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Illinois DUI Law 625 ILCS 5 11-501a2

Illinois DUI Law 625 ILCS 5/11-501(a)(2) is the most common, "catch-all" section of the code under which a driver is charged. It's what most people think of when they say "Drunk Driving". Police and prosecutors can choose to include one or several different sections of the DUI law to charge, depending on the evidence they believe they have. Here we explain this section.

Illinois DUI Law 625 ILCS 5/11-501(a)(2)

The law generally states that "a person shall not drive or be in actual physical control of any vehicle within this State ...." and this commonly charged section of the Illinois DUI law explains the rest of this offense:

(2) under the influence of alcohol;

This section of the law is famously brief, and as with all such laws relying on the most pithy description possible, a great deal has been left to the interpretation of the Courts in case law. The components, or elements of the offense as lawyers refer to them, require driving or physical control, which are not the same thing. Under Illinois DUI case law, the term "actual physical control" is more a term of art than plain language in Illinois. The occupant of a vehicle doesn't necessarily need to actually be driving a car with the ignition turned on. 

In this particular section of the law, the amount of measurable alcohol in a person's blood, breath or "other bodily substance" does not matter at all. Any amount of alcohol which impairs the abilities of the driver (or person in actual physical control) of a vehicle, in any degree, is enough. In fact, many other states call this same offense Driving While Impaired, or DWI (and Illinois did so briefly). This is the most commonly charged DUI offense. Usually, the Illinois DUI law 11-501(a)(2) section is charged alongside other counts depending on the evidence available to the prosecution.

All DUI cases have a lot of components that merit careful scrutiny by a qualified Illinois DUI lawyer, and one should not immediately assume an arrest requires a guilty plea.

Give us a call to see if we can help with your 625 ILCS 5/11-501(a)2 defense.

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We regularly appear for Illinois Criminal defense, DUI defense and Traffic violations throughout the Chicago area including Cook, Lake, DuPage, Kane and Will county courts, Skokie, Rolling Meadows, Bridgeview, Markham, Maywood, Waukegan, Wheaton, Naperville, Elgin, St. Charles and more.