If you drive a lot, odds are you have been stopped for a traffic violation at least once. Illinois law enforcement agencies made 2.3 million traffic stops in 2017, affecting more than one-fourth of the state’s population of 8.5 million licensed drivers (although certainly some stops would have involved non-residents).
About two-thirds of all Illinois traffic stops were for moving violations, with the remainder related to mechanical or vehicle registration issues. Luckily for the drivers, only about 40 percent of all traffic stops resulted in a ticket.
However, if you are one of those 40 percent who get a ticket, the penalties may be much higher than you anticipated. Most people think of speeding, for example, as a very minor offense, with a $140 fine at most. But many drivers are still not aware of a change in Illinois law that took effect in January 2014 which significantly increased the penalties for some speeding tickets.
Illinois Speeding Tickets, Up to 25 MPH Over the Limit
If you are ticketed for going less than 25 mph above the speed limit, this is a petty offense, punishable only by a fine. If your record is otherwise clean, you can generally get court supervision, meaning the ticket will not go on your record as long as you do not commit another violation during the supervision period. If, on the other hand, you have several violations already on your record and are at risk of having your driver’s license suspended, you may want to consult a lawyer regarding your options.
Illinois Speeding Tickets, More Than 25 MPH Over the Limit
If you are ticketed for going 26 mph or more over the speed limit, this is known as aggravated speeding; it is also termed excessive speeding or misdemeanor speeding. You are required to appear before a judge to be sentenced.
Court supervision is possible for these offenses if you have no prior speeding tickets (thanks to a change in Illinois law that took effect in January 2016), but the penalties are still much higher than for lesser speeding offenses.
If you are caught going 26-34 mph over the speed limit, this is classified as a Class B misdemeanor. The maximum penalty is 180 days in county jail and a $1,500 fine.
If you were going 35 mph or more over the speed limit, you committed a Class A misdemeanor (625 ILCS 5/11-601.5). The penalty for that is up to a year in jail and a fine of up to $2,500.
Work Zone Speeding Tickets
If you are ticketed for speeding in a highway construction or work zone, you will have to appear in court. The minimum fine is $375 for the first offense. A second offense carries a minimum fine of $1,000. If you get two work-zone tickets within two years, your driver’s license can be suspended for 90 days.
Get Advice From a Seasoned Will County Traffic Attorney
A speeding ticket can cost you a lot more than just a fine. Your car insurance rates could go up, your driver’s license could be suspended, and you could even lose your job if you are a commercial driver with a CDL. An experienced Joliet speeding ticket defense lawyer may be able to get your ticket dismissed or reduced. Call the Law Offices of Jack L. Zaremba at 815-740-4025 for a no-cost, no-obligation review of your case.