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Illinois DUI and Ignition Interlock Law Information

All DUI offenders in Illinois are required to have a breath alcohol ignition interlock device (BAIID) installed in order to have their driving privileges restored during a period of suspension or revocation.   Both the Secretary of State’s Office in charge of licensing and the courts are involved in DUI-related suspensions and revocations.

Administrative Per Se Suspension:  At the time of your arrest, you lose your license temporarily, and can have it reinstated after waiting a certain amount of time and paying a reinstatement fee. There is a summary (automatic) suspension by the arresting officer when you fail or refuse a breath test. These suspensions take effect 46 days from the date of notice of suspension.

License Revocation:  If you are convicted in court of a DUI, or are involved in an alcohol- or substance-related accident causing injury or death, your license will be revoked, meaning your driving privileges are taken away with no guarantee of restoration. In order to have a revoked license reinstated, you must satisfy the Secretary of State that reinstatement is warranted

Your suspension has nothing to do with your court prosecution for DUI. You can be found not guilty of DUI in court but still have a suspended license, or you can have your suspension lifted but still be convicted and have a license revoked. It is illegal to drive in Illinois with a BAC of .08 percent or more. However, you can be convicted of DUI with a lower BAC level if your driving ability is impaired.

If you have had your license suspended you can apply for a Monitored Device Driving Permit (MDDP). This will allow you to drive with an ignition interlock (also known as a BAIID, or car breathalyzer) installed until your suspension is over.  If your license has been revoked, you cannot apply for an MDDP, and the revocation cancels any MDDP you might have received before your conviction. You can, however, apply for a Restricted Driving Permit, or RDP.  A BAIID will usually be required as a condition of the RDP.  The difference between the two types of Illinois licenses are:

An MDDP will allow you to drive anywhere at any time.

An RDP lets you to drive from home to work, including work-related duties. It also lets you take yourself or family members for medical care, to alcohol or drug treatment facilities, or to school.

PLEASE NOTE: Driving without a BAIID during your suspension in Illinois  is a Class 4 Felony, punishable by jail terms of up to 3 years and fines up to $25,000.  The cost of a LifeSafer Ignition Interlock is much less,  A BAIID must be installed on all vehicles you wish to operate.  It is illegal to drive in Illinois with a BAC of .08 percent or more. However, you can be convicted of DUI with a lower BAC level if your driving ability is impaired.

Get your license back in Illinois after a DUI

If this is your 2nd or higher offense you will be applying for a Restricted Driving Permit (RDP). Multiple DUI arrests will require either a formal or informal hearing. Informal hearings will be at regional Drivers Services facilities. Formal hearings are requested in writing with a $50 filing fee.

How do I get an interlock license?

  • If your license was suspended as a result of a conviction, you must apply for a restricted driving permit at the court in which you were convicted.

  • Complete any alcohol/drug education and/or treatment programs as ordered by the court.

  • Call LifeSafer Ignition Interlock at 800-634-3077 to schedule your ignition interlock installation and ask about money saving offers and discounts.

  • File proof of financial responsibility (SR-22 form) prior to reinstatement. Pay $500 reinstatement fee. Pass the driver’s license exam.

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