We all make mistakes, and our mistakes often come with unwanted consequences. What’s important is how we learn and recover. We don’t want to make the same mistakes again, and we want to get ourselves back on our feet as fast as possible, especially if our mistakes lead to the suspension of our driver’s licenses and make the commute that much harder.
In Illinois, there are two ways you can lose your right to drive: you can have your license either suspended or revoked. If your license is suspended, you’ll need to wait a specified amount of time to get it back. If your license is revoked, you’ll need to take extra steps to get it back. Both penalties leave you looking for new ways to get to work.
Illinois restricted driving permit
Depending on your situation, you may be able to apply for a restricted driving permit, which can be complicated. Even if your application is successful, the permit won’t restore all your driving privileges. The permit is meant to help you work and meet your medical needs—as well as those of your family members—and you’ll likely find yourself limited to driving at specific times of the day and within set areas.
Monitoring device driving permit
In Illinois, you can face the statutory summary suspension of your license anytime you are arrested for a possible DUI, even if you are not convicted.
In the case of a summary suspension, you will not be eligible for a restricted driving permit, but you might be able to drive with a monitoring device driving permit. You’ll need to install a breath alcohol ignition interlock device in your car, and you’ll be required to breathe into the device every time you want to start your car.
Driver’s license reinstatement
You can have your driver’s license reinstated after having it revoked, but the reinstatement process isn't automatic. You must complete all court-ordered treatment programs and arrange a hearing where the court will decide the public risk of reinstating your license. Given the stakes, it is common for people to consult with attorneys prior to their hearings.
Don’t let your one mistake define you
While it’s always best to avoid costly mistakes, it’s also true that no one’s perfect. We have all stumbled from time to time. We have all taken chances, made poor decisions or found ourselves in the wrong place at the wrong time. Don’t let the negative consequences define you. Learn from your mistake. Get back on your feet. And get back out into the world.