In the state of Illinois, a DUI conviction comes with significant legal consequences. If convicted, a first-time offender will face Class A misdemeanor charges, fines up to $2,500, and up to one year in prison. It should also be noted that a DUI conviction can impact a person’s car insurance payments, ability to legally and freely drive, and even their employment status. While these may seem like steep criminal punishments, there are a number of aggravating factors that can elevate a DUI charge to an aggravated DUI and result in even stronger charges in a DUI case. Below we will examine some of the most common aggravating factors in Illinois, and the impact of an aggravated DUI conviction.
In the state of Illinois, a person will be convicted of driving under the influence, if they are apprehended while operating a motor vehicle with a blood alcohol concentration of 0.08 or higher. That being said, if aggravating factors are present, the DUI charge will be elevated from a misdemeanor to a felony and be classified as an aggravated DUI. The severity of the felony charges will depend on the aggravating factors, but in most cases, the driver will face Class 4 felony charges. It should be noted that a person convicted of an aggravated DUI may face a one- to three-year prison sentence.
The most common aggravating factors in DUI cases involve either bodily harm or a previous conviction. If a person has two previous DUI convictions on their record and is charged with a third DUI, the third DUI will be elevated to an aggravated DUI, thus meaning the defendant will face felony charges. If a person causes great bodily harm to another party while driving while inebriated, they will be charged with a felony DUI. Other common aggravating factors include driving inebriated while your license is suspended or revoked due to a previous DUI, and driving without a proper license.
A DUI conviction can drastically change a person’s life, especially when they are facing felony charges. At J. Aldrich Law, P.C., our firm is dedicated to developing comprehensive defense strategies for each and every one of our clients. If you have been charged with a DUI, you need an attorney that you can believe in. To schedule a free consultation with a knowledgeable DuPage County criminal defense attorney, call us today at 630-953-3000.