When you’re arrested for driving under the influence, it’s a demoralizing and confusing time. But you can take steps right now that may help you keep your driving privileges, get your charges reduced or even dismissed, and avoid a permanent record. By contacting a Chicago DUI lawyer you can get help evaluating your unique situation to achieve the best possible outcome for your case. Below we introduce some relevant information to the DUI process, the possible defenses against a DUI charge, and recommendations for hiring an experienced DUI attorney.
Details of a DUI Arrest in Chicago, IL
The moment an officer suspects you of impaired driving is the beginning of the DUI process. An officer might observe you committing some traffic violation and stops your vehicle. After the stop, the officer will interact with you and your behavior might lead them to suspect that you are under the influence of drugs or alcohol.
If the officer suspects some sort of intoxication, they will ask you to step out of the car and perform a series of Field Sobriety Tests or submit to a portable breath test. In Chicago, the driver is allowed to refuse field sobriety tests and the portable breath test.
If you have been arrested on a DUI charge, call (800) 319-4955 or use the contact form to learn how a Chicago DUI lawyer can help.
After the initial stop, you might be placed under arrest and taken to the police station. At the police station you will be asked to take a breathalyzer test which measures your blood alcohol concentration (BAC), and once again, you are allowed to refuse taking this test. If your BAC is 0.08 (8%) or greater, you could be charged with a DUI. The good news is that even if your blood or breath test is against, you can still win your case.
In most cases, you will then be released on bond and given an initial court date. You will also be issued a notice that you driver’s licenses will be suspended in 46 days. The period of suspension for a first-time DUI offender is 6 months. If you had previously refused to take the breathalyzer test, then the suspension could be one year. If it’s not a first offense, the suspension numbers go up to 1 year and 3 years (if breathalyzer was refused).
IMPORTANT: Petition For Your License
You have 90 days after your arrest that you can petition for a special hearing to save your driver’s license from being suspended. This is a civil matter than is added on to the criminal charges of a DUI. In this administrative hearing, you must prove that there was some sort of improper police procedures going on. It’s sounds intimidating, but an experienced Chicago DUI attorney can help you sort through the details.
Chicago DUI Penalties
In recent years, you may have noticed the high profile campaigns that have been launched by the state of Illinois that speak out against drunk driving. There is a nationwide crack down on drinking and driving offenders. The prosecution is highly motivated to receive a DUI conviction and they are experts in their field. This is why penalties for DUIs in Chicago can be extremely harsh and can affect the rest of your life. An experienced Chicago DUI lawyer can inform you of all the possible defenses for your specific situation and give you a realistic picture for the out of your case.
Can DUI Charges Be Defended
There are many possible defenses that can be used to reduce DUI penalties or even to get a case dismissed. For example, if evidence was obtained illegally it can be thrown out of court. If chemical tests for your BAC level were implement improperly or otherwise mishandled they may not be used against you. In some cases, it may be proven that the police had no right to pull you over in the first place.
An attorney can help you determine whether evidence against you is admissible in court and if it isn’t then get it thrown out. A lawyer can also help you negotiate lower penalties after a DUI conviction, secure temporary driving permits, get cases dismissed, or reduce the severity of the charges. The sooner an attorney gets involved in your case the more they can do.
Find Help For Your DUI Case
If you’re charged with a DUI offense, you need the representation of an experienced and aggressive Chicago DUI attorney. Every case is unique. Ensure your Chicago DUI attorney is giving you the attention your case deserves.
Call us today for a free consultation at (800) 319-4955 immediately to protect your rights throughout the DUI process.