In the state of Illinois, it is considered a per se offense to be operating a motor vehicle with a blood alcohol concentration over 0.08%. Should a person be found guilty of having this level of BAC while driving a car, they will be in danger of facing not only serious criminal DUI penalties, but also the possibility of civil actions taken from them as well. Many people do not realize, but should a person be found guilty of failing chemical testing (meaning that they had a BAC above the legal limit), if they rejected the test or if they did not complete it, they will suffer from a suspension of driving privileges.
Secretary of State Hearings: Protecting Your Driving Privileges
In the state of Illinois, the hearing that deals with the future of your driver’s license is an independent process from the criminal process that will deal with the question of your guilt. Held by the teamwork of the Secretary of State’s office and county state’s attorneys, this hearing will be an administrative driver’s license revocation – not the result of a criminal penalty.
Should a defendant wish to contest the suspension, it is required that they submit a written request along with a filing fee of $50. If they do not make a formal request of the hearing and if it is determined that there is sufficient evidence, the revocation can be upheld without the hearing.
In 1986, the Illinois Supreme Court ruled that this does not affect a citizen’s right to due process as driving is to be considered a privilege, not a right. Beyond this, it was determined that while it is a defendable privilege, the overall safety on the state’s roads were of greater concern. Should the defendant not request the hearing, it is to be treated as if they simply forfeit the chance.
Why hire a Chicago criminal lawyer for DUI defense?
If you have been arrested for drunk driving, it is in your best interests to get the involvement of an experienced Chicago criminal defense attorney that you can truly rely on. At the Law Offices of Michael P. Schmiege, they remain dedicated to providing their clients the committed and trustworthy legal assistance when they need it most. Should you choose to work with them, you will not have to be concerned about the manner in which your case is handled. Instead, you will be able to be confident knowing that they will go the distance in their efforts to provide you with the high-quality assistance that is needed to combat the charges you are facing. Beyond this, it is important to realize that they will also be able to help you in the Secretary of State Hearing to deal with the issue of your driving rights.
Contact a Chicago DUI lawyer from the Law Offices of Michael P. Schmiege today to learn more about the Secretary of State Hearing.