Illinois Traffic Laws 2008

Moving Violations and Enhanced Penalties

HB624/PA95-0355 Driving Under the Influence

Driving under the influence laws also apply to motorists driving under the influence of methamphetamine.

SB533/PA95-0377 Driving While License Revoked Penalties

Increases penalties for driving with a revoked driver’s license if the revocation occurred because of a reckless homicide offense. A first violation is a Class 4 felony and provides for mandatory imprisonment or community service (30 days jail or 300 hours of community service); provides that the revocation is extended a minimum of three (3) years; provides that if a person is granted a restricted driving permit, the person may not drive a vehicle not equipped with an ignition interlock device. Requires the defendant to undergo a drug or alcohol evaluation. Provides that a second violation is a Class 2 felony, for which a mandatory prison sentence shall be imposed. Provides that revocation of the person’s driving privileges extends at least five years from the date of his or her release from prison. Provides that the person is not eligible for a restricted driving permit. Provides that a third violation is a Class 1 felony, for which a mandatory term of imprisonment shall be imposed. Provides that the person’s driver’s license is revoked for life. Provides that a fourth or subsequent violation is a Class 1 felony for which a mandatory prison term shall be imposed, and the defendant is eligible for an extended term of imprisonment.

SB441/PA95-0302 Failure to Stop or Yield to Pedestrians

Creates the new offense of Failure to Stop For or Yield the Right-of-Way to a Pedestrian in a crosswalk in a school zone. Provides that a first violation is a petty offense with a minimum fine of $150, and a second or subsequent violation is a petty offense with a minimum fine of $300.

SB585/PA95-0027 Ignition Interlock Device

Amends the Illinois Vehicle Code. Provides that it is unlawful for any person whose driving privilege is restricted by being prohibited from operating a motor vehicle not equipped with an ignition interlock device to operate a motor vehicle not equipped with that device. Provides that a violation is a Class A misdemeanor. Provides that the person also commits a Class A misdemeanor if he or she solicits another person to blow into the device to start the engine of the vehicle. Provides that when the Secretary of State receives a report of a conviction of any violation indicating that a person prohibited from operating a vehicle not equipped with an ignition interlock device was operating a vehicle not equipped with that device, the Secretary shall not issue a driver’s license to that person for an additional period of one year from the date of the conviction.

SB1005/PA95-0347 Leaving the Scene of an Accident

Increases criminal penalties for individuals who leave the scene of an accident resulting in death or injury without reporting the accident to police.

HB1475/PA95-0105 Passing a Stopped School Bus

Authorizes suspending a vehicle’s registration for three (3) months if the owner claims he or she was not driving when the vehicle illegally passed a stopped school bus, and the owner does not identify the offending driver. If the owner of a vehicle that illegally passed a stopped school bus contends that another person was driving the vehicle at the time of the alleged violation, the State’s Attorney or other designated person (rather than the State’s Attorney or other authorized prosecutor) acting in response to a signed complaint, may require the owner to identify the driver in a written statement or deposition.

HB217 Title Delivery Date

Provides that a vehicle dealer has complied with the provision requiring the dealer to deliver to the Secretary of State, within 20 days after transferring a vehicle to another person, the certificate of title to that vehicle, if the dealer mails the certificate to the Secretary within the 20 days, according to the postmark.

HB 362 False Vehicle Title Information

Provides that, except in cases relating to anti-theft laws and abandoned vehicles, any person who knowingly provides false information to the Secretary of State on an application for vehicle title or registration is guilty of a Class A misdemeanor and shall be fined not less than $500.00. A person who commits the offense for purposes of obtaining or renewing a special license plate designating military decorations, military service, or status as a military veteran is guilty of a Class A misdemeanor and shall be fined not less than $1,000.00, to be deposited into the Illinois Military Family Relief Fund.

HB1138 Vehicle Registration Address

For purposes of registration of a vehicle, a person shall list his or her domicile address (instead of residence address) on the application.

HB1439 Uninsured Vehicle Court Supervision

A person placed on court supervision for driving an uninsured vehicle must maintain proof of financial responsibility, in a manner satisfactory to the Secretary of State, for a period of at least three years after the date the proof is filed.

SB56 Vehicle Obstruction Removal

If a damaged vehicle is obstructing traffic lanes, the driver of the vehicle must make every reasonable effort to move the vehicle or have it moved so as not to block traffic. If any peace officer or highway authority official finds a vehicle blocking traffic in this violation, he or she may move the vehicle or require it moved by the driver or by a third party. A towing service is not liable for any loss or damages to real or personal property that occurs as a result of the removal or towing of the vehicle.

SB80 Bicycle Safety Revisions

The driver of a vehicle overtaking a bicycle or individual proceeding in the same direction on a highway must maintain a distance of at least three (3) feet between the vehicle and the bicycle or individual. A rider of a bicycle or motorized pedacycle shall ride as close to the right hand curb or edge as practicable.

Teens and Graduated Driver’s Licenses

HB518/PA95-0201 Parental Access to Teen Driving Records

Permits parents or guardians to examine their child’s driving record online and at no charge, as long as the child is 18 years of age or younger.

Driver’s License Suspension for Alcohol Consumption, Possession, Purchase or Receipt – A person under age 21 will receive a three-month (3) driver’s license suspension for any sentence of Court Supervision for possession, consumption, purchase or receipt of alcohol. A conviction is no longer required for this suspension.

Street Racing – The Secretary of State will revoke the driving privileges of any person convicted of street racing, and law enforcement may impound the vehicle for up to five (5) days.

Permit Phase: 15-Year-Old Drivers 

The teen must hold the permit for a minimum of nine months, before applying for an Initial License.

The teen must not be sentenced to any convictions for moving violations during the nine-month permit phase.

For teens younger than 19, cell phone use while driving is prohibited except in the case of an emergency to contact a law enforcement agency, health care provider or emergency services agency.

Sanctions

To obtain a sentence of Court Supervision for a traffic offense, drivers younger than 18 must appear in person before the presiding Court with a parent or legal guardian, and must also attend Traffic Safety School.

A conviction for a moving violation results in a nine-month waiting period before applying for a driver’s license.

Initial Licensing Phase: 16-17-Year-Old Drivers 

A nighttime driving restriction is in place from Sunday through Thursday, 10:00 p.m-6:00 a.m., and from Friday through Saturday, 11:00 p.m.-6:00 a.m.

The teen must maintain a conviction-free driving record for six months prior to turning age 18, before moving to the Full Licensing Phase.

A conviction for a traffic violation during the Initial Licensing Phase may extend restrictions beyond age 18.

For the first year of licensing, or until the driver is age 18, whichever occurs first, the number of passengers is limited to one person under age 20, unless the additional passenger(s) is a sibling, step-sibling, child, or step-child of the driver. After this period, the number of passengers is limited to one in the front seat and the number of safety belts in the back seat.

For teens younger than 19, cell phone use while driving is prohibited except in the case of an emergency to contact a law enforcement agency, health care provider or emergency services agency.

Sanctions 

To obtain a sentence of Court Supervision for a traffic offense, drivers younger than 18 must appear in person before the presiding Court with a parent or legal guardian, and must also attend Traffic Safety School.

The Secretary of State will impose an additional driver’s license suspension for each subsequent moving violation following an initial suspension.

Full Licensing Phase: 18-20-Year-Old Drivers 

Cell phone use while driving for persons under age 19 is prohibited except in the case of an emergency to contact a law enforcement agency, health care provider or emergency services agency.

Sanctions 

The Secretary of State will impose an additional driver’s license suspension for each subsequent moving violation following an initial suspension.

Specialty License Plates:

HB2808/PA95-0226 Autism License Plate

Authorizes the Secretary of State to issue “Autism Awareness” specialty license plates

HB167/PA95-0034 Gold Star License Plate

Makes available specially designated “Gold Star” license plates to certain Illinois residents whose loved ones died while serving in the U.S. military.

HB2783/PA95-0162 Korean War License Plate

Expands eligibility guidelines for specialty license plates for Korean War veterans. Recognizes veterans who served after the July 1954 cease-fire.

HB3395/PA95-0320 Scout License Plate

Authorizes the Secretary of State to issue Boy Scout and Girl Scout specialty license plates.

SB73/PA95-0531 Sheet Metal License Plate

Authorizes the Secretary of State to issue Sheet Metal Workers International Association specialty license plates.

Miscellaneous:

HB1900/PA95-0398 Roadside Memorials

Allows relatives of individuals killed in DUI accidents to apply for roadside memorial markers erected by the Illinois Department of Transportation.

New Traffic Laws Effective June 1, 2008

HB508 Vehicle Homicide in School Crossing

If a defendant commits reckless homicide upon a public thoroughfare where children pass going to and from school when a school crossing guard is performing official duties, the defendant is guilty of a Class 2 felony.

HB841 Abandoned Vehicles

The Clerk of the court shall (rather than may) notify the Secretary of State whenever a resident of this state fails to pay any fine, charge, or cost imposed for violating the provision of the Code regarding abandonment of vehicles, or a similar provision of a local ordinance.

HB1080 Minors, Gang Activity, Driving Bans

If a person is adjudicated under the Juvenile Court Act of 1987 on the basis of an offense determined to have been committed in furtherance of gang activity, the court shall provide that the person shall be denied driving privileges. If the person has never held a driver’s license or permit, he or she shall not be issued one until reaching the age of 18.

HB1491 Counties and Maximum Speed Reductions

The county board of a county may determine and declare by ordinance a reduction in the maximum speed limit at any place or along any part or zone of a county highway whenever the county board, in its sole discretion, determines that the reduction in the maximum speed limit is appropriate.

SB363 Reckless Homicide 

Provides that in cases involving reckless homicide in which the defendant unintentionally kills an individual while driving in a posted school zone or in a construction or maintenance zone, the trier of fact may infer that the defendant’s actions were performed recklessly where he or she was also either driving at a speed of more that 20 miles per hour in excess of the posted speed limit or in violation the DUI provision of the Illinois Vehicle code. Limits the inference to situations where children are present in the school zone or where construction or maintenance workers are present in the construction or maintenance zone.

SB577 SOS-HEARINGS

Amends the Illinois Vehicle Code. Regarding the general SOS hearing provision (includes underage alcohol consumption suspension), provides that a petition to contest the imposition of a suspension of a person’s driving privileges because of the person’s refusal to undergo testing for alcohol, drugs, or intoxicating compounds, or because drugs, intoxicating compounds, or alcohol in excess of the legal limit were found in the person’s blood, breath, or urine, must be filed within 90 days after the effective date of the suspension. Provides that if a petition is withdrawn, it must be re-filed in 90 days. Provides that a petition that has been withdrawn more than twice may not be re-filed. Provides that a person whose license has been suspended may subpoena the arresting officer or any other law enforcement officer who participated in the person’s arrest to appear at the hearing to contest the suspension. Provides that the failure of a law enforcement officer to appear at the hearing is grounds for a continuance, if the hearing officer considers the continuance appropriate, but not grounds for rescission of the suspension.

Amends the Illinois Vehicle Code. Provides that an offender’s eligibility for a restricted driving permit depends on whether denial of all driving privileges would cause undue hardship, as defined by the rules adopted by the Secretary of State. Provides that a person convicted of 4 or more offenses of driving under the influence, leaving the scene of an accident involving death or personal injury, reckless homicide, or a combination of those offenses, is not eligible for a restricted driving permit. Provides that the Secretary shall revoke the driving privileges of any person under the age of 21 convicted of an out-of-state offense similar to DUI. Provides that a second suspension of a person’s driving privileges for an out-of-state offense similar to DUI, or a single suspension of that type, if coupled with a summary suspension under the Code or a DUI or reckless homicide conviction, shall result in the person’s being prohibited from driving a vehicle that is not equipped with an ignition interlock device. Provides that a conviction of reckless homicide (as well as a conviction of DUI) increases the limitations that shall be imposed on a person’s driving privileges.

SB607 Provisions for Vehicle Seizure

Transfers from the Criminal Code to the Vehicle Code provisions for seizure and forfeiture of the vehicles of certain persons driving without a valid driver’s license or permit, or without liability insurance, or who have committed specified violations while driving under the influence of alcohol, drugs, or intoxicating compounds.

SB607 DUI CONSOLIDATION 

Effective 6-1-08 and 1-1-09 in part

Amends the Illinois Vehicle Code. Combines prior changes made by several Public Acts regarding driving under the influence with various changes concerning organization of the provisions, elements of the offenses, penalties, and other matters. Makes corresponding changes in the Unified Code of Corrections.

Adds a new additional administrative sanctions section to the DUI statute. Mandated are a sentencing evaluation [required now]; a discretionary requirement to attend a victim impact panel; liability for the expense for an emergency response to a DUI auto (as below); Secretary of State revocation of license for a conviction (done now); a special $500-1,000 fine (done now); treatment monitoring by the court; and liability fo the expense for an emergency response to a DUI auto, DUI snowmobile or DUI boat ($1,000 cap-done now). Defines “emergency response” as “any incident requiring a response by a police officer, a firefighter carried on the roles of a regularly constituted fire department, or an ambulance.”

Amends the Code of Corrections to delete redundant language regarding no six-month jail sentence limit for a 4TH or subsequent DUI conviction. Also limits credit for time spent in home detention prior to judgment for certain DUI offenses.

Effective June 1, 2008.

[Trailer Amendment to SB300]:

Amends the Illinois Vehicle Code if and only if Senate Bill 300 of the 95TH General Assembly becomes law and the changes to Section 6-206.1 of the Illinois Vehicle Code in that bill become law in the form in which they appear in House Amendment No. 1 to that bill. Changes a reference from “JDP” to “MDDP”. Provides that a court shall not enter the order directing the Secretary of State to issue a monitoring device driving permit if the court finds: the offender’s driver’s license is otherwise invalid (rather than valid); death or great bodily harm (rather than no death or great bodily harm) resulted from the arrest for DUI; that the offender has (rather than has not) been previously convicted of reckless homicide; or that the offender is (rather than is not) less than 18 years of age. The provisions added by this amendment are effective January 1, 2009.

SB1264 NO LICENSE PLATE COVERS

Amends the Illinois Vehicle Code. Prohibits clear (as well as tinted) plastic license plate covers.

By the way, effective August 23, 2007…

SB665 School Bus Electronic Recording

Exempts from an eavesdropping violation, an electronic recording made of the interior of a school bus while the school bus is being used to transport the students. Students and parents/guardians will be notified of the devices through their student handbooks.

Disclaimer: This list is not intended to be all-inclusive. This page contains general information that is intended, but not guaranteed, to be correct, complete and up-to-date.  It is not intended to be a source of legal advice. You should not rely on the information on this page and should always seek the advice of a competent lawyer.