As the holidays near, you’re likely going to have friends and family inviting you to gatherings. Some of these parties may include alcohol and that means it’s important to remember the consequences for drunk driving.

Illinois takes drunk driving very seriously. State law classifies a first-time DUI as a Class A misdemeanor. Aside from legal consequences, you could have your insurance rates increase or even lose your job.

How will you get to work?

A big reason people lose their jobs after a DUI is because they’ve lost their license. Not having a license means you lack the legal ability to get to work. First-time offenders lose their license for one year, which is a long time to go without your license.

You may still be able to get to work if you obtain an ignition interlock device that requires you to take a breathalyzer test to start your vehicle.

A restricted driving permit also exists for drivers who have a hardship and provide proof of completing a drug and alcohol treatment program.

 

You may also face up to one year in prison and a $2,500 fine. If your blood alcohol content is twice the legal limit of .08, the consequences also increase, including 100 hours of community service at minimum.

Think before you drink

You can avoid facing drunk driving charges this holiday season by planning for a sober ride. Ask a friend or family member for a ride, download a ride sharing app, or bring a sleeping bag to sleep on the floor. For the safety of yourself and others, the last thing you should do is get behind the wheel after having too much to drink.