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New Illinois marijuana laws do not change DUI laws

In January of 2020, recreational marijuana will be legal for Illinois residents. But while the laws on marijuana change in the state, laws on driving while under the influence of marijuana will stay the same.

In Illinois, you are still breaking the law if you drive under the influence of marijuana. Police will be able to arrest you for a DUI. As recreational marijuana becomes legal, make sure you understand Illinois DUI laws.

Current marijuana DUI laws

Illinois drivers face DUI charges when the tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) concentration of blood is at or above five nanograms per milliliter. Police use a blood test to calculate THC concentration.

Illinois courts can also use the results of standardized field sobriety tests as evidence of impairment. Even if the test for THC concentration is below the legal limit, a judge can charge for a DUI based on the results of a field sobriety test.

Marijuana stays in your system

DUIs for marijuana are problematic because THC can stay in your system for up to 28 days. Police currently have no hard and fast tool to test you for marijuana impairment like a breathalyzer can test for alcohol. So even if you are not under the influence of marijuana, a blood test can say that you have more than the legal limit of THC in your system.

DUI risk is still high

With the new laws allowing recreational marijuana, police will be on the lookout for impaired drivers. While Illinois lawmakers have suggested trying to find new ways to test for marijuana impairment, the field sobriety test and blood test are currently the only tests police use.

Even with the changing laws on marijuana, Illinois police can still arrest you for a DUI. Make sure you understand the DUI risks connected with marijuana.

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