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Drunk Driving: A New Year’s Breathalyzer Could Cost You

Posted on in DUI

drunk drivingThis coming weekend is sure to be filled with parties focused on looking back on the year that was and ahead to the year that will be. While a champagne toast at midnight is common at many New Year’s Eve celebrations, a large number of revelers will continue to drink relatively heavily throughout the night and well into the next morning. Of course, those of legal drinking age are free to make their own choices regarding how much they have to drink, it is important to remember that getting behind the wheel after drinking can lead to serious legal problems.

DUI Checkpoints

Throughout the holiday season, efforts by law enforcement have been underway to combat drunk driving. One of the most common methods for doing so is the use of sobriety checkpoints on highly-traveled streets and highways during times when drunk drivers are likely be on the roads. If you encounter a sobriety checkpoint, you may be asked to submit to a battery of field sobriety tests. If the police have probable cause to believe that you are driving under the influence, you can be arrested on the spot.

Failing or Refusing a Breathalyzer

According to Illinois law, if you are arrested on suspicion of DUI, you will be likely be asked to submit to a breathalyzer test or other chemical tests to determine the concentration of alcohol in your system. If you submit to such a test and fail—a result of 0.08 percent or higher for a person of legal drinking age driving a private vehicle—your driving privileges will automatically be suspended for six months for a first offense. If you refuse to take the test, your driving privileges will automatically be suspended for 12 months for a first offense.

Repeat offenders face even longer suspensions. A second or subsequent failure within five years will lead to a one-year suspension, and a second or subsequent refusal will result in a three-year suspension.

Additional Penalties for Conviction

The suspensions associated with failing or refusing a breathalyzer test are handled by the Secretary of State’s office and are separate from the criminal penalties imposed by the court following a conviction. If, for any reason, prosecutors decline to pursue your case or if you are ultimately acquitted of DUI charges, the license suspension will remain in effect unless you take action to address it.

Happy New Year!

The entire team at The The Law Office of Brian J. Mirandola would like to wish you a happy and safe 2017. We ask you to keep in mind that if you or someone you love is arrested on DUI-related charges this weekend, an experienced Elgin DUI defense attorney at our office can help. Call 847-488-0889 for a free consultation and the guidance you need to protect your future.

Source:

https://www.cyberdriveillinois.com/publications/pdf_publications/dsd_a118.pdf

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