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IL defeense lawyerPeople who hold a commercial driver’s license (CDL) are held to higher standards than most other drivers on the road. This is because holding a CDL typically means you are driving a commercial motor vehicle (CMV) quite often, which is typically very large and heavy-duty. CMV’s are plenty safe when they are used in a correct and safe manner, but they can become extremely dangerous if a person drives recklessly or carelessly. Both state governments and the federal government have the power to create and enforce rules about CDL’s, CMV’s and the people who utilize them. In certain situations, your CDL can be put into danger of being revoked or disqualified if you commit certain acts, such as driving while under the influence of drugs or alcohol.

Illinois DUI Penalties

If you are charged with a DUI and you hold a CDL, you not only face penalties pertaining to your CDL but also to your standard Illinois driving privileges. A first-time DUI in Illinois is charged as a Class A misdemeanor, meaning you face up to one year in prison, up to $2,500 in fines and a one-year driver’s license revocation.

The Effect of a DUI on Your CDL

According to Illinois law, your CDL can be disqualified for a minimum of 12 months if you commit a first violation of:

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IL defense lawyerOne of the more serious vehicular crimes you can be charged with in Illinois is reckless homicide. Reckless homicide is similar to involuntary manslaughter in that the perpetrator did not intend to kill another person, except reckless homicide involves the use of a motor vehicle while involuntary manslaughter does not. Often times, car accidents that result in the death of someone are the product of a speeding driver, a driver who is under the influence of alcohol or a distracted driver. Reckless homicide charges are felony charges and can result in thousands of dollars in fines and jail time. This is why it is important to hire legal counsel if you have been accused of reckless homicide in Illinois.

What Is Reckless Homicide?

According to the Illinois Criminal Code of 2012, reckless homicide occurs when a person unintentionally kills another person through the use of a motor vehicle without lawful justification. Reckless homicide involves actions that when committed are likely to cause death or great bodily harm and the perpetrator commits them recklessly. You can also be charged with reckless homicide if you kill someone with a motor vehicle while using an incline in a roadway to cause the vehicle to become airborne.

Penalties for Reckless Homicide

Basic reckless homicide is classified as a Class 3 felony. This means you face two to five years in prison and up to $25,000 in fines. Charges can increase to more serious felonies in certain situations. If reckless homicide is committed where school children cross the street and a crossing guard is performing his or her duty, or in a construction zone, you can be charged with a Class 2 felony, carrying a sentence of three to 14 years in prison. If you kill two or more people from the same incident, prison sentences are doubled to six to 28 years in prison.

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IL defense attorneyIn the United States, commercial trucking is a large part of the economy and is one of the most common ways to transport goods throughout the country. According to the American Trucking Association, there were more than 36 million trucks registered and used for business purposes in the U.S. in 2017, with more than 3.5 million truck drivers employed. With so many large trucks on the road, truck accidents are not uncommon. Because of their large size and prevalence, numerous laws exist to protect others who are on the road. When a commercial driver violates those laws, they face serious consequences that can even threaten their driving privileges, such as the violations below.

Reckless Driving

Commercial motor vehicles (CMV’s) are very large in size and weight. Even when a large truck is not carrying a full load, it still weighs thousands of pounds, which can become very dangerous if a driver is not careful. Reckless driving is something that law enforcement and licensing agencies take very seriously. Common forms of reckless driving among commercial drivers include speeding, texting or using a cell phone while driving and erratic lane changes. Depending on the specific circumstances, a reckless driving violation could threaten your commercial driving privileges.

Hours of Service Violations

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) is the governing body that oversees commercial trucking and commercial licensing in the U.S. The FMCSA has rules that dictate how long a trucker is legally able to drive at a time. These are called hours of service and are taken very seriously. Driving fatigue is a real thing and the chances of an accident occurring increase when the driver is tired and unable to concentrate properly. Violating the hours of service rules can be bad news for a trucker.

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