Illinois again raised its penalties against drivers distracted by cell phones.  The minimum fine as of July 1, 2020 is $1,000 for aggravated use of an electronic communication device when causing an accident resulting in great bodily injury, permanent disability, disfigurement or death.  Also effective July 1, 2020, your driver’s license may be suspended for twelve months.

If the accident resulted in great bodily harm, permanent disability or disfigurement to another, you can be charged with a Class A misdemeanor.  If the accident causes death, the charge is a Class 4 felony.

If you did not cause injury, penalties are $75 for a first offense, $100 for a second offense, $125 for a third offense, and $150 for every offense thereafter.  As with other moving violations, your license may be suspended if you commit three offenses within one year.

The law also now prohibits streaming a video while driving.

Electronic communication devices include hand-held wireless telephones or personal digital assistants and portable or mobile computers, but do not include GPS or devices that are physically or electronically integrated into the vehicle.

If you have been charged with a traffic offense, contact an experienced attorney immediately. An attorney can review your case for your best possible defense.  The law does contain several exceptions.  For instance, you may use a hands-free device or you may use a cell phone while parked on the shoulder or stopped in normally obstructed traffic with your car set in park or neutral.

If you have questions about this or another related Illinois criminal or traffic matter, please contact Matt Keenan at 847-568-0160 or email matt@mattkeenanlaw.com.

Reference: 625 ILCS 5/12-610.2.     See also 625 ILCS 5/6-206.

Besides Skokie, Matt Keenan also serves the communities of Arlington Heights, Chicago, Deerfield, Des Plaines, Evanston, Glenview, Morton Grove, Mount Prospect, Niles, Northbrook, Park Ridge, Rolling Meadows, Wilmette and Winnetka.)


About mdkeenan

A criminal and school law attorney with over 17 years of experience, I have successfully represented clients all over the Chicago area. My practice includes DUI, felony, criminal, misdemeanor, homicide, internet crime, retail theft, traffic offenses, cyberstalking, drug crimes, weapons violations, domestic battery and juvenile crime. I also represent families involving school cases. My clients come from all over the Chicago area including Skokie, Wilmette, Niles, Northbrook, Glenview, Evanston, Winnetka, Highland park, Northfield, Park Ridge, Des Plaines and Mount Prospect. I am a member of the ACLU and the Illinois State Bar Association. I serve as a volunteer for First Defense Legal Aid. Se habla espanol.
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