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.