Drunk driving is a serious problem throughout Illinois as well as the rest of the nation. In fact, it is estimated that over 40 percent of all traffic related deaths are in some way related to drunk driving. As a result, the penalties for drunk driving are designed to discourage individuals from such activity. One penalty that often causes concern for individuals is the loss of the driver's license; driver's license reinstatement is often a primary concern once the dust settles and they are ready to move forward.
Typically, a first offense involves a mandatory three month license suspension, and a second offense calls for a mandatory 12 month license suspension. Additionally, if the individual refuses to comply with chemical testing, the driver's license is automatically suspended for a period of six months or more. These penalties become effective 46 days after notice. As with all criminal charges, the original drunk driving arrest can be challenged in court.
If the individual is convicted of drunk driving, the license will be suspended. Once the suspension period has expired, the individual can then apply to have the driver's license reinstated. This process involves completion of a required educational program, appearance before a hearing officer and payment of the reinstatement fee in addition to other requirements.
The best option is to avoid a drunk driving conviction in the first place. However, for those who have been convicted, the next step is to begin the Illinois driver's license reinstatement process. Experienced legal counsel can work with the individual to make sure that all appropriate steps are taken to achieve the best possible outcome.