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Illinois DUI Laws

Illinois law is quite strict with regard to driving under the influence (DUI) of alcohol or other impairing substances. Even if you are not convicted of the crime, you will lose your driver's license for one year if you refuse to submit to a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) test -- or three years if you refuse a second time. And if you are convicted of DUI in Illinois, you may be sentenced to as much as one year in jail and a $2,500 fine for the first offense. If you are a first-time offender, you may apply for a breath alcohol ignition interlock device (BAIID) to use for driving to work and other destinations deemed necessary. 

While it's best to avoid DUI charges altogether, this article will help you better understand the law and plan your next steps should you get arrested. 

Illinois DUI Laws: Blood Alcohol Concentration (BAC) Limits and Implied Consent

"Per Se" BAC Limit 0.08 Percent
Zero Tolerance (Underage) BAC Limit 0.00 Percent
Enhanced Penalty (Aggravated) BAC Limit 0.16 Percent
Implied Consent to Submit to BAC Test? Yes

Illinois DUI Laws: Select Penalties

Minimum License Suspension or Revocation (1st, 2nd, 3rd offense) Pre-conviction: 3 months / 1 year / 1 year;
Post-conviction: 1 year / 5 years / 10 years
Mandatory Alcohol Education, Assessment and Treatment Both
Vehicle Confiscation Possible? Yes
Ignition Interlock Device Possible? Yes (Required for repeat offenders, and often when granting restricted license)

Note: State laws are always changing through legislative, judicial, or other means. While FindLaw works hard to ensure the accuracy of its legal resources, it's a good idea to thoroughly research the law or check with an attorney to make sure you have the most recent information.

Illinois DUI Resources

  • Illinois DUI Statute: Driving while under the influence of alcohol, other drug or drugs, intoxicating compound or compounds or any combination thereof. (625 ILCS 5/11-501)
  • DUI Fact Book - Detailed information on Illinois DUI laws, penalties, along with statistics and education information on drunk driving (Illinois Secretary of State).
  • Road to Reinstatement - Pamphlet charting the path necessary to license reinstatement after a DUI (Illinois Secretary of State).
  • Breath Alcohol Ignition Interlock Device (BAIID) - Summary of Illinois's BAIID program for DUI offenders, including fees and providers (
  • Monitoring Device Driving Permit - Information about how to obtain a monitoring device driving permit in Illinois, required for BAIID use (
  • Restricted Driving Permit - Information about how to obtain a restricted driving permit in Illinois, required for more repeat offenders (
  • DUI Statistics - Historical data with regard to alcohol-related accidents and fatalities in Illinois (CyberDriveIllinois).

Have Your Case Reviewed for Free by a DUI Attorney

If you are arrested for driving under the influence, the prosecution will use its considerable resources to make sure it gets a conviction. Therefore, you'll probably want to hire an attorney. Even if you don't challenge the underlying charges, your attorney will know how to secure the best possible outcome. Learn more about your legal options today by

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Contact a qualified DUI attorney to make sure your rights are protected.

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Can I Solve This on My Own or Do I Need an Attorney?

  • Complex DUI situations usually require a lawyer
  • DUI defense attorneys can challenge Breathalyzer/Intoxilyzer or blood test results
  • A lawyer can seek to reduce or eliminate DUI penalties
  • A lawyer can help get your license back

Get tailored advice and ask your legal questions. Many attorneys offer free consultations.


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