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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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The Impact of a DUI Charge in Illinois According to statistics compiled by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), an average of 29 Americans die every day in car accidents involving impaired drivers. Due to the sheer number of fatalities caused by inebriated drivers, it should come as no surprise that law enforcement officials are always on the lookout for drunk drivers. In Illinois, driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol can come with severe legal consequences. If you have been charged with a DUI, it is important to seek out quality legal representation as soon as possible. 

Consequences of a Conviction

Illinois classifies a first DUI as a class A misdemeanor. If convicted, a class A misdemeanor could lead to:

  • A maximum of 364 days in prison;
  • Fines up to $2,500; and
  • A one-year driver's license suspension.

In certain situations, a first-time offender can face increased criminal punishment. If an offender has a blood alcohol content (BAC) of .16 or higher or is carrying a passenger under the age of 16, they will face a minimum of six months in prison, along with mandatory community service hours.  

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DuPage County DUI defense lawyersIn Illinois, a driver who is arrested for driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs (DUI) faces two penalties. First, there is the criminal charge, punishable by fines, jail time, and other penalties. Second, there is an administrative sanction, the statutory summary suspension of your driver’s license. Most people know they need to fight the criminal charge. But did you know that you can also fight the statutory summary suspension?

Understanding the Statutory Summary Suspension Law

If you have been arrested on suspicion of DUI, Illinois law requires you to submit to chemical testing for drugs and/or alcohol (625 ILCS 5/11-501.1). If you refuse to be tested, the penalty is the statutory summary suspension of your driver’s license for a minimum of one year. If you test over the legal limit for alcohol, cannabis, or another controlled substance, your driver’s license will be suspended for a minimum of six months.

If you refuse or fail chemical testing, the police will take your Illinois driver’s license and give you a receipt that allows you to continue driving legally for the next 45 days. On the 46th day, the suspension automatically takes effect.

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Oak Brook DUI defense attorneyIt is important to understand what you are risking when you drive under the influence of alcohol or drugs in Illinois. State law categorizes even a first-time DUI as a class A misdemeanor crime, which is punishable by up to one year in jail, among other penalties. A more serious form of DUI, known as aggravated DUI, is a felony for which a judge can impose a sentence of multiple years in state prison.

However, those are maximum penalties, not the most likely. By looking at historical data, we can assess the likelihood that someone convicted of DUI will actually spend time in county jail or state prison. The circumstances of a first-time DUI will have a significant impact on the likelihood of your spending time in jail.

Jail Time Is Unlikely for Misdemeanor First DUIs in Illinois

Circumstance 1: First Offense with Successful Court Supervision. For a first-time misdemeanor DUI, the court may allow to you plead guilty and receive court supervision. If you fulfill all the requirements set by the court and successfully complete the supervision period, no DUI conviction will be entered on your criminal record. The court may require you to perform community service or pay fines, but the penalties will not include jail time or revocation of your driver’s license. Note that you will still have to serve out any statutory summary suspension of your driver’s license.

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DuPage County DUI defense attorneysWhen someone is arrested for driving under the influence (DUI), one of their biggest fears is the possibility of spending time in jail. There are two ways you could spend time in jail. First, if you are arrested for a DUI and cannot make bail, or if you violate the conditions of your bail, you could be held in jail until your case is settled. Second, if you are convicted of DUI, part of your sentence could include jail time.

Fortunately, recent changes in Illinois law and the increased use of electronic monitoring devices have significantly reduced the likelihood that DUI offenders will have to spend time in jail.

Misdemeanor DUI Arrest: Usually No Jail, No Bail

When arrested for a misdemeanor DUI in Illinois, most people are processed and immediately released on their own recognizance without having to pay bail. This includes most first-time and second-time DUI arrestees charged with a misdemeanor offense.

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DuPage County DUI defense lawyersWith over 900,000 residents, heavy traffic is a fact of life for DuPage County drivers. It also means you have a good chance of being in a traffic accident. Whenever an accident involves significant vehicle damage or personal injury, Illinois law requires you to summon the police and file an accident report. Even if you were not at fault in causing the accident, you could still find yourself in serious trouble. If you consumed alcohol, marijuana, certain prescription drugs, or any other intoxicants before getting behind the wheel, you could be charged with driving under the influence.

Statistics on Vehicle Collisions and Children in DuPage County

DuPage County reported about 21,000 collisions involving over 42,000 vehicles in 2016, an increase of 16 percent from 2011. Given that 37 percent of DuPage County households have children, around one-third of collisions in the county likely involve children.

In other words, if you drive while intoxicated in DuPage County, there’s a strong probability that you will get into a collision that involves a child.

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Illinois DUI defense lawyerImagine this scenario: You had a few drinks uptown, started driving home, and got into a car accident. Do you know the correct actions to take next? Do you understand what can happen if the police have reasonable cause to arrest you for driving under the influence (DUI)? It is important for every driver to know what to do in this type of situation, even if you just had one drink and were not legally intoxicated at the time of the accident.

Do You Have to Call the Police to an Accident Scene in Illinois?

If you have a single-car accident, you only need to call the police and file an accident report if there is over $1,500 worth of property damage.

If your car collides with another motor vehicle or person, Illinois law requires you to stop, render necessary aid, and exchange identification and insurance information. The police must be called to the scene if there is property damage over $1,500 or if anyone is injured or killed.

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Illinois DUI defense lawyersWhen a driver is suspected of driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol, the police will do some preliminary tests, roadside. If the police believe they have probable cause for a DUI arrest, the driver will then be taken to a nearby police station (or sometimes to a hospital) for chemical testing. When the driver is finally released from police custody, yet another problem must be faced: what happened to their car?

Vehicles Used in DUI Typically End Up in an Impound Lot

Every police department has one or more authorized companies that can be summoned to tow and store vehicles that have been, for example, wrecked in an accident, illegally parked, or left at roadside following a DUI arrest. The police will inform a driver arrested for DUI where their car has been towed.

Towing and storage fees alone can easily add up to hundreds of dollars. The city or county where the DUI occurred may also charge an administrative fee since a city police officer or sheriff’s deputy had to take the time to arrange the towing.  In DuPage County, the administrative fee alone can be as high as $500.

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