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Reacting to a DUI Traffic StopEvery year, more than 20,000 people in Illinois are arrested for driving under the influence of alcohol. In a significant percentage of those cases, the party arrested is ultimately convicted of driving under the influence. While many people assume that a conviction is inevitable after they have been pulled over on suspicion of drinking and driving, that is factually incorrect. In reality, your actions while and after being pulled over can dramatically impact the likelihood of a conviction. Below we will examine how you should react to a DUI traffic stop. 

Steps You Should Take During a Traffic Stop

Seeing red and blue lights behind your vehicle is no enjoyable experience, but your ability to have some emotional fortitude can be the ultimate difference between potential jail-time and no criminal charges at all. Here are a few steps you should take during the arrest process. 

  1. Pull Over Safely: The worst thing you can do as you are getting pulled over is to make the situation worse by pulling over in an unsafe manner. Pulling over at high speeds can cause you to lose control of your vehicle and potentially lead to an accident. Pulling over on a blind turn or on a bridge can make it more difficult for other vehicles to avoid you and the officer. If you pull over in an unsafe manner, not only are you putting yourself in danger, but you are likely prompting more suspicion from the officer. 
  2. Do Not Panic: Remaining calm is one of the most important things you can do during a traffic stop. Panicking will likely lead to perspiration or tremors, which can lead to suspicions of illegal activity from the officer. Most importantly, though, panic can lead to erratic or aggressive behavior, limiting your ability to fight against a charge in court. Keep your emotions in check and let your attorney do the rest. 
  3. Understand Your Rights: If an officer asks for you to take a breath test, you have the right to decline. If an officer tells you that you would be breaking the law by not taking the test, they are either deceiving you or unaware of the laws in Illinois. While declining a breath test will result in loss of driving privileges for one year, it is not a criminal offense. Understanding your rights can be the most important step you take during a DUI traffic stop. 
  4. Try to Remember the Events: If you are in fact arrested by an officer, it is important to be able to analyze the arrest process with your attorney. If the officer forced you to give a breath sample, was verbally or physically abusive, or failed to read you your Miranda rights prior to questioning in police custody, your attorney will have a strong defense case in court. 

Contact an Oak Brook DUI Defense Attorney

At McMahon Law Offices, we understand just how traumatic a DUI stop can be. Whether you have been mistreated or charged with a DUI, it is time to seek out quality legal assistance. Our attorneys are dedicated to building a quality defense case for all of our clients, in the hopes of avoiding a conviction. If a conviction is ultimately unavoidable, we will do everything in our power to lessen the charges and help you regain your driving privileges as soon as possible. To schedule a complimentary initial consultation with a skilled DuPage County criminal defense attorney, call us today at 630-953-4400. 

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Understanding and Reacting to a Drugged Driving Charge Thousands of people in Illinois are charged with driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol each year. Earlier this year, the Illinois General Assembly passed a bill that will legalize recreational marijuana in the state. In other words, consumers will be legally able to purchase recreational marijuana as of January 2020. With the passing of the new bill, there will be a specific DUI task force established to decide how roadside testing will take place in order to test drivers for levels of THC. Below, we will examine what steps you need to take in the aftermath of a drugged driving charge.

Examine the Arrest Process

After your arrest, the first and most important step you can take is hiring a skilled and experienced attorney. Your attorney will help you establish a defense strategy while examining the arrest process for possible missteps taken by the law enforcement officials involved. According to Illinois state law, a driver can be charged with a DUI if they are tested with a THC blood concentration of five nanograms or more per milliliter. That being said, if an officer forced you to take part in testing without telling you about your right to refuse, the evidence gained from the test may be thrown out in court. While you will temporarily lose your driving privileges for refusing to test for drugs or alcohol, refusal is not a criminal offense. An officer must read you your Miranda rights if you are taken into police custody and questioned. Failure to notify you of your rights can result in dropped charges. Your ability to work with your attorney throughout the arrest process examination can make or break your defense case.

Understanding the Consequences

In Illinois, DUI charges come with the same legal consequences regardless of the substance used. If you fail a THC chemical test you will lose your license for a period of six months. That being said, your attorney can assist you in regaining your driving privileges by obtaining a monitoring device driving permit (MDDP). A second offense can lead to a mandatory one-year license suspension. Loss of driving privileges can drastically impact a person’s ability to maintain employment and live a high quality of life. If you are facing DUI charges, it is incredibly important to contact an attorney as soon as possible.

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Seeking Expungement for Your Criminal Record in Illinois When a person has a serious criminal charge on their permanent record, their life can be impacted in a number of ways. Not only will the perpetrator face the initial legal ramifications of the charge (potential jail-time, fines, and a loss of their driver’s license), but also potential difficulty securing housing, employment, or loan opportunities. If a previous conviction is having a significant impact on your life, it is time to explore your options. With many criminal convictions, expungement or sealing may be an option. 

What Is Expungement?

Expungement is the process of having a criminal offense removed from one’s permanent record. The ability to hide a previous conviction from prospective employers can be life-changing. There are a few important things that all clients should understand about expungement:

  • Not all people are eligible for expungement.
  • While an expungement will destroy all official records related to the criminal offense, it will not have any impact on previous news clippings or other forms of media related to the initial crime. 

All that being said, expungement can be life-changing as you look to secure a job, get admitted into a school, or secure a loan.  

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Understanding How a Reckless Driving Charge Can Impact You In Illinois, reckless driving is considered one of the most serious traffic violations a driver can commit. Reckless driving is defined as the act of operating a motor vehicle in a manner that displays a disregard for human safety. If convicted, a reckless driving charge usually constitutes a Class A misdemeanor. According to Illinois state law, a Class A misdemeanor charge can lead to up to 364 days in prison and fines as high as $2,500. Below we will examine a few of the violations that can lead to a reckless driving charge and the ways in which reckless driving can impact you. 

What Constitutes Reckless Driving?

A driver can be charged with reckless driving due to a number of dangerous traffic violations. The most common form of reckless driving is traveling at reckless speeds. In order for a speeding violation to constitute a reckless driving charge, a driver has to be apprehended while traveling 25 miles per hour faster than the posted speed limit. Recklessly passing other vehicles can also lead to a reckless driving charge. If a law enforcement official sees a driver aggressively tailgating, illegally passing (passing vehicles on a bridge or in a no-passing zone), or weaving in and out of traffic, the officer is likely to charge the driver with reckless driving. Less common forms of reckless driving include racing other vehicles, attempting to flee law enforcement, and knowingly driving a vehicle with hazardous issues such as faulty brakes. 

The True Impact of Reckless Driving

As mentioned above, a reckless driving charge constitutes a Class A misdemeanor. The implications of a reckless driving charge can go much further than the initial criminal charge. For commercial vehicle drivers, a reckless driving charge can lead to a suspension or complete loss of employment. For any driver, a reckless driving charge can lead to significant increases in insurance rates. It should be noted that there are a number of factors that can lead to a reckless driving charge being elevated to a felony charge. A felony conviction can lead to difficulty in securing employment, housing, or loan opportunities. If you have been charged with reckless driving, seek out the assistance of a legal professional immediately. 

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The Implications of Driving with a Suspended LicenseIn the state of Illinois, there are a number of traffic violations that can result in a license suspension or revocation. A driver can lose their license due to failing to pay tickets or child support or failing to show up to a court date. Yet, the most common reason for a license suspension or revocation is a conviction for driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs. According to Illinois state law, a first-time DUI conviction constitutes a Class A Misdemeanor and a one-year license revocation period. If a person is caught driving with a suspended license, the legal ramifications can be significant. Below we will take a deeper look at the aforementioned consequences. 

The Legal Ramifications of a First Offense

Driving with a suspended or revoked license is always a risky proposition. In Illinois, a first-time offender will likely be charged with a Class A Misdemeanor, which can result in:

  • 10 days in prison or 30 days of community service; and
  • Fines as high as $2,500.

The license suspension or revocation will also be increased due to the transgression. For DUI offenders driving on a revoked license, their revocation period will likely be increased by a year. If you are charged with driving with a suspended or revoked license, speak with your attorney immediately. 

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The Importance of Hiring a Skilled Attorney in Your DUI Case Every year, hundreds of thousands of Americans are arrested and charged with driving under the influence of alcohol. Here in Illinois, upwards of 20,000 Illinoisans are apprehended each year for inebriated driving. If a person is convicted of a DUI, their life can be changed forever. From potential jail time to loss of driving privileges, the legal ramifications of a DUI conviction should not be taken lightly. Hiring an experienced DUI defense attorney can make all the difference in your case. 

How an Attorney Can Help

When you hire a quality DUI defense lawyer, you are making a conscious choice to fight against the charges you are facing. A skilled DUI defense attorney can lessen the severity of criminal charges or help you avoid a conviction altogether. Here are just a few reasons why hiring the right attorney is critically important in your DUI case: 

  1. Loss of Driving Privileges: If convicted of a DUI, you will lose your driving privileges in some capacity. According to Illinois state law, a first-time DUI conviction will result in a minimum license revocation period of one year. A second conviction constitutes a five-year revocation period. While a first-time offender can purchase a Breath Alcohol Ignition Interlock Device (BAIID) and gain probationary driving privileges, the process of doing so can be long and tedious. An experienced legal professional can fight for your right to drive.
  2. Time Spent in Jail: When some people think of a DUI case, they believe that it is best to accept the criminal charges and move on with their lives. This assertion could not be further from the truth. A DUI conviction can result in jail time, and subsequent convictions will almost certainly lead to some time in prison. A first-time DUI offender will likely not face jail time, barring aggravating circumstances (a minor was in the vehicle or someone was caused significant bodily harm). A second conviction can result in a minimum of five days in jail. As the convictions pile up, so too does the possible time spent in jail.
  3. Someone to Fight For You: After being charged with a DUI, it is common to feel helpless. The legal process can be isolating, and the law enforcement officials in your case can be intimidating. A quality legal professional will not be deterred from examining every aspect of your DUI case, in hopes of helping you avoid a conviction. Were you operating your vehicle in a negligent manner, prompting a traffic stop? Did the officer explain your Miranda rights during your arrest? Did the officer use intimidating language or physical force to coerce you into chemical testing? In your DUI case, someone should ask these questions. A knowledgeable DUI defense lawyer will.  

Contact an Oak Brook DUI Defense Lawyer 

At McMahon Law Offices, we fully understand the manner in which a DUI conviction can change a person’s life. Because of this, we are prepared to do everything in our power to help you avoid a conviction. To schedule a complimentary initial consultation with a skilled Arlington Heights DUI defense attorney, call us today at 630-953-4400. 

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How a DUI Case Involving Bodily Harm Could Impact YouAccording to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), approximately 30 people die each day in drunk driving accidents throughout the U.S. Because of this, law enforcement officers are constantly on the lookout for signs of inebriated driving. In Illinois, upwards of 25,000 drivers were charged with driving under the influence of alcohol, throughout 2018. A DUI charge can drastically change a person’s life, impacting their ability to secure employment or find housing. A charge can be especially severe if an accident occurred resulting in bodily harm to another party. Below, we will examine the legal implications of a DUI charge involving injuries or even death to another person.  

The Legal Consequences

According to Illinois state law, a standard DUI charge constitutes a Class A misdemeanor. Those charges will be elevated significantly if a person is hurt in an accident and the driver is charged with inebriated driving. According to the Secretary of State’s Office, a DUI in which a person is caused significant bodily harm will constitute an aggravated DUI charge. It should be noted that other transgressions can result in a DUI being elevated to an aggravated DUI, such as driving under the influence without a valid license or on a license that has been previously suspended for a DUI conviction.

If a collision causes great bodily harm to a person, including disability or permanent disfigurement, one will face a Class 4 felony charge and complete revocation of driving privileges for a minimum of two years. In Illinois, a Class 4 felony conviction could result in one to three years in prison and fines as high as $25,000. Even though a Class 4 felony is the least severe of all felony charges, it is easy to see how a conviction of that magnitude could drastically impact one’s life. If a person is fatally injured by a person that has been driving under the influence, the driver will face Class 2 felony charges, potentially resulting in up to seven years in prison. 

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The Implications of Driving Under the Influence With a Minor in the Car In Illinois, more than 27,000 drivers were arrested for driving while intoxicated throughout 2017. If charged, a DUI can come with significant legal ramifications resulting in a mark on one’s criminal record, potential loss of driving privileges, and substantial fines. While any DUI charge should be taken seriously due to the punishments listed above, the charges can be even more significant if a driver is apprehended while a child is in the car. Below, we will take a deep dive into how a minor’s presence in your vehicle can increase the gravity of a DUI conviction

Driving With a Minor While Inebriated

According to Illinois law, there are a number of circumstances that can result in increased criminal punishment in a DUI case. For instance, if a driver is operating their vehicle recklessly (such as driving the wrong way on a one-way road), their DUI charge can be elevated to an aggravated DUI. One of the most common instances leading to more severe criminal punishment is a drunk driver traveling with a minor. 

While a first-time DUI offender’s charge will not be elevated from a Class A Misdemeanor if they are found with a minor (child under the age of 16) in their vehicle, they will face other consequences, including:

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The Benefits of Cooperating During a DUI Traffic Stop When a person is pulled over at night, it is common to feel a little panicked. Tensions can be escalated when a police officer asks whether or not you have been drinking. While many people are told that it is always best to deny that you have been drinking regardless of your alcohol consumption and refuse all chemical testing, we will examine some of the benefits of open cooperation with the law enforcement official. In the event that you are charged with driving under the influence, seek out the assistance of a legal professional immediately. 

Why Cooperation Can Help 

First and foremost, it is important to understand the ramifications of denying chemical testing. Many people carry a common misconception that if they simply do not blow, they will not face consequences. That assertion is incorrect. Yes, refusing chemical testing is not grounds for a DUI charge, but you will lose your driving privileges. In Illinois, a first-time chemical test refusal will result in a 12-month license suspension. A subsequent refusal to take part in chemical testing within a five year period of the first refusal will result in a license suspension of three years. 

Cooperating with an officer can also be critical in the event that you are charged with driving under the influence. If an officer testifies that you were friendly, cooperative, and polite, you may be looking at a less significant charge. In some cases, an officer may display signs of aggression towards a person that refuses to cooperate, leading to a drawn-out court process. Lastly, if you have not been drinking, your best option may be to cooperate, take a breath test if requested, and move forward. 

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How a DUI Conviction Can Impact a Driver Under the Age of 21 A charge of driving under the influence should never be taken lightly because the ramifications of a conviction can range from loss of driving privileges to potential jail-time. For drivers under the legal drinking age of 21, a DUI conviction can come with legal ramifications of increased severity. Alcohol is a leading risk factor in fatal car accidents among teen drivers, with more than 20 percent of all teen driving fatalities involving alcohol in some capacity. Because of this, law enforcement officials are constantly on the lookout for inebriated driving amongst teen drivers. If you or a member of your family have been arrested for intoxicated driving, it is time to seek out the assistance of a legal professional. 

The Legal Ramifications

In Illinois, underage drivers can be charged for simply driving with a blood alcohol content over 0.00. This state law is known as the zero-tolerance policy. According to the zero-tolerance policy:

  • An underage drinker’s first arrest with a blood alcohol content over 0.00 will result in a license suspension of six months; and
  • A second offense will result in a suspension of driving privileges for a two year period.

If your child is convicted of a DUI, they will face having a Class A misdemeanor on their criminal record. Not only will the conviction result in a two-year license revocation, but the charge could impact their ability to secure employment or be admitted to universities. Throughout 2017, a staggering 1,160 underage drivers in Illinois were arrested for driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol. If your child is facing a DUI charge, the first step you should take is consulting with an attorney you can trust.  

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How a DUI Conviction Could Impact Your Parenting Case When a person is arrested on DUI charges, it is important to recognize the monumental way in which their lives can be altered in the event of a conviction. Not only will a conviction constitute a Class A Misdemeanor and come with significant fines, but a conviction can also impact one’s ability to drive without restrictions and secure employment opportunities. In other instances, a DUI conviction can result in drastic changes to a person’s life, simply due to the timing of the case. Below, we will analyze just a few ways in which a DUI conviction could impact your child custody case, which Illinois calls the allocation of parental responsibilities. 

Implications of a Conviction 

When a parenting issue is taken to court, a judge will use a number of criteria to gain an understanding of which parent is most fit to meet the needs of the child. In Illinois, parents are awarded amounts of parenting time and decision-making authority based on their ability to display a certain level of responsibility and care towards the child. These are just a few of the ways in which a judge may consider a recent DUI conviction as they make their decisions:

  1. Irresponsibility: As the judge considers which parent should have the majority of parental responsibility, a large criterion they will consider is whether or not the parent is mature enough to raise a child independently. While driving under the influence does not mean that one is a bad parent, it certainly will not help your case as the judge considers your parental viability. 
  2. Substance Abuse: A DUI conviction is often the byproduct of one bad decision, but you can be confident that a judge will ask you questions regarding your use of substances, due to the recent conviction. You will have to demonstrate to the judge that you do not have a substance abuse problem and that the DUI was an unfortunate event. The last thing a judge wants to do is send a child into the arms of someone with a substance abuse issue. 
  3. Impact of the DUI Penalties: Because a DUI conviction constitutes a Class A misdemeanor, the impact on one’s life can be significant. For instance, a person can struggle to secure employment or housing opportunities. This may impact the way a judge views a parent as a provider. It should be noted that a parent with a restricted driver’s license essentially restricts the activity of the child, which may be taken into consideration as well. 

Contact an Oak Brook DUI Defense Attorney

At McMahon Law Offices, we are dedicated to assisting our clients throughout their criminal defense cases. In the case of a DUI, we fully understand the ways in which a conviction can impact a person long-term, and we will do everything in our power to avoid that legal outcome. To schedule a complimentary initial consultation with an experienced DuPage County DUI defense attorney, call us today at 630-953-4400. 

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Understanding the Ramifications of A DUI ConvictionThroughout the United States, hundreds of thousands of Americans are arrested for driving under the influence each year. In Illinois, more than 25,000 people are arrested for DUI on an annual basis. While driving under the influence of alcohol may be a common crime, a conviction can come with serious legal ramifications. Below, we will discuss just some of the ways that a DUI conviction can impact you. In the event of a DUI arrest, it is critically important to contact a criminal defense attorney that you can trust. 

How A Conviction Can Impact Your Life

When a person is convicted of DUI, the impact on their life can be severe. Recognizing this, it is paramount to work with a legal professional that will build a strong defense case in the hopes of ultimately avoiding a conviction:

  1. Loss of Standard Driving Privileges: According to Illinois state law, a first-time DUI offender will face a minimum license revocation period of one year. If the driver is under the age of 21, their license will be revoked for a minimum of two years. In Illinois, first-time DUI offenders may be eligible to regain their driving privileges after the installation of a Blood Alcohol Ignition Interlock Device (BAIID). The offender will be forced to pay for the BAIID as well as a camera system that will allow law enforcement officials to witness the driver testing their blood alcohol level. Prior to installation, the offender must also take part in a substance abuse treatment program or alcohol remedial education course. 
  2. Significant Financial Toll: There is no question about the fact that a DUI conviction is costly. A first-time conviction comes with a minimum fine of $500. The perpetrator will also be forced to pay court fees, as well as other expenses such as installation for BAIID devices mentioned above. Because the offender will have to go through court sessions and take part in a minimum of 100 hours of community service, a conviction can result in a significant loss of work time. 
  3. A Mark on Your Permanent Record: In Illinois, a first-time DUI conviction constitutes a Class A Misdemeanor charge, which will remain on the convicted party’s permanent record. Having a significant charge on your criminal record can impact your ability to obtain employment, housing opportunities, and secure loans. In short, the long-term impact of a DUI conviction can far outweigh the cost of the initial expenses.

Contact an Oak Brook DUI Defense Lawyer

Recognizing the manner in which a DUI conviction can impact a person’s personal well-being, our team at McMahon Law Offices is fully committed to fighting against your charges. Through thorough conversations with our clients and examination of the arrest process, we will work diligently to develop a defense strategy that can minimize the legal ramifications of the charge. To schedule a complimentary initial consultation with an experienced DuPage County DUI defense lawyer, call us today at 630-953-4400

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Three Common Strategies for DUI DefendantsWhen a person is arrested on DUI charges, it is common to feel helpless. The arrest process can be frightening, and the thought of fighting a DUI charge can seem nearly impossible. However, there are a number of ways in which a skilled criminal defense attorney can craft a defense strategy that could help their client avoid a conviction and subsequent mark on their criminal record. Recognizing that even a first-time DUI conviction results in a Class A misdemeanor, temporary license revocation, and a significant fine, an experienced defense lawyer will do everything in their power to see the charges dropped. If you have been arrested for driving under the influence, speak with an attorney as soon as possible.  

How to Fight a DUI Charge 

When you initially meet with your attorney, the first step you should take is telling them everything you remember about the arrest. The initial conversation will allow your attorney to examine avenues they may take to develop a comprehensive and compelling defense strategy. 

  1. Lack of Reasonable Suspicion: In order for a law enforcement official to stop your vehicle, they must have a reasonable suspicion that you are breaking the law. Common reasons for a traffic stop can include speeding to swerving from lane to lane. If you are stopped without reasonable suspicion, all evidence obtained after the initial stop will be inadmissible in court. In order for you to be arrested on DUI charges, the officer must have probable cause to believe that you are in violation of state DUI laws. 
  2. Challenging Officer Testimony: In most DUI cases, the officer will believe that the person in question is inebriated due to the presence of common symptoms. In some cases, though, those symptoms may not be indicative of inebriation. For instance, a person may have bloodshot eyes due to allergies or sickness. A person may be suffering from slurred speech or irregular movement due to a medical condition rather than being under the influence of drugs or alcohol. 
  3. Lack of Miranda Warning: While Miranda warnings are usually not a key aspect of DUI cases, they can play a role if a person is taken into police custody. If an officer does not recite the Miranda warning and a suspect says something incriminating while in police custody, the incriminating statement and any other statements will be inadmissible in court. Recalling the arrest process in its entirety can be critical to your attorney’s ability to craft a compelling defense case. 

Contact an Oak Brook DUI Defense Lawyer

At McMahon Law Offices, we fully understand the manner in which a DUI conviction can drastically impact a person’s livelihood. Understanding the ramifications of a conviction, we are prepared to do everything in our power to fight a conviction. If a conviction is unavoidable, we are prepared to guide you through the processes of regaining your driving privileges. To schedule a complimentary initial consultation with a knowledgeable Oak Brook, Illinois, criminal defense attorney, contact us today at 630-953-4400. 

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How Your Attorney Can Assist You Post-DUI Conviction In Illinois, more than 25,000 people are arrested for driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol on an annual basis. In some of these cases, an attorney can craft a strong defense strategy that will help their client avoid a conviction. These defense strategies can range from wrongful seizure to misdiagnosis of inebriation symptoms and, in some cases, can be incredibly effective. In other cases, a conviction is unavoidable. Below, we will go over just a few of the reasons why maintaining a working relationship with your attorney after a DUI conviction can be critical to ensuring a high quality of life. 

Appealing Your DUI Conviction

After your case has been settled in circuit court, it is common to feel hopeless if you have been convicted. In reality, it may be possible to appeal the outcome of the case to a higher court. Recognizing the fact that a DUI conviction can result in a significant mark on one’s criminal record and potential license revocation, an appeal can be the right decision in some cases. In the appeal process, a panel of judges will examine the evidence and determine whether:

  • The evidence was able to prove your guilt in absolution;
  • Any evidence was suppressed or should have been suppressed; or
  • The sentencing was excessive.

In order to provide yourself with a fighting chance throughout the appeal process, it is crucial to continue working alongside your attorney. 

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Examining DUI Arrests During Summer MonthsWith the summer months officially in full bloom, local law enforcement officials are on the lookout for inebriated drivers. It should come as no surprise that the number of DUI arrests is much higher during summer months when compared to other times of the year. A DUI can significantly impact your employment opportunities, approval for housing options, and ability to drive. Below we will take a deeper look into alarming statistics on drinking and driving during the summer, while also examining how a DUI could impact your livelihood.  If you are facing DUI charges, it is critically important to speak with a qualified legal professional immediately. 

Increased Surveillance for Summertime Drinking and Driving 

With so many people out enjoying various forms of outdoor recreation, there are bound to be an increased number of drunk drivers on the road during summer months. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), the Fourth of July represents one of the most dangerous days with regard to drunk driving. In 2017, 237 people were fatally injured in car accidents involving drunk drivers on the holiday. Recognizing this fact, law enforcement officials throughout the U.S. ramp up their surveillance for inebriated driving. 

In many cases, increased surveillance comes in the form of DUI checkpoints. It should be noted that it is not illegal for a person to turn around and avoid a checkpoint, as long as the turn is executed in a legal fashion. It is also important to note that it is not a criminal offense to refuse chemical testing, but the driver will face a one-year license suspension. The driver will be eligible for a Monitoring Device Driving Permit. 

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Developing a Relationship with Your Attorney in a DUI Case The ramifications of a DUI conviction can be life-changing. A first-time DUI conviction is a Class A misdemeanor in Illinois, which can lead to a significant fine, potential jail time and a mark on one’s criminal record. Outside of the immediate legal ramifications, the conviction can hinder one’s ability to land employment, housing opportunities, or loans. Recognizing the manner in which a person’s life can be impacted by a DUI conviction, it is incredibly important to hire a quality attorney. Once you have hired an attorney you can trust, it is time for you to begin developing a relationship and working on your DUI defense strategy. 

Working With Your Lawyer

In order for the attorney-client relationship to work to its greatest potential, the two parties must be in lockstep throughout the trial process. In order to develop a comprehensive defense strategy that will help you secure minimal legal punishment, you must be willing to work with your lawyer in the following ways:

  1. Be Honest: Working with your attorney is like speaking with your doctor. You want to provide your doctor with the most accurate information possible, in order for them to evaluate you properly. In legal instances, you need to provide your attorney with an accurate depiction of the events that led to your arrest, in order for them to develop the right defense strategy. Being completely transparent can be a difficult step to take but is an incredibly important one. 
  2. Focus on the Details: As your attorney goes over the events centering around your arrest, it can be helpful for you to bring out the details of the arrest process. Did the officer read you your Miranda rights once you were taken into police custody? What was the driving offense they cited for pulling you over? Do you have allergies or a medical condition that could have lead to a false diagnosis of inebriation? As your attorney prepares their defense strategy, the details can be the difference between winning and losing. 
  3. Trust the Process: As you approach your court date, you should understand the importance of remaining cordial and professional. If you lash out in court or make irrationally aggressive decisions, you could jeopardize the entire case. Remember that the trial process is not about your attorney, but about you. Your actions can make or break the likelihood of avoiding a conviction.  

Contact an Oak Brook DUI Defense Lawyer

At McMahon Law Offices, our team is entirely dedicated to representing our clients to the best of our ability. We understand the manner in which a DUI conviction can impact one’s livelihood, and we will develop a comprehensive defense strategy geared toward avoiding a conviction altogether. To schedule a comprehensive initial consultation with a skilled DuPage County criminal defense attorney, call us today at 630-953-4400. 

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Examining the Most Probable Causes for a DUI Traffic Stop When a police officer is patrolling the streets at night, they are on the lookout for all types of criminal activity. While surveying other drivers, they are most cautious of inebriated drivers. While a police officer may presume that almost every driver on the road at 2 a.m. is possibly under the influence, they are not able to pull over a driver for a traffic stop without a legitimate reason. Below, we examine the most common reasons why people are pulled over for DUI traffic stops.  

Likely Reasons for a DUI Stop

Once a police officer has pulled you over, it is likely that they will be looking for signs of inebriation. While you are not legally obligated to engage in conversation with the officer (simply offer them the necessary documents they need to process your driving information), the officer will be able to gather further information regarding your potential levels of intoxication, simply based on coming into contact with you. For instance, an officer will immediately look at a person’s eyes, smell their clothes and breath, and listen for signs of slurred speech. Because this process of gaining evidence can be critical in a DUI arrest, it is important to understand that a police officer is not legally allowed to pull you over unless you are violating traffic laws.  

The most common reasons people are pulled over in DUI traffic stops include:

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Factors That Can Cause A False Positive Breath TestAfter being charged with a DUI, it is entirely common to feel hopeless. In reality, the arrest is just the first step in the legal process. Through diligent communication with your attorney, you may be able to develop a strategy that can ensure that you avoid a conviction. One of the most common DUI defenses is a false positive breath test. Below, we will examine the most common reasons why a Breathalyzer could mistakenly indicate you are over the legal limit. In the event of a DUI arrest, speak with a legal professional immediately. 

Reasons for a False Positive 

If you are notified that you are over the legal limit of 0.08 blood alcohol content, it may seem like you have no choice but to accept your criminal punishment. In some cases though, a Breathalyzer’s results can show up as positive due to extraneous circumstances, such as:

  1. Medications: In some cases, a Breathalyzer may indicate that a person is intoxicated due to medications that a person has ingested. Most notably, cold and flu medications can cause a jump in a person’s blood alcohol content. In these instances, it is paramount to speak with your attorney immediately. 
  2. Medical Conditions: Unfortunately, some people are falsely accused of driving under the influence due to preexisting medical conditions. For instance, people with diabetes can have high levels of acetone in their breath, which can cause a Breathalyzer reading to show up much higher than the blood alcohol content actually is. In other instances, a medical condition can impact a person’s speech, balance, or mobility, prompting the officer to falsely believe they are under the influence of drugs or alcohol. 
  3. Types of Food: While somewhat uncommon, the digestion of certain foods can have a serious impact on a person’s ability to pass a breath test. Some foods such as pizza can result in a failed test due to the fermentation of the food. In other cases, ingestion of vinegar can falsely indicate that a person has been consuming alcohol. 

Contact an Oak Brook DUI Defense Lawyer

The ramifications of a DUI conviction can be life-changing. Outside of potential jail time, a conviction can result in significant fines, loss of driving privileges and difficulty securing employment. At McMahon Law Offices, we are prepared to develop a defense strategy that will make a conviction as difficult as possible. A DUI charge is a serious offense, and you deserve the most qualified defense lawyers in the greater Chicago area. To schedule a complimentary initial consultation with a skilled DuPage County DUI defense attorney, call us today at 630-953-4400.  

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Examining Common Misconceptions of DUIs and Alcohol ConsumptionA majority of the adult population in the U.S. consumes alcohol on a somewhat regular basis. Unfortunately, many people elect to drive after they have been drinking. Throughout 2017, more than 27,000 people were arrested on DUI charges in the state of Illinois. In other words, law enforcement officials are increasing surveillance and other tactics to fight the drunk driving crisis. There are a number of misconceptions related to the implications of a DUI conviction and alcohol consumption in general. Below, we will examine these misconceptions and explain their invalidity. In the event that you are charged with driving under the influence, you need to seek out quality legal representation immediately. 

  1. I Drank Some Coffee: It is not entirely uncommon for a person to have too much to drink and still want to drive home. In these instances, people regularly grab a cup of coffee, eat some food, or hop in a shower to prepare themselves for the drive. Many people believe that these tactics expedite the process of sobriety. In reality, the only thing that can make you sober is letting an appropriate amount of time pass. You may feel sober after your shower or coffee, but you still may be legally intoxicated. 
  2. I Will Not Lose My Driving Privileges: With the sheer amount of people that elect to drive drunk each year, it is safe to say that people underestimate the implications of a DUI conviction. Many people believe that a DUI charge will simply result in fines and legal fees, and that life will go on per usual. In truth, a DUI conviction can cost you your driving privileges. According to the Illinois Secretary of State’s Office, 91 percent of drivers arrested for driving under the influence lost their driving privileges because they were eligible for license suspension or revocation. Even a first DUI conviction can result in a one-year license revocation. For drivers under the age of 21, Illinois’ no tolerance policy results in an automatic license suspension. 
  3. I Did Not Drink That Much: While people enjoy going to the bar to watch their favorite team play or going to a restaurant for a romantic dinner and a few glasses of wine, it is important to know one’s personal limit. There are a number of factors that can impact a person’s level of impairment, including the person’s gender, their environment, their weight, the amount of food they have consumed, their alcohol tolerance, and their mood. Even if your friend has drunk the same amount as you, you may not both be experiencing the same level of intoxication.

Contact a DuPage County DUI Defense Lawyer

When a person is charged with a DUI, it is critically important to act quickly. The first and most important step one can take is hiring an attorney they can believe in. At McMahon Law Offices, we are confident in our ability to advocate for our clients’ best interests and assist in securing the most favorable legal outcome possible. To schedule a complimentary initial consultation with a skilled DuPage County DUI defense attorney, call us today at 630-953-4400. 

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Common Mistakes Made During a DUI Arrest and Trial No one likes being pulled over. When those lights turn on behind your vehicle, it is common to lose your composure. Yet it is important to understand that the decisions you make during your traffic stop can dramatically impact your case. If you are ultimately charged with a DUI, the decisions you make throughout the legal proceedings can alter the likelihood of a conviction. Below, we will examine some of the most common mistakes made during both DUI arrests and throughout the subsequent legal proceedings.  

Forgetting Your Rights

While many people assume that the most seamless way to navigate a DUI stop is through complete and total cooperation with law enforcement, that is not always the case. Obviously, if you have not consumed any amount of alcohol, you can expedite the traffic stop through cooperation. In other cases though, it may be important for you to exercise your rights. For instance, if a police officer is asking you questions regarding the amount of alcohol you have consumed, you have no legal obligation to answer them if you believe it might incriminate you. 

If a police officer requests that you take part in chemical testing at some point throughout the arrest proceedings, you are not legally obliged to submit yourself to testing. While refusing to submit to chemical testing is an administrative offense that will result in temporary loss of driving privileges, it is not a criminal act and will therefore not be seen on your permanent record. 

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