DUI Lawyer Oak Forest Illinois | Differences Between Misdemeanor and Felony DUI

When you are charged with a DUI, the consequences can be severe. In Illinois, there are three different levels of DUI charges known as misdemeanor and felony DUI. Whichever charge you are facing, the DUI Lawyer Oak Forest Illinois at The MacNeil Firm is here to help. Call (708) 218-0947 or (708) 218-0947 for a consultation today.

Each level has its own potential penalties and requirements for sentencing. Understanding these differences is critical to mounting an effective defense against your charges so that you can lower the charges or even avoid a conviction. 

Legal definitions of DUI

“Driving Under the Influence” is defined as operating a motor vehicle while impaired by alcohol, other drugs, including cannabis (marijuana) prescribed for medical purposes, or intoxicating compounds and methamphetamine. It’s against the law and can carry serious penalties, including fines, jail time, community service, and driver’s license suspension. If you’re convicted of DUI in Illinois, it will also go on your criminal record.

If you’re facing charges for driving while intoxicated, it’s important to understand what this offense means so that you and your DUI Lawyer Oak Forest Illinois can plan accordingly. There are different legal strategies that need to be employed depending on the severity of the charge. 

The difference between a misdemeanor and a felony  DUI

If you’re charged with a DUI in Illinois, it’s important to understand the difference between a misdemeanor and felony charge. A DUI is considered a misdemeanor if you were driving with a BAC below 0.08% and if you have had no prior convictions within the past 5 years.

A DUI can be classified as a felony if you have been convicted of two or more DUIs within the past 10 years. If you were driving with someone under age 16 in your vehicle when you were arrested for DUI, it is also a felony. In addition, having a BAC of .16% or higher, driving intoxicated as a rideshare driver with a passenger, or while driving a commercial vehicle can also be considered felony DUI. 

Any time you have a DUI and have caused an accident, bodily harm, or death, the charge can be a felony DUI charge. This applies even if it is your first DUI offense. 

Ultimately, the circumstances of your DUI offense will determine whether you will face felony or misdemeanor charges. It is worth noting that there are different levels of felony DUI offenses, with varying degrees of punishment and penalties. Whatever type of DUI charge you are facing, the attorneys at The MacNeil Firm have the experience to provide you with a stellar legal defense. 

Consequences for misdemeanor and felony DUI

Consequences for a misdemeanor DUI are less severe than those for felony DUI. If you are facing misdemeanor charges, it is likely that you will lose driving privileges for a year (5 years at the most) and may have to do community service or jail time. There will also be fines associated with the charge.

For felony DUI, the fines will be greater. You will also lose your license and face jail time. The length of jail time and the length of time you’ll be prevented from driving are far greater for these charges. 

For both misdemeanor and felony DUI, if you are convicted, the charge will be on your record permanently. 

An experienced DUI Lawyer Oak Forest Illinois can have a big impact on the outcome of your case

If you have been charged with a DUI in Illinois, it’s important to hire an experienced DUI Lawyer Oak Forest Illinois who can have a big impact on the outcome of your case. At The MacNeil Firm, we know all of the legal rules that apply to your case or how those rules will affect your chances at trial or sentencing. We know what questions to ask and how to negotiate with prosecutors. And we have helped numerous clients get their charges reduced and even dropped. Contact us today for a free consultation.