonable grounds to believe you were driving under the influence of…
If you are charged with DUI, you should immediately contact an attorney because certain options to fight the automatic suspension of your driver’s license may only be available for a short time after your arrest. The Illinois Secretary of State automatically suspends your driver’s license on the 45th day after your DUI arrest for a minimum of six months. An attorney can file a petition to challenge this suspension at any time. However, the sooner you file the petition the better, because the state has to meet certain timeframes. Under 625 ILCS 5/2-118.1, you must be given a hearing…
You saw the school bus, but you honestly didn’t see the stop sign extending from it. So you drove past the bus, and next thing you know, a police car signaled you to pull over. You would never intentionally disobey a school bus sign, and the whole thing is extremely upsetting. What is the law? What can you do? In Illinois, you must stop before passing a school bus from either direction when the bus is signaling a stop by either a stop sign or flashing lights. You may not drive forward until the school bus proceeds, the bus driver…
You got into an accident after drinking at a party. You were taken to the hospital where your blood was drawn. The blood test clearly shows you were well over the legal limit. Can the police get those test results or are you protected by patient-physician confidentiality? In general, Illinois law prohibits your doctor from disclosing any informationacquired while attending you in a professional capacity that is necessary for the doctor to treat you. However, there are certain exceptions. Physician-patient confidentiality does not apply to blood tests performed while you are receiving medical treatment in an emergency room and can…
When the officer pulled you over, you were very compliant. Perhaps a little too compliant. You readily told the officer you’d had too much to drink. Is your DUI defense over before it begins? While statements like “I am drunk” certainly do not make a DUI defense lawyer’s job easy, such admissions, by themselves, are not necessarily enough to convict you. To prove DUI, the state must show the commission of a crime, known as the corpus delicti, and the identity of the person committing it. Under the corpus delicti rule, your confession alone cannot convict you without corroborating evidence.…
You live in Chicago, a Chicago officer stopped your car in Chicago, so you fully expected your court would be in Chicago. But to your surprise, your case is assigned to the Cook County Circuit Court in Skokie at 5600 Old Orchard Road. Why is that? What does it mean for you? Due to Cook County cost-saving measures, two branch courthouses in Chicago are now closed. As a result, some felony DUIs are now being sent to Skokie. The good news is there are many fine judges in Skokie who will give your case a fair hearing. In Skokie, your…
You stayed up late drinking the night before court. You thought you would sober up in time, but that didn’t happened. Can the court force you to take a breathalyzer? The answer is absolutely. In Illinois, you are required to appear at each and every court date for your DUI. If the judge believes you showed up for court under the influence of alcohol, you can be legally ordered to take a breathalyzer on the spot. Any test would be conducted outside the courtroom. If you fail, however, the judge could revoke your bond. Although you would not lose your…
You are at your first court date for a DUI. You glance nervously about the room and are surprised not to see your arresting officer. Will your case be dismissed if the officer fails to appear? In Illinois, the answer is almost always no. When you are charged with a minor traffic ticket, a judge could dismiss your ticket if the officer is not present in court. The reason is because the original court date for a minor offense is considered to be the date set for trial. A DUI, however, is a Class A misdemeanor. As a result, your…
You may enjoy hearing the song “The Long and Winding Road,” but you don’t exactly like driving on one. Because you had trouble staying in your lane, an officer pulled you over for Improper Lane Usage. Having smelled alcohol on your breath, you are now charged with DUI. What exactly is Improper Lane Usage? Did it give the officer probable cause to stop you? Whenever a road is divided into two or more clearly marked traffic lanes, you must drive entirely within one lane as nearly as practicable. Further, you may not move from your lane until you have first…