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Kathryn L. Harry & Associates, P.C.
630-472-9700Available 24/7

Illinois’s New “Sign and Drive” Law:” What it Means for Your License

Posted on in Chicago criminal defense lawyer

sign and drive lawAccording to a recent press release from the Governor’s office, Illinois Governor Pat Quinn enacted new legislation to end the practice of requiring Illinois drivers from having to post their driver’s licenses as security for certain traffic offenses under the Illinois Vehicle Code. Formerly, Illinois drivers given a citation for certain offenses had to relinquish their driver’s licenses to police until their fine was paid or until they attended a required court appearance.  When the new legislation, called the “Sign and Drive” law, becomes effective, motorists will only need to give their signatures as a promise that they will comply with terms of the citation and will pay their fines or appear in traffic court as required.

Drivers Can Now Keep Their Licenses

These charged drivers will be permitted to hold onto their driver’s licenses and use them for identification as needed. As before, drivers who do not comply with the terms of citations may still have their licenses suspended. Illinois’s “Sign and Drive” law was first proposed by State Senator Michael Noland (D-Elgin), and State Representative John D’Amico (D-Chicago).

This legislation is motivated by the common sense recognition that temporarily taking driver’s licenses away from residents can pose unforeseen and unnecessary hardship for these residents. As recognized by the “Sign and Drive” law’s co-sponsor Senator Noland, driver’s licenses are a necessary means of identification to provide access to banking, social services, travel, educational, and other necessary services. Inhibiting access to these necessary services could be an unfairly harsh penalty for residents charged with comparatively minor offenses, like some moving violations. This legislation may affect Illinois drivers charged with traffic offenses, such as driving without vehicle insurance, driving over the speed limit, or failing to yield to a stop sign.

According to sponsors of the bill, allowing residents to retain their licenses would cut back on time away from work, family, and other obligations for the charged residents. The legislation was also designed to make it less costly to process the ever increasing number of traffic court cases. Illinois “Sign and Drive” law goes into effect January 1, 2015.

We Are Here to Help You

As the “Sign and Drive” law illustrates, seemingly innocuous traffic violations can cause significant or unforeseen effects on a driver’s daily life. At Kathryn L. Harry & Associates, P.C.  we  work patiently with our clients to learn about their priorities and the facts of their cases so that we can put ourselves in the best position to help minimize the consequences of our clients’ Illinois traffic code violations. For more information on how we may be able to help you or a loved one with a traffic violation-related matter, call one of our experienced Illinois criminal and traffic violation attorneys today. We can be contacted online or by telephone at 630-472-9700.

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