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Naperville Criminal Defense Law Blog

How is Illinois dealing with the opioid crisis?

Illinois, unfortunately, has become one of the most well-known states in the country in terms of the national opioid epidemic. News stories of overdose deaths due to opioids such as heroin frequently come out of the state, and the problem is alarmingly severe.

The extreme level of crisis in Illinois has led to several initiatives aimed at curbing the crisis and getting adequate help and treatment for people who have an addiction to an opioid. People who have an addiction to this type of drug come from all walks of life, and there is not one typical profile to describe who may likely succumb. Luckily, the state recognizes this and actively works to put programs into place that bring much-needed help.

How much does an Illinois DUI affect auto insurance rates?

An Illinois driving under the influence conviction typically brings with it considerable penalties. If you face such a charge, you may have legitimate concerns about how your life could potentially change in the wake of a conviction. Hefty fines, possible jail time and ignition interlock device obligations are only the beginning of the penalties you may face from the justice system. Together, they can make it especially difficult for you to hold down a job, stay current on your responsibilities and otherwise go about your daily life.

While the criminal repercussions related to a DUI conviction are plentiful, you may also face other hindrances that come from somewhere other than the Illinois criminal justice system. For example, you can anticipate your automotive insurance rates will skyrocket following a DUI conviction, and you may struggle to pay these new rates when you also have to pay fines, ignition interlock device-related fees and so on. So, how much of an auto insurance increase might you expect after an Illinois DUI?

Can a drug conviction impact financial aid eligibility?

When you send your son or daughter off to college, you want to feel confident that he or she will behave responsibly and avoid doing anything that could potentially land him or her in trouble. Regrettably, however, college is a time of experimentation for many young people, and when that experimentation involves drugs, the repercussions can prove considerable.

While your child could face fines, jail time and other possible penalties if authorities catch him or her using, possessing or selling drugs, your child may also lose his or her ability to receive financial aid in the wake of a drug conviction. Virtually all types of drug crimes can potentially lead to a loss of financial aid, although the amount of time your child will lose access to aid if convicted on a drug-related charge will depend on certain factors.

Recreational drug use can lead to drug charges

Many people in Napierville are serving prison time for convictions stemming from drug charges who are not drug addicts. Some of those individuals are college students who did not think anything was wrong with them using their roommate’s prescriptions/medications or sharing recreational drugs while hanging out. 

With the nation up in arms over opioid abuse and overdoses, law enforcement is cracking down on drug misuse and abuse everywhere. If you do not want to end up with a drug conviction on your record, consider the following information. 

Retail theft in Illinois

Retail theft, also commonly known as shoplifting, is a crime that can result in substantial criminal penalties as well as a potential civil lawsuit. Persons who face shoplifting charges in Illinois should take their case very seriously.

Generally, penalties can vary depending on the specific type of offense, the value of the merchandise in question and the offender's existing criminal record. In a civil suit, a damages award can cover the value of the merchandise and the expenses of the plaintiff in pursuing the lawsuit. A merchant may be able to prevail in a civil suit even if the criminal case does not result in a conviction due to the difference in standards of proof in criminal and civil cases.

Illinois is taking speeding more seriously

Perhaps one of the most received traffic tickets among all drivers is the speeding ticket. Whether due to distraction, time constraints or carelessness, speeding is a common violation on all types of roads for all types of people. It is more socially acceptable to engage in than other illegal behaviors, as well.

However, this perspective does not take away the fact that speeding is very dangerous, and not only in bad weather or construction zones. In fact, about a third of traffic-related deaths come from speeding, reports the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. Going over the speed limit makes it harder to control and stop a vehicle. It also reduces the benefits of safety gear and causes more severe physical and property damage in an accident. For these reasons, Illinois has been increasing the penalties of speeding.

4 reasons why teens use drugs

When you get the call that your teenager is in trouble with the law, you feel anger, confusion and frustration. You may wonder why your son or daughter is experimenting with drugs. It is common to feel like you are a failure or that your teen is a bad kid. 

The truth may not be either of those things, though. Teens are not just trying drugs because they are rebellious or you are a bad parent; there are some real reasons that adolescents get into trouble with drugs. Here are a few of the most common ones:

How Illinois police officers identify impaired drivers

When you drive in Illinois, you might benefit from understanding why police officers decide to stop certain cars and what makes them look for further signs of impairment.

Excluding stops at properly organized sobriety checkpoints, law enforcement officers must have probable cause for DUI stops and arrests. When an officer cannot point to specific, legitimate reasons he or she believed a driver was impaired, the prosecution's case can suffer.

Penalties for Illinois' repeat DUI offenders

If you consume alcohol before getting behind the wheel and an Illinois law enforcement official stops you and believes you have consumed more than the law allows, he or she will likely charge you with drunk driving. Ultimately, the penalties you can expect to face will vary based on several factors, among them the details of your offense and whether you have any similar convictions on your record.

Even first-time driving under the influence offenders face harsh penalties, and they might include a revocation of driving privileges, a suspension of vehicle registration and steep fines, among others. Additionally, penalties become increasingly severe if your blood alcohol content surpasses 0.16 percent, or if you have a child under the age of 16 in your vehicle when authorities stop and arrest you. However, as you might expect, the penalties tend to increase in severity if your drunk driving conviction is your second or third offense.

Clearing your criminal record in Illinois

If you live in Illinois and are arrested or charged with a criminal offense, a criminal record automatically gets created in your name, even if you never actually receive a criminal conviction. Your criminal record then becomes available to the public, meaning anyone from prospective employers to prospective life partners can get their hands on it with relative ease – unless you do something about it.

If you wish to erase or conceal your Illinois criminal record, the first step involves filing a request with the court. You can attempt to utilize one of three different methods when you want to clear your criminal record. You can work to have it expunged or sealed, but if you are unable to do either, you may be able to pursue executive clemency.

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