Illinois DUI Penalties

In Illinois, it’s unlawful for a person to drive or be in “actual physical control” of a motor vehicle:

  • With A blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of at least .08%
  • while under the influence of alcohol
  • While under the influence of alcohol, intoxicating compounds, drugs, or a combination thereof to the extent that renders the person incapable of driving safely
  • with any amount of a controlled substance in the person’s blood, urine, or other bodily substance, or
  • With a tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) concentration of five nanograms or more in the blood or ten nanograms or more in another bodily substance. And within two hours of driving or being in actual physical control of a vehicle.

So, you can get a DUI based on actual impairment or the number of substances (drugs or alcohol) in your system.

Penalties Imposed for Convictions

A driving under the influence (DUI) arrest typically leads to an administrative “statutory summary suspension” of an offender’s license under Illinois’s implied consent law. When a conviction occurs in court, criminal penalties and administrative consequences apply.

Criminal Penalties

Generally, the criminal penalties imposed for DUI convictions are more severe if:

  • the defendant’s BAC was .16% or more (get an idea of how many drinks it takes)
  • there was a passenger under the age of 16 in the vehicle, or
  • the defendant has prior DUI convictions.

The chart below details the minimum and maximum penalties for first, second, and third DUI convictions.

1st offense 

2nd Offense 

3rd Offense 

Jail and Community Service

1st offense 

Maximum: 364 days

Six months (if a passenger is under 16 years)

100 hours of community service (if BAC .16% or more)

2nd Offense 

Five days (or 240 hours of community service) to 364 days

Minimum: 2 days (if BAC .16% or more)

Ten days (or 480 hours of community service) to 7 years (if a passenger is under 16 years)

3rd Offense 

Ten days (or 480 hours of community service) to 7 years

Minimum: 90 days (if BAC .16% or more)


1st offense 

Maximum: $2,500

Minimum: $500 (if BAC .16% or more) and $1,000 (if passenger under 16 years)

2nd Offense

Maximum: $2,500

Minimum: $1,250 (if BAC .16% or more)

$2,500 to $25,000 (if passenger under 16 years)

3rd Offense

Maximum: $25,000

Minimum: $2,500 (if BAC .16% or more) and $25,000 (if passenger under 16 years)

License Revocation

1st offense 

One year (2 years if under 21 years of age)

2nd Offense

Five years

3rd Offense

Ten years

Additionally, all DUI offenders who had a passenger under the age of 16 in the vehicle at the time of the Offense must complete 25 days of community service in a program benefiting children.

Implied Consent and Refusing Chemical Testing in Illinois

Under Illinois’s implied consent law, all drivers consent to giving a chemical test of breath, blood, urine, or another bodily substance if there’s probable cause to believe the person is under the influence.

The Illinois Secretary of State will automatically suspend the license of any motorist who fails or refuses to submit to chemical testing. This administrative suspension is known as a “statutory summary suspension.”

Generally, a person fails a chemical test if it discloses:

  • a BAC of .08% or more
  • five nanograms or more of THC per milliliter of blood or ten nanograms or more per milliliter of another bodily substance, or
  • Any amount of a controlled substance in the person’s blood, urine, or other bodily substance.

A driver under 21 years of age is subject to a zero-tolerance suspension if a chemical test discloses a BAC of more than .00% but less than .08%. The statutory summary suspension applies to an underage offender whose BAC is .08% or more.

Motorists who fail or refuse to submit to chemical testing face the following suspension periods:

1st Offense

2nd Offense

3rd Offense 

Suspension Period for Failed Test 

1st Offense 6 months

2nd Offense 1 year

3rd Offense  1 year

Suspension Period for Test Refusal 

1st Offense 1 year

2nd Offense 3 years

3rd Offense 3 years

Suspension Period for Failed Test (Underage)

1st Offense 3 months 

2nd Offense 1 year

3rd Offense 1 year 

Suspension Period for Test Refusal (Underage)

1st Offense 6 months

2nd Offense 2 years

3rd Offense 2 years

For purposes of Illinois’s implied consent law, a first offender is a person who hasn’t had a prior DUI conviction or a statutory summary conviction within five years of the current Offense.

Other Penalties Imposed for DUI Convictions in Illinois

All DUI offenders must complete an alcohol/drug evaluation. The offender must meet the recommended treatment program if the assessment indicates a substance abuse problem. Offenders are also required to attend a victim impact panel (VIP), a panel comprised of victims of DUI offenders that focuses on the consequences of DUI accidents. The defendant is usually responsible for all evaluation, treatment, and VIP fees.

For second and subsequent convictions, the defendant must hold a restricted driving permit (RDP) for five straight years to obtain full driving privileges after the suspension. A defendant with an RDP can only drive for work, school, medical appointments, alcohol/drug treatment, and other limited circumstances. An ignition interlock device (IID) must be installed and used in the defendant’s vehicle for five years, and the defendant must pay $30 each month using the IID.

Contact Chicago DUI Lawyer Toma Makedonski for a free consultation and inquire about our reasonable low flat DUI fees.