If the court convicts you of DUI in Los Angeles three or more times in 12 months, California’s Vehicle Code Section 13351 requires that the DMV suspend your license for three years. Illinois used to have similar license suspension laws for multiple DUI offenders, but a new state law has made it easier for drivers to retain their licenses or to get them back.
As of January 1, 2016, Illinois drivers who have lost their licenses for five years or more due to multiple DUI convictions may apply for a restricted driving permit. The Chicago Tribune reports that elected officials, law enforcement professionals and public safety activists “reluctantly” came to the conclusion that giving these individuals limited driving privileges may actually be beneficial for other drivers. The new law also does away with the mandatory 30-day license suspension for those arrested on DUI charges.
Has Illinois gone soft on DUI drivers? Not exactly. With the support of organizations such as Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD) and the Alliance Against Intoxicated Motorists (AAIM) legislators decided that it was better to allow motorists to drive legally on restricted licenses and keep their insurance coverages than it is to take their licenses away and have them drive anyway without insurance. According to the Tribune, MADD sent a letter to the state’s lawmakers saying that it was dangerous for Illinois to keep mandatory suspension laws since states that eliminated them have fared better than those states that have not.
Instead of license suspensions, MADD is pushing for the wider use of interlock ignition devices (IID) in Illinois and elsewhere.
To get their licenses back, multiple DUI offenders in Illinois will have to show proof that they’ve been sober for three years and that they have installed an IID (complete with a camera that shows who is actually breathing into the device). People arrested for DUI can also install one of the IID devices if they want to continue driving.
How should you respond to your recent and disarming charges? Call a qualified Los Angeles DUI defense lawyer (and ex-prosecutor) with nearly two decades of relevant legal experience.