Articles Posted in License Reinstatement

A conviction for a traffic ticket resulting from an accident, which caused personal injury or death, may result in the suspension or revocation of your Illinois driver’s license. 

We often receive requests for help from drivers who have been involved in personal injury or fatal accidents and, as a result of being convicted of a minor moving violation, have unexpectedly received a notice of suspension or revocation of their driver’s license from the Illinois Secretary of State.

In many of these cases, these drivers were assured by the court, a prosecutor or even their own attorney that by pleading guilty they would suffer no further legal consequences. However, under Section 625 ILCS 5/6-204(a)(4) of the Illinois Vehicle Code and Chapter 92, Section 1040.46 of the Illinois Administrative Code, a conviction for even a minor moving violation which is the cause of a personal injury or death may result in the suspension or revocation of your driver’s license and privileges.

The Illinois Secretary of State can suspend or revoke your driver’s license for a variety of reasons. A license suspension lasts for a set period of time. After it ends, you can automatically regain your driving privileges after paying a reinstatement fee to the Secretary of State. Depending on the reason(s) for the suspension, there may be additional conditions before full license reinstatement such as completion of a remedial driving course.

In contrast, a license revocation lasts for a minimum of 1 year or longer depending on the violation that caused the revocation and your overall record of previous violations. On or after the termination date of your revocation, which is called your “projected eligibility date”, you will need to appear for a hearing before the Secretary of State in order to regain any driving privileges. These hearings can be complex and often result in a denial. It should also be noted that you may be eligible to apply for a restricted driving permit during the period of suspension or revocation. In certain cases, regardless of your projected eligibility date for full reinstatement, you may be required to drive on a breath alcohol ignition interlock device (“BAIID”) for a period of 1-5 years before being eligible to be considered for unrestricted driving.   

A conviction for the following will result in an automatic revocation of your Illinois driver’s license:

The Secretary of State has enacted new rules, which became effective on January 1, 2022, addressing out-of-state petitions for reinstatement; formal hearing procedures; informal hearing eligibility; time limits to complete restricted driving permit and reinstatement requirements; designation of four (4) different types of restricted driving permit and standards governing each type; using the restricted driving permit for other reasons; breath alcohol ignition interlock device (BAIID) violations; definition of a “DUI disposition”; updated evaluations; opiate substitution programs; medical cannabis; and prescribed opiate medication.

Additional details regarding these new rules can be found on this earlier blog post.

Attorney Larry A. Davis of The Davis Law Group, P.C. represented the Illinois State Bar Association in negotiations with the Secretary of State’s office in finalizing these new rules. If you have a driver’s license issue and would like to discuss your case, feel free to contact us.

OUT-OF-STATE PETITIONS

ALL OUT-OF-STATE PETITIONS MADE BY WRITTEN APPLICATION INSTEAD OF AN IN-PERSON APPEARANCE WILL BE CONSIDERED INFORMAL HEARINGS – 1001.100(b)

Written applications by out-of-state residents will no longer be considered formal hearings conducted pursuant to 625 ILCS 5/2-118. Accordingly, these applications will not be required to be accompanied by the $50.00 application fee. Decisions from these informal hearings will not constitute final administrative decisions and, therefore, will not be subject to the provisions of the Administrative Review Act. 1001.100(b)(3) and 1001.300(a). 

Illinois residents are increasingly receiving text messages and emails from scammers claiming to be from the Office of the Illinois Secretary of State advising them that there is an issue with their driver’s license or that they have discovered an irregularity in their personal information.

These messages request that the person provide information such as their driver’s license number, date of birth, address, phone number and social security number. The latest of these messages replicate the Secretary of State’s website. The message usually includes a warning that the failure to provide the requested information will result in the ‘termination’ or ‘cancellation’ of the person’s driver’s license.

Anyone who receives such a message should be aware that they are the target of a scam. These text and email messages do not originate from the Illinois Secretary of State’s office. The Secretary of State does not email or text individuals seeking personal information.

You spent months preparing for a hearing with the Illinois Secretary of State to finally get your driving privileges restored after years of having a revoked license. You have done everything asked of you including the completion of your evaluation, treatment and classes.

Finally, the big day arrives and you appear for your hearing. As you walk out of the hearing room, you think everything went well. You eagerly wait for your decision to arrive. After several months of waiting and hoping, the Secretary of State has denied your request not only for reinstatement but has also denied you a restricted driving permit (RDP). You are devastated and confused.

The license reinstatement attorneys at The Davis Law Group, P.C. have represented thousands of drivers before the Secretary of State. A large percentage of our clients have previously had hearings either on their own or with another attorney and have been denied. As a result, we have had countless opportunities to review prior denial orders. Our experience tells us that there are many recurring reasons why people are denied driving privileges.

If you have had your license revoked or suspended in Illinois and you are not yet eligible for full license reinstatement, you may apply for a Restricted Driving Permit (RDP) through an administrative hearing with the Secretary of State. Likewise, even if you are eligible for full license reinstatement, you may initially be issued an RDP after your hearing prior to being granted full reinstatement.

RDPs are often called “work permits” because their most common purpose is employment. However, under the law, there are several types of Restricted Driving Permits that may allow you to drive for other purposes such as medical visits, education/school, child care, elder care, alcohol/drug-related counseling and, in limited circumstances, for “any purpose”. Restricted Driving Permits are issued only to those drivers who, after a hearing with the Secretary of State, are able to demonstrate that they are not a risk to public safety. Of course, there are a number of other factors taken into consideration by the Secretary of State before granting this type of driving relief. Depending on your background, an RDP may be issued for a period of up to 2 years.

An RDP is not a driver’s license although it is sometimes referred to as a “restricted license”. An RDP only allows you to drive for a specific purpose on certain days, hours and within a specific radius. If you are caught using a permit outside of these limits, you may be charged with driving on a revoked or suspended license depending on the status of your underlying driving privileges.

Being properly prepared for a driver’s license hearing with the Illinois Secretary of State is essential. Because of the complex nature of Secretary of State rules, it is important to understand the hearing procedures and requirements. Having an experienced driver’s license attorney by your side ensures that all aspects of the hearing are conducted properly and will lead to the best possible outcome.

The Secretary of State’s office conducts two types of hearings, formal hearings and informal hearings, for those seeking driving privileges after a driver’s license revocation or suspension arising out of a DUI conviction or summary suspension. In the majority of cases, a formal hearing is required.

What is a Formal Hearing?

The driver’s license attorneys at The Davis Law Group, P.C. have successfully represented thousands of drivers seeking restoration of their Illinois driving privileges. This includes drivers who live in Illinois as well as drivers who live in other states and cannot obtain a license where they live until their license is reinstated in Illinois. While there are a variety of scenarios, these cases often involve drivers who have had their driver’s license revoked after having been convicted of DUI (or multiple DUIs).

In Illinois, drivers who have a revoked driver’s license must request a hearing in order to seek driving privileges. In most cases, this is done through a formal hearing, where a hearing officer presides over the case and the Illinois Secretary of State is represented by a hearing representative. If the driver has a suspended driver’s license and wishes to seek driving privileges prior to the end of their license suspension, he or she is also required to have a hearing.

Often, drivers who have previously had a hearing before the Secretary of State and are denied reinstatement or a driving permit come to our lawyers for assistance in challenging the decision that they received. Typically, our law firm can help these individuals by addressing the issues that arose at their hearing. Our driver’s license attorneys are frequently able to obtain a favorable decision on their behalf after a new hearing.

There are a variety of possible consequences resulting from a second DUI arrest in Illinois. To a large extent, the penalties depend on the outcome of your first DUI. The majority of people arrested for a first DUI receive an automatic suspension of their driver’s license for 6 or 12 months depending on whether they failed or refused chemical testing. This is referred to as the Illinois Statutory Summary Suspension law. Additionally, many first DUI arrests will result in court supervision for a period of 1 to 2 years. If you successfully complete the conditions of court supervision (e.g. payment of fines/court costs, treatment, community service, victim impact panel, etc.), a conviction will not be entered.

However, in Illinois, you can only receive court supervision for DUI once in your lifetime. As a result, this means you face limited options on a second DUI charge. You will ultimately have the choice of pleading guilty and receiving a conviction (i.e. conditional discharge or probation), pleading not guilty and going to trial or seeking a negotiated plea to reduce the DUI charge, ideally, to the offense of Reckless Driving.

Criminal Penalties of a Second DUI

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