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What Happens When Someone Is Charged With A DUI In Illinois?

How Does It Feel When Someone Is Charged With A DUI And They Have The Critical 10 To 15 Days, After The Arrest, To Request The DMV Hearing?

In Wisconsin, you have to make a request within 10 days, whereas in Illinois, there is no hearing that’s set specifically: you have to request a hearing if you are trying to get a summary suspension thrown out or rescinded. However, the actual suspension doesn’t kick in for 46 days. You have to go into court as part of your DUI case and request a hearing that’s going to contest that. The problem is, let’s say you get arrested on November 1st, and you have 46 days before that summary suspension kicks in. Well, you don’t know what day the officer put down on the ticket as your next court date. If you get arrested on November 1st and the guy puts down your next court date as December 20th, you have a problem right there because before you can even go and request the summary suspension hearing to get it thrown out, it’s past the 46-day timeframe and already in effect.

Someone with an attorney has an advantage because the attorney knows what he’s doing, whereas a public defender can’t handle a statutory summary suspension because it’s a civil, not a criminal, matter. As soon as I get a DUI case, I file a notice to request a hearing on the petition to rescind the summary suspension. Once that is done and I’ve given proper notice to the prosecutor, they have 30 days to actually have the hearing. If they don’t have the hearing within 30 days of filing, then I will file a Trainer motion, and the judge should then dismiss the summary suspension.

This is a smart defense attorney move. For example, if Officer Jones knows that you got arrested on November 1st, he will set your court hearing for December 10th, which is still within the 46-day period. It’s always set for, actually, the attorney to appear, which is a per se hearing; it’s not set for hearing that day but is just your first appearance date in court. If you haven’t gone and filed that petition to rescind early and you come into court on December 2nd, they still have 30 days to have their hearing.

If your hearing date is set for January 1st, on that date you’re already going to be suspended because from November 1st to December 16th marks 46 days, so by December 16th, you’re screwed. You can’t wait for January 1st to have a hearing, but this happens all the time where if you don’t go in ahead of time and set it then, you’re going to get screwed.

One of the other reasons to file early is, let’s say Officer Jones is thinking, “Okay, I have to be available right around January 1st; that’s when the hearing is going to be. I have my training and my family vacation from December 10th to December 25th, so I should be good.” Well, he thinks that’s how it’s set because he gave you the December 10th or 12th date to file your motion. If the attorney goes in and files it ahead of time and this thing is set for December 15th, the day the officer is leaving, he might say “Screw it. This is one more case. There’s a family vacation I’ve planned all year. I can’t change my stuff, so I’m not going.” Well, guess what? The officer doesn’t show up for the hearing, which makes it much easier for you to win on the summary suspension.

However, keep in mind that it’s not a guarantee if he doesn’t show up because this is a civil case, and in a civil case, they made a special exception in the Legislature that an officer does not need to be present for the hearing; the officer’s sworn reports can be used in court. But there are always technical ways to attack those sworn reports. And it comes down to the client saying, “Look, I never said this,” and the officer’s sworn report saying, “Yes, he did.” Hopefully, the judge will give some deference to the person, standing in front of him, in terms of demeanor, compared to someone who didn’t even bother showing up.

Most of the time, if the officer does not show up and you have someone that presents live evidence because you have to go forward on these summary suspension hearings, the burden is on the attorney to show there’s no basis for the suspension. It’s not like they have to prove the case beyond a reasonable doubt on DUI cases; it’s totally different because having your license is a privilege: it’s not a right, and there’s no jail time involved. So on a DUI, they have to prove their case beyond a reasonable doubt. On a summary suspension, the attorney has the burden of showing there is no reason to give you the suspension.

Therefore, you want to try and get that hearing set in a time, if you can, when the officer is not going to be there. You also want to do it as soon as possible because if you set it too late, your suspension is going to be in effect. Your insurance company might have already found out that you’ve got a suspension, which will raise your rates. All kinds of ugly things start happening when that suspension is in effect, which you want to avoid.

If you are not sure What Happens When Someone Is Charged With A DUI In Illinois, call Barry Boches & Associates Attorney At Law for a FREE Initial Consultation at (847) 244-4636 and get the information and legal answers you’re seeking.

Barry Boches, Esq.

Get your questions answered - call me for your free phone consultation (847) 244-4636.

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