Aggravated DUI in Illinois and Conviction Penalties

The criminal penalties for aggravated DUI in Illinois.

By , Attorney · Thomas Jefferson School of Law

In Illinois, any felony driving under the influence (DUI) offense is classified as an "aggravated" DUI. All aggravated DUI convictions are subject to a maximum $25,000 fine, but other penalties vary depending on the circumstances of the offense.

This article discusses the various situations constituting aggravated DUI in Illinois and the penalties associated with convictions.

Felony "Aggravated" DUIs in Illinois

In most states, a standard DUI is a misdemeanor, but a DUI can be a felony when certain aggravating factors are present. Illinois follows the same basic system. However, Illinois uses the term "aggravated DUI" for any DUI that is a felony.

Aggravated Third and Subsequent DUI Convictions in Illinois

Third and subsequent DUI convictions are aggravated DUI offenses. The range of sentences are:

  • three to seven years imprisonment for third and fourth DUI convictions (class 2 felonies)
  • four to 15 years in prison for a fifth DUI (class 1 felony), and
  • six to 30 years imprisonment for a sixth DUI (class X felony).

However, the specific penalties you'll face for an aggravated DUI conviction depend on the circumstances.

Aggravated DUI with a High BAC in Illinois

If the defendant's blood alcohol concentration (BAC) was .16% or more on a third or subsequent conviction, in addition to other penalties, the minimum sentence is:

  • 90 days in jail and a $2,500 fine for a third DUI conviction, and
  • a $5,000 fine for fourth or subsequent DUI convictions.

In many cases, the prosecution will have blood or breath test results that show the defendant's BAC level.

Aggravated DUI With Minor Passengers in Illinois

A third or subsequent DUI committed by a defendant who had a passenger under the age of 16 in the vehicle is subject to a minimum of:

  • a $25,000 fine, and
  • 25 days of community service in a program benefiting children.

It's also possible for the driver to face child endangerment charges when minor passengers are present during a DUI offense.

License Suspension and Restricted Permits for Aggravated DUI Convictions in Illinois

A third DUI conviction results in a ten-year license suspension and a defendant must obtain a restricted driving permit (RDP) for five continuous years as a prerequisite for full license reinstatement.

For fourth and subsequent DUI convictions, a lifetime license revocation is imposed. However, in some circumstances, a defendant can apply for an RDP after completing five years of the revocation.

DUIs Resulting in Injuries in Illinois

A DUI resulting in great bodily harm, permanent disability, or disfigurement to another person is a class 4 felony. If a defendant is sentenced to imprisonment, it must be for at least one year but not more than 12 years.

DUI and a Prior Conviction for an Alcohol-Related Reckless Homicide Offense in Illinois

It's a class 3 felony to commit a DUI when the defendant has a prior conviction for:

  • an alcohol-related reckless homicide offense, or
  • a DUI that resulted in great bodily harm or death to another person.

A conviction carries a sentence of two to five years in prison.

DUI Resulting in the Death of Another Person in Illinois

A DUI that involved a motor vehicle, snowmobile, all-terrain vehicle, or watercraft accident resulting in the death of another person is a class 2 felony. Unless the court determines that extraordinary circumstances exist that require probation, the defendant must be sentenced to prison for:

  • three to 14 years if the violation resulted in the death of one person, and
  • six to 28 years if the violation resulted in two or more deaths.

There's a two-year license revocation for an aggravated DUI conviction that resulted in the death of another person. The defendant can reapply for a license after two years from the effective date of the revocation or two years from the date of release from prison, whichever is later.

DUI Resulting in Bodily Harm to a Passenger Who Was Under 16 Years of Age in Illinois

A DUI that involved a motor vehicle accident resulting in bodily harm to a passenger who was under the age of 16 years is a class 4 felony. A conviction carries:

  • one to three years imprisonment
  • $2,500 mandatory fine, and
  • 25 days of community service in a program benefiting children.

In these circumstances, the driver could also face child endangerment charges.

A Second DUI With Underage Passengers in Illinois

A defendant who commits a second DUI while transporting a person under 16 years is guilty of a class 2 felony. A conviction carries:

  • three to seven years imprisonment
  • a $2,500 mandatory fine, and
  • 25 days of community service in a program benefiting children.

The mandatory fine is $5,000 if a passenger under 16 years suffered bodily harm in a motor vehicle accident.

Other Aggravated DUI Offenses in Illinois

All other aggravated DUI convictions are class 4 felonies with a sentencing range of one to three years imprisonment. It's an aggravated DUI if the offense is committed:

  • while driving a school bus with one or more passengers on board
  • in a school zone, at a time when a speed limit of 20 miles per hour was in effect, and an accident results in bodily harm to another person (but not great bodily harm)
  • during a period in which the defendant's license was revoked or suspended for a prior DUI, statutory summary suspension, reckless homicide offense, or leaving the scene of an accident involving death or personal injury
  • while the defendant didn't possess a valid driver's license or permit
  • while the defendant knew or should have known that the vehicle was not covered by liability insurance, or
  • while transporting one or more passengers in a vehicle-for-hire.

Many of these circumstances can also lead to other criminal charges for the driver.

Probation and Conditional Discharge Sentences

Some aggravated DUI offenders can be sentenced to a term of probation or conditional discharge. Generally, probation and conditional discharge sentences require a defendant to comply with certain conditions of supervision and there's no jail time imposed.

However, a defendant convicted of an aggravated DUI who is sentenced to a term of probation or conditional discharge must serve a minimum of ten days in jail or 480 hours of community service.

Talk to an Illinois DUI Attorney

The consequences of a DUI are particularly severe when you're convicted of an aggravated offense. So, if you've been charged with an aggravated DUI, it's important that you get legal assistance. An experienced DUI lawyer can review your case and help you decide on how best to handle your situation.

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