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Illinois Ranked 19th Among States with Strictest DUI Laws

 Posted on August 15, 2017 in DuPage County criminal defense attorney

Illinois Ranked 19th Among States with Strictest DUI LawsA recent study comparing state laws for driving under the influence of alcohol or other intoxicating substances concluded that Illinois has the 19th strictest DUI laws in the country. Arizona has the strictest laws, while South Dakota is the most lenient. According to the research findings, Illinois is stricter in its DUI laws than neighboring states Indiana and Wisconsin, which tied for 37th.  The study suggests that Illinois may have harsh penalties for DUI convictions but can in some ways be considered moderate compared to other states.


The study looked at the criminal penalties resulting from DUI convictions and practices meant to prevent DUI incidents. Researchers selected several metric categories and assigned each state a point value based on their compliance or strictness with the category. The categories included:

  • The minimum jail time after a first and second DUI conviction;
  • The minimum fines after each conviction;
  • How many convictions before a DUI becomes a felony;
  • The length of the time period during which multiple DUI convictions can compound charges and penalties;
  • Additional penalties for high blood alcohol content or child endangerment;
  • When an ignition interlock system is required and how long it must be used;
  • Whether a driver’s license is suspended or a vehicle is impounded after an arrest;
  • Whether alcohol abuse treatment is required;
  • Whether no-refusal initiatives are used to expedite searches and sobriety testing;
  • The use of sobriety check points; and
  • How frequently insurance companies raised rates on clients with DUI convictions.

Illinois Results

The study separately scored states on their DUI criminal penalties and prevention efforts before combining the scores to determine an overall ranking. Illinois was ranked 31st in criminal penalties but fourth in prevention. Key factors for Illinois include:

  • No minimum sentence for a first DUI conviction and a five-day minimum for a second conviction;
  • A DUI becoming a felony after a third offense;
  • A 180-day license suspension but no vehicle impoundment;
  • Mandatory ignition interlock use for one year after conviction;
  • Mandatory alcohol assessment after conviction; and
  • The use of sobriety checkpoints and no-refusal sobriety testing.

The study claims that Illinois does not have a minimum fine for first and second DUI convictions. However, there is a mandatory driver’s license reinstatement fee of $500, as well as fees for using the ignition interlock device.

DUI Defense

A DUI charge in Illinois is a serious problem for defendants, and a conviction can result in harsh penalties. A DuPage County criminal defense attorney with Stephen A. Brundage, Attorney at Law, will protect your rights during your DUI trial and help you reach a satisfactory outcome. Schedule an appointment by calling 630-260-9647.


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