The Illinois DUI Laws and how a Lake County DUI Attorney can help you protect your Driver's License and defend your Lake County DUI Case
Where is Lake County, Illinois and who is prosecuting my DUI case?
Lake County, Illinois is located in northeastern Illinois, with Lake Michigan to the east, Wisconsin to the north and the City of Chicago to the south. DUI arrests are commonly made on the highways by the Illinois State Police or Lake County Sheriffs and are prosecuted by the Lake County State's Attorney's Office. Lake County also includes many cities, towns and villages including Waukegan, Wheeling, Mundelein, North Chicago, Highland Park, Gurnee, Vernon Hills, Libertyville, Grayslake, Lake Forest, Lake Zurich, Lake Villa, Riverwoods, Round Lake, Round Lake Park, Round Lake Heights, Round Lake Beach, Lincolnshire, Antioch, Wauconda, Lake Bluff, Zion, Lindenhurst, Long Grove, Hawthorne Woods, Lake Barrington, Ingleside and Deerfield. DUI arrests made by these local police departments are prosecuted by Village Prosecutors who are not state or county prosecutors.
The same Illinois law applies to all DUI cases in Lake County Illinois, but there may be very different policies and outcomes in a case depending on whether the DUI case is being prosecuted by the State's Attorney vs. Village or Municipal Prosecutors. One of the first questions I usually have as an experienced Lake County DUI attorney is where you were arrested for DUI so I can determine who is prosecuting you how willing they may be to negotiate a favorable disposition in your case. There are currently over 25 village or municipal prosecutors serving Lake County in addition to those cases prosecuted by the Lake County State's Attorney's office thus it becomes important to have representation with a local DUI attorney who routinely handles DUI cases in Lake County and knows the correct strategies to yield the best outcome in your DUI case. Your case will be assigned to a courtroom in the main Lake County Courthouse at 18 N. County St. in Waukegan, across the street from my office at 5 S. County St. in Waukegan. For confirmation of your DUI court location, court dates, court room and court appearance times please click here: Lake County Public Access Case Search Website.
Can I drive to work, school or other places during and after my DUI case in Lake County?
The short answer is Yes, but how you are able to drive and if a alcohol monitoring device will be required on your car is a deeper issue that varies from case to case. I like to think of DUI cases as having two parts. The first part is the criminal case as a first time DUI is a Class A Misdemeanor in Lake County Illinois carrying a possible punishment of up to 364 days in jail. Multiple DUI offenses or accidents involving great bodily harm may justify Felony DUI charges being raised. The second part of the Lake County DUI case is the Statutory Summary Suspension of your license that begins 46 days after your initial DUI arrest but can often be challenged before taking effect. It is crucial to consult with a Lake County DUI attorney as soon as possible after the DUI arrest as the petitions to challenge a Summary Suspension must be filed as soon as possible to make a more effective challenge and to possibly avoid the imposition of installing a costly monitoring device on the vehicle.
A statutory summary suspension is an administrative action taken by the Secretary of State on a person's Illinois driving privileges. If, during an arrest for driving under the influence, the person fails chemical testing or refuses to submit to chemical testing, his license will be subject to a statutory summary suspension. A person can be found not guilty of DUI and yet still suffer a summary suspension, because the issue with a summary suspension is that the person either failed chemical testing or refused to submit to chemical testing. The summary suspension issue is limited to whether the person took the DUI tests or refused not overall guilt or innocence of DUI.
A first offender who fails chemical testing will have a summary suspension for 6 months, while a first offender who refuses will be suspended for 12 months and if the person does not qualify as a first offender and he or she fails the test, the summary suspension will be 12 months. If the person is not a first offender and he or she refuses, the suspension will be for 36 months.
If a suspension is not rescinded while a DUI case is pending for any reason and a person is a first offender they will be eligible for a special permit to drive anywhere they choose without limitation during the period of summary suspension. The permit is called a Monitoring Device Driving Permit (MDDP). The Illinois Secretary of State explains the MDDP process in detail here: Illinois Secretary of State Monitoring Device Driving Permit Guide.
How can Local Lake County DUI Attorney Richard Albanese help me get the best result in my DUI case?
Prior to becoming a criminal and DUI defense attorney almost a decade ago I previously served as a prosecutor for over a decade handling thousands of DUI cases at the misdemeanor and felony level. I have been on both sides of countless negotiated pleas, motions, and trials before Judges and Juries in Illinois. I have studied the science behind DUI breathalyzer equipment and blood draws as well having prepared and cross examined expert witnesses at trial. I bring my more than two decades of experience in the DUI area of law to your case to not only advise you what your options are in strategically handling your case, but also answering your questions and trying to put you at ease as much as possible during this particularly trying chapter of your life. There is alot to navigate with a Lake County DUI case, but very little I have not seen before. I have no set or rigid approach to handling your DUI defense in Lake County. My strategy in obtaining the best result for you is guided by the evidence in your individual case and your needs and desires for what is most important to you given potential outcomes.
There are many factors that can affect the possible outcomes in a DUI case in Lake County. For an in depth discussion of specific DUI penalties and procedures in Illinois please refer here to the Illinois DUI Fact Book published by the Illinois Secretary of State. I outlined the different prosecuting authorities in the beginning of this section, but that is only one of many variables that I consider in evaluating the possible outcomes in your Lake County DUI case. Other important factors I consider include, but are no limited to whether this is a first DUI offense, whether you submitted to chemical testing (breathalyzer or blood), whether you took field sobriety tests, the basis of how and why you were stopped initially by the police, whether there was an accident involved, and other information from my professional review of the police reports regarding your case including possible squad and body cam footage. Based on my review of all the relevant information I can advise you if you have a case that has a fair chance of success challenging at trial or if your overall interests are better served by a negotiation of the charges and summary suspension. Please call me at 312-882-1973 for a free consultation and discussion of your case.
LAKE COUNTY COURTHOUSE FOR ALL DUI CASES
18 N. COUNTY ST., WAUKEGAN, IL 60085