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The Ramifications of a DUI Resulting in Harm Illinois law enforcement officials are constantly searching for signs of drunk drivers. The concern over drinking and driving is warranted, considering the thousands of Americans that lose their lives each year due to inebriated driving. If you have been arrested on DUI charges, it is important to understand the way in which a conviction can impact your life. In DUI cases in which a person suffers significant injuries, the legal consequences can be incredibly severe. Below we will discuss the ramifications of a DUI resulting in injury

The Legal Consequences 

In Illinois, all felony DUI charges are classified as aggravated DUIs. If a person is injured in an accident involving a drunk driver, the inebriated driver will face felony charges. According to Illinois state law, a DUI resulting in great bodily harm to another party constitutes a Class 4 felony charge. If the defendant is sentenced to prison, they will face a minimum one-year sentence and up to 12 years in prison. If a person is charged with a standard DUI after previously being convicted of a DUI resulting in harm, the charges will be elevated from a Class A misdemeanor to a Class 3 felony. 

If a person is charged with a DUI resulting in the death of another person, they will face Class 2 felony charges. If the incident resulted in the death of one person, the defendant will face three to 14 years in prison. If multiple people were killed in the accident, the defendant could spend up to 28 years in prison. 


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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