A traffic ticket attorney in Illinois like Andrew Nickel can help you resolve tickets for issues from running a red light to speeding.
Getting a Traffic Ticket in Illinois
No one wants to be stopped for a traffic violation, but it does not have to be a crisis or have a major impact on your life. Traffic violations can mean anything from failure to come to a complete stop at a stop sign to violating the posted speed limit. What all of these offenses have in common is that they can be stress-inducing and carry with them a list of financial penalties and personal inconveniences.
A traffic stop occurs when an officer stops a vehicle that violates the state or local vehicle code. This could be something as simple as running a red light or going over the speed limit.
Illinois Traffic Violation Reporting
Police departments and officers who take part in a traffic stop in this state have been required to submit data about these stops to the Illinois Department of Transportation (IDOT) since 2004. The 2018 Traffic Stop Study data does not include crashes or when an officer stops a vehicle they believe was linked to a crime, such as a vehicle wanted in connection with a robbery or DUI. The analysis of traffic stops in the state is based on the following data:
- Reason for the stop
- Race of the driver
- Duration of the stop
- Outcome of the stop
- If consent to search was requested or conducted
- If a dog sniff was conducted and what the results were
Police departments must submit traffic stop data to IDOT prior to March 1st of the following year. Failure to submit all required information to IDOT can potentially make the findings of the traffic stop null and void in a court of law. A preliminary analysis is then performed, and the results are posted on a secure site at IDOT so that each department may view their results. The police departments have ten days to see if there are any errors in the report or submit comments attached to agency reports.
It is essential to know your rights when you are stopped for a traffic violation or any other reason. Please contact the Law Offices of Andrew Nickel for advice.
IL Traffic Ticket Search
If you want to do an IL ticket search, you will be pleased to know that paying a parking or traffic ticket has become easier now. You can conduct online ticket pay with a Traffic Ticket Lookup.
You can also check unpaid tickets and paid tickets across any state over the Internet. You only need your driver’s license number, your license plate number, or the number on your ticket. Searching by a license plate is easier if you need to check on paying a ticket online for someone else.
Conducting an IL Traffic Ticket Lookup
To conduct an IL ticket lookup online, follow these steps:
- Navigate to the official state website of your choice, and click on the “Police” link. As an example, go to the City of Chicago or Cook County website.
- Scroll down to the “Search by” section and click “License Plate.” You may also click on “License Number” or one of the other options, but as an example, use “License Plate” for now.
- Type the license plate number in the field that says, “Plate Number.” Click the “State” drop-down box and choose the state associated with the license plate.
- Click the drop-down box in the field that says, “Plate Type.” Choose the type of motor vehicle to whom the license plate belongs. Click inside the “Owner last name or company name” field. Type the owner’s name and click “Search by Plate.”
You will be given the option to pay by credit or debit card at the Illinois Traffic Ticket Payment section.
How Can You Handle Your IL Traffic Tickets?
The court handling IL traffic tickets hears more cases than any other court, with hundreds of thousands of cases each year. However, some traffic violations are settled before they ever reach a courtroom when a driver pays the associated fine and simultaneously admits their guilt. Choosing this way usually results in a citation on the driving record, though, so it may not be the best option for you.
Among the most common traffic violations are running a red light, speeding, driving on a suspended license, and failing to provide proof of insurance. Another traffic violation a driver may commit includes:
- Drag racing
- Disobeying the Child Passenger Safety Act
- Eluding police
- Failing to wear a seatbelt
- Leaving the scene of an accident where property damage or death occurred
- Reckless driving
Also, Illinois recently passed a law that prohibits texting or using a phone while driving. You can now be ticketed for this. However, it is your right as a citizen of Illinois to contest any aspect of a traffic violation. Contact the Law Offices of Andrew Nickel if you make the decision to fight the ticket you have received and let justice prevail.
Traffic Tickets in Illinois
If you have received a traffic ticket or were stopped by a police officer as a result, the information you should include when paying tickets online are:
- Location of the violation
- Ordinance or statute you are accused of violating
You will be asked to sign the ticket and agree to appear in court on a set day and time or to comply with the terms of the ticket if you are not required to go to court. Additional penalties may apply if you fail to sign the ticket. Signing the ticket is not an admission of guilt – it simply means you agree to a court appearance or to pay your ticket.
It is at the discretion of the police officer whether to arrest you for a petty traffic offense. Arrests typically occur in more serious cases like DUIs, in which a DUI lawyer may be required. An experienced attorney can fight for the best possible outcome, save your money and your driver’s license.
IL Traffic Ticket Payment
When considering whether to plead guilty and pay the fine, it is important to know that most traffic charges are deemed petty or misdemeanor offenses in Illinois. When a charge is categorized as petty, they are typically punishable by only a fine. These petty offenses include red light violations, stop sign violations, speeding tickets, and lane change violations. Fines range up to $1,000 and are either payable that day or as directed by the court.
Charges and Fines
The following fines may be issued:
- 20 miles per hour (mph) over the speed limit = $120
- 21-30 mph above the speed limit = $140
- More than 30 mph above the speed limit = $160
- Running a red light = $120
- Making an illegal turn = $120
- DUI = $1,500
If you’ve got a ticket, you have to read it carefully. It will say if you have to appear in court or not. If you don’t have to make a court appearance, you usually have several options. If your ticket says you must appear in court, it will also list the date, location, and time of your court appearance.
In most petty traffic offenses, a court may issue an order of supervision if the defendant has a good driving record. Under this order, the driver is required to plead guilty and pay a fine, possibly attend traffic safety school, and is placed under court supervision for a specified period of time. If the driver complies with all the conditions, their case will be dismissed at the conclusion of the supervision period and will not result in a conviction on their driving record. But, you have to be eligible to attend traffic safety school. In case you are not, pleading guilty will lead to a conviction.
You can also plead not guilty and request a court date. If you don’t receive a court date within 21 days, follow up. If you miss your court date, you may end up being convicted.
To fully understand your options and get counsel on whether or not you should plead guilty and fight a traffic ticket, contact the Law Offices of Andrew Nickel. Our attorneys can help guide you on the right path.