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Will My DUI Charge Be a Felony in Illinois?

 Posted on April 05, 2022 in DUI

Joliet DUI defense lawyerDrinking and driving is a major cause of fatal car accidents, even when only one car is involved. The state of Illinois, therefore, takes people driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol very seriously, and certain DUI charges may even be prosecuted as a felony DUI. Criminal DUI charges can impact your employment prospects, driving privileges, and relationships for long into the future; if you have recently been charged with a DUI in Will County, Illinois, you may be wondering what the likely consequences are. 

First and Second DUI Charges

If there are no other additional charges, such as property theft or vehicular homicide, a person’s first and second DUI charge will usually be a Class A misdemeanor. While a misdemeanor may sound less serious than a felony, Class A misdemeanors are the most serious type of misdemeanor charge and carry serious consequences, including up to a year in jail and up to $2,500 in fines. A judge can also order probation, court supervision, a breath alcohol ignition interlock device, and counseling for DUI charges. 

Felony DUI Charges

After two convictions for driving under the influence, subsequent DUIs can be charged as felonies. However, other behaviors can make even a first or second DUI a felony charge, including: 

  • Driving with a suspended license
  • Driving without insurance 
  • Driving a school bus under the influence 
  • Fleeing the scene of a car crash
  • Having an extremely high blood alcohol content
  • Getting a DUI with a passenger under age 16 and injuring that passenger
  • Causing someone else “great bodily harm,” or injuries more serious than bruises or cuts, such as a permanent disability
  • Killing someone while driving drunk

Felony DUI charges can carry very serious consequences. Depending on the circumstances, charges can range from a Class 1 felony to a Class X felony. Convictions carry consequences of up to $25,000 in fines and up to 30 years in prison. 

Call an Aggressive Joliet DUI Defense Lawyer

If you have been charged with an aggravated or felony DUI, get help right away from an experienced and assertive Joliet, IL DUI defense attorney with McNamara Phelan McSteen, LLC. We will work with you to build a firm defense and do whatever we can to get your charges reduced or dropped. Call us now at 815-727-0100 to schedule a free, confidential consultation. If someone you love is already being held in jail for a DUI, you can call us on their behalf. 




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