drunk driving

BAC Limits in Illinois: Legal Blood Alcohol Concentration for DUI

Many people assume that it is illegal to consume any amount of alcohol and then get behind the wheel of a vehicle. Thankfully, this is not the case. State law in Illinois sets a strict limit on a person’s blood/alcohol level that makes it illegal to drive on public roads. 

While the state’s core DUI statute applies to all people, there is also a lesser limit for people under the age of 21. Understanding these limits and how alcohol affects a person’s body can help people remain on the right side of the law and avoid life-altering DUI arrests. The legal team at Liberty Law, P.C. wants to help you protect yourself and avoid any trouble with the law.

The Core DUI Statute in Illinois and BAC Limits

All drivers in Illinois must follow the prohibition on drunk driving. The core statute that prohibits this activity is contained in 625 ILCS 5/11-501. According to this statute, it is against the law to drive while under the influence of alcohol. More specifically, the statute says that a person who has a blood/alcohol content level of .08 percent or more is in violation of this law.

Police officers have three means to attempt to gather evidence concerning this supposed intoxication. They may demand that a driver submit to a blood, breath, or urine test if there is probable cause that a person has consumed alcohol and then driven a vehicle. If the result of these tests indicates that a driver was over the legal limit, an arrest is certain, and a prosecutor will have a powerful case at trial.

How much alcohol will place a person over this legal limit? It depends on the type of alcohol and a person’s metabolism. In simple terms, people looking to remain under the legal limit should consume no more than one drink per hour. However, these are not fixed rules. To be completely safe, never drink before driving.

What DUI Laws Impact People Under the Age of 21?

While the state’s core DUI law impacts every person, there are special laws that apply to those under the age of 21. People under the age of 21 can never legally possess or consume alcohol in Illinois. It follows that these people cannot consume any amount of alcohol and then drive a vehicle.

According to 625 ILCS 5/11-501.8, having any amount of alcohol in one’s system is a violation of the state’s Zero Tolerance Law. Violations here result in an automatic three-month suspension of that person’s driver’s license. In addition, police officers and prosecutors may still make arrests under the Illinois’ core DUI law. If a conviction occurs here, the judge must suspend that person’s driver’s license for at least two years.

Knowing Illinois’ BAC Limits and DUI Law can Help You Stay Out of Trouble

The law in Illinois places strict limits on how much alcohol a person can consume and then legally drive. For those under the age of 21, this limit is zero. For everyone else, the legal limit is .08 percent. All drivers give their implied consent to submit to blood, breath, or urine tests if there is probable cause that they have violated these laws.

Understanding these limits can help people safely consume alcohol and protect their legal rights. The team at Liberty Law, P.C. wants to prevent DUI arrests before they happen. Reach out to them today with any questions about the BAC limits in Illinois and what to do if you have been arrested under suspicion of drunk driving.