Receiving a traffic ticket is something that can happen to all Illinois drivers at some stage in their lives. Upon receiving traffic tickets, most people pay the court fine without questioning it. However, paying for a traffic ticket implies guilt for the traffic offense that you have been accused of, and you give up your right to contest the violation.
Paying fines for multiple moving violations can have a serious effect on your driving record down the line, and could lead to suspension or revocation of your driver’s license. As an Illinois driver, you have a legal right to fight against alleged traffic offenses in court, such as speeding, to help prevent losing your driving privileges.
At Hirsch Law, we have a team of highly experienced speeding ticket lawyers who can help protect your rights. The consequences of a speeding ticket could include fines, penalty points on our driver’s license, the requirement to attend traffic safety school, and even a misdemeanor criminal charge for aggravated speeding.
Our lawyers know that the consequences of moving violations can be severe, which is why we will do everything in our power to protect your future. This includes fighting to get your license reinstated and defending against charges on your behalf. The managing attorney of our firm, Gordon H. Hirsch, has won multiple awards and recognitions for his dedication to clients, including Enterprise.com Top Criminal Defense Attorneys in Chicago 2022, and America’s Top 100 Attorneys.
Experience matters when your future is on the line, so you should contact Hirsch Law Group at 815-880-1134 to schedule a free consultation.
Moving Violations in Illinois
Illinois traffic violations are divided into two categories; moving violations and non-moving traffic violations. Moving violations are offenses that happen when the motor vehicle is moving. Common examples of moving violations include:
- Running a red light
- Failing to yield
- Overtaking a school bus
- Disobeying traffic signs
- Texting while driving
- Driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs (DUI)
Illinois traffic laws consider moving violations to be more serious offenses than non-moving violations. Because of this, the penalties for a moving violation are more severe than a non-moving violation, and an individual will receive penalty points for a moving violation. This means that moving violations will affect your driving record, and being convicted of too many moving violations within a one-year period will lead to license suspension.
Is a Speeding Ticket a Moving Violation in Illinois?
Driving faster than the posted speed limit is illegal under Illinois traffic law. Because the traffic violation happens when the vehicle is in motion, speeding is considered a moving violation. This means that the penalties for speeding can be quite serious, and the driver will receive points on their driving record for a speeding ticket.
Penalties for a speeding ticket include:
- Driving 1-20 miles over the limit – $120 fine
- Driving 21-25 miles over the limit – $140 fine
- Driving 26-34 miles over the limit (Class B Misdemeanor) – Up to six months in jail, fines of up to $1,500, and community service
- Driving 35 miles or more over the limit (Class A Misdemeanor) – Up to one year in jail, fines of up to $2,500, and community service
The penalties for speeding tickets increase if there are certain aggravating factors, such as driving in a school zone, passing emergency vehicles, or speeding in a construction or maintenance zone. Speeding in a school zone leads to a $150 fine for a first offense and $300 for subsequent offenses. With speeding in a construction or maintenance zone, the fine for a first offense is $250, and this increases to $750 for subsequent offenses.
Are All Speeding Tickets Moving Violations?
Most speeding tickets in Illinois that do not result in criminal penalties are moving traffic violations, dealt with in a traffic court. However, there are some circumstances that can lead to a speeding ticket being charged in a criminal court rather than a traffic court.
Speeding 26 miles or more above the posted speed limit will lead to criminal charges for speeding. The faster you were driving at the time of the offense, the more severe the charges you will receive. Speeding 35 miles over the legal limit will lead to a Class A misdemeanor charge, which will land you a permanent criminal record.
The consequences of a permanent criminal record include background searches, difficulty finding employment, and a loss of certain constitutional rights.
Reckless driving and speeding tickets are two separate traffic violations in Illinois. Sometimes, people think that an aggravated speeding charge is the same as a reckless driving charge, however, this is not the case. A reckless driving charge is brought under criminal law and involves the “willful or wanton” disregard for the lives of other drivers and property through erratic or negligent driving.
In some cases, a prosecutor may increase an aggravated speeding charge to a reckless driving charge. However, the prosecutor must have sufficient evidence to prove that you are guilty of reckless driving. Aggravated speeding alone is not enough to warrant a reckless driving charge, and it is important that you challenge any serious criminal charges brought against you.
Consequences of a Traffic Ticket in Illinois
As most traffic tickets, including speeding tickets, are petty offenses, the consequences usually include traffic ticket fines and penalty points. Depending on the type of fine you receive, you may have to make a court appearance or pay the fine by going to an office. However, you reserve the right to request a court appearance regardless of whether a court appearance is required.
When an individual has a clean driving record, the courts in Illinois may sometimes issue an order of court supervision. An order of supervision is the lowest charge that courts can issue. Under a supervision order, an individual can comply with court requirements for a certain period and get their charges dropped. Speeding tickets usually involve paying a fine, paying court costs, and attending traffic school.
However, if you do not appear in court, you will have to plead not guilty to your speeding violation to receive an order of supervision. If you have been charged with aggravated speeding, you may have to appear in court and carry out community service instead of traffic school. It is important that you hire an experienced attorney to submit a mitigation packet on your behalf and negotiate with the court to get an order of supervision.
Speeding Tickets For Commercial Driver’s License Holders
Commercial driver’s license (CDL) holders are subject to more stringent traffic laws than regular drivers. Commercial drivers face license suspension for committing two or more serious moving offenses within a three-year period, including speeding.
If a commercial driver is charged with speeding 15 mph over the legal limit twice within three years, their license will be suspended for 60 days. Subsequent convictions for a traffic violation will lead to suspension of their license for 120 days.
The law does not require that a commercial driver be convicted of two speeding offenses to face automatic suspension. If you were previously convicted of another serious traffic violation, such as distracted driving or improper lane usage, a speeding ticket could lead to an automatic suspension for 60 days.
The consequences of speeding tickets for commercial drivers are severe. On top of being unable to drive and facing higher insurance rates, you cannot continue to work without your license. This may lead to lost income and difficulty finding additional work. A traffic lawyer from Hirsch Law Group can defend against CDL speeding violations in court on your behalf and fight to get your license reinstated.
What Happens To My Driver’s License After a Traffic Violation?
Because speeding is a moving violation, a person’s driver’s license is at risk of being suspended or revoked for multiple violations. The traffic law in Illinois is based on a penalty points system and three or more moving violations in a year will cause a suspended license. The time you may have your license suspended will depend on the number of driver’s license points that you have.
The penalty points for speeding in Illinois are:
- 5 points for 1-10 mph over the limit
- 15 points for 11-14 mph over the limit
- 20 points for 15-25 mph over the limit
- 50 points for more than 25 mph over the limit
These points will stay on your driving record for up to 5 years and will determine how long your license suspension will last. If you receive three speeding tickets for driving between 1-10 mph over the limit, you could receive a 2-month suspension. However, if you receive three tickets for driving 25 mph over the limit, your license could be revoked indefinitely.
Certain traffic offenses in Illinois can also lead to automatic license suspension or revocation. If you do not pay for a speeding ticket or cannot appear in court, your license could be automatically suspended. The court system does not care about whether you need your license to work, drive children to school, or carry out daily tasks. All that they care about is enforcing laws and ensuring that you pay your fines.
How a Traffic Attorney Can Help You
The only way to protect your best interests after receiving a speeding ticket is to hire an experienced traffic attorney. Courts in Illinois deal with hundreds of speeding tickets and traffic violation cases each week. Their experience with these cases is that most accused people simply pay the fine and plead guilty. They are not so used to people challenging their speeding tickets or putting up a fight.
When you have a talented lawyer by your side, however, they will ensure that your side of the story is heard. The consequences of paying your speeding ticket without contesting it can be severe. Moving violations affect your driving record and if you receive three or more within a year, your license could be suspended for a long time.
A traffic attorney can help your case by investigating whether your rights were respected, assessing technicalities and flaws of the case, negotiating with the prosecutor to get a reduced sentence or to get the charges dropped, building a mitigation packet on your behalf to prove you have a previously clean record, and fighting in court on your behalf. If your license has been suspended, an experienced lawyer will fight tirelessly to get it reinstated and prevent any future harm.
At Hirsch Law Group, we want to protect your future and your best interests throughout all stages of your case. This means ensuring that your driver’s license does not get suspended or revoked for a petty offense.
Contact an Experienced Traffic Lawyer at Hirsch Law Group!
Speeding tickets in Illinois can cause you to lose your driving privileges and potentially face criminal charges. Illinois law is tough on moving violations, because of the higher risk of harm to members of the public. However, because people mostly pay a speeding ticket without questioning it, a police officer may fine you and give you penalty points without sufficient evidence to prove that you were speeding.
As a citizen of Illinois, you have a right to question and contest any traffic violations that you have received. Exercising this right may lead to the violation being dropped, charges being reduced, and no penalty points. However, if you do not exercise this right, you will automatically receive penalty points, a fine, and risk losing your driver’s license.
Hirsch Law Group specializes in helping clients throughout Illinois fight against traffic offenses and criminal charges. With our experience as former prosecutors, our Illinois traffic lawyers understand how the criminal justice system is built in favor of prosecutors, traffic wardens, and police officers. Our job is to protect the rights of our clients and ensure that their future is not harmed by petty traffic offenses.
Once you contact our law firm, a speeding ticket lawyer will discuss your pending speeding ticket, assess whether there is sufficient evidence against you, schedule a court date to contest the ticket, and fight to prevent serious consequences. If your license has been suspended for speeding, we will petition to get it reinstated. We understand that receiving an Illinois traffic ticket is a stressful experience, and we want to help you in any way that we can.
Call our law firm today at 815-880-1134 to schedule a free consultation with an experienced Illinois traffic violations lawyer.