If your BAC is 0.08% or higher, it is illegal for you to drive in Illinois and the United States. However, if you are driving with a blood alcohol concentration between 0.05% and 0.08%, you may still be cited for a DUI if your behavior suggests you are impaired (this is at the discretion of the officer who cites you). Even with having a blood alcohol concentration below the legal limit, you are still far more likely to get involved in a fatal car accident than if you didn’t consume any alcohol at all.
If an officer pulls you over for a moving violation and then determines that your BAC is 0.08% or more, or if you refuse testing, the officer will suspend your license immediately. You will be provided with a receipt that will allow you to continue driving for 45 days and allow you time to fight the arrest and suspension. After those 45 days are done, your suspension then goes into effect. License Statutory Summary Suspensions for a 1st offense for failing chemical testing is 6 months, and for refusing to submit to chemical testing is 12 months.
In the state of Illinois, a person undergoing a first summary suspension is eligible to apply for a Monitoring Device Driving Permit, which allows them to operate vehicles equipped with an Ignition Interlock Device, which controls your car ignition and measures your Blood Alcohol Concentration anytime you wish to drive. If your BAC is above 0.05, the device will not allow you to start your car and drive.
With your second and third DUI offenses, they come with mandatory prison sentences of between 3 months and 5 years. You’ll lose your driver’s license for at least 5 years and might not be able to apply for a work permit. So you will have to rely on family members, friends or public transportation to travel to work and back.
If you get convicted of DUI when you are underage, you will lose your driving privileges for a minimum of 2 years. When you are a minor and get stopped for a traffic violation, even a trace of alcohol will result in getting your license or permit suspended. Conviction for a DUI becomes part of your permanent record which can unfortunately affect educational possibilities and future employment.