I got a DUI in Wisconsin with an Illinois driver’s license. Now what?
Fight Out of State DUI Charges and Avoid Harsh Drunk Driving Penalties
Illinois drivers convicted of a DUI in Wisconsin will face penalties in both states, including revocation of operating privileges. Milwaukee DUI lawyer Tom Grieve explains six things you need to know about the consequences of getting a Wisconsin OWI conviction with an Illinois license.
You Are Only Guilty If You Are Convicted®
How a Wisconsin DUI Conviction Affects Drivers with an Illinois License
1. Illinois will find out about your Wisconsin OWI.
Wisconsin is not part of the Interstate Compact. This means Wisconsin will not directly tell Illinois you have received a DUI conviction in the state of Wisconsin. However, your conviction will be uploaded to a nationwide database. If Illinois looks at that database, they will find your DUI and can take action on your Illinois driver’s license. Illinois may not immediately check that database; however they will likely check it when you renew your license.
If you are convicted of a DUI, Illinois will revoke your driver’s license for one year. You will also be required to obtain SR-22 insurance and attend DUI classes. There are no additional criminal or financial penalties imposed by Illinois courts.
Wisconsin will impose DUI penalties on your Wisconsin operating privileges. Those penalties include a period of revocation, and you may be required to install an ignition interlock device (IID) on your vehicle. However, you are not entitled to an occupational license in Wisconsin if you do not have a Wisconsin driver’s license. Therefore, while your revocation time is still pending in Wisconsin, you may not drive without risking additional criminal charges. Once your revocation period has ended, you may be able to reinstate your driving privileges in the state of Wisconsin by paying a reinstatement fee and perhaps completing some other classes.
In Illinois you are not guaranteed the right to an occupational or restricted permit to drive. However, you can request a meeting with a hearing officer through the Illinois Secretary of State. That hearing officer will determine whether you will be eligible for a restricted license during the time of that one year revocation. If the hearing officer grants you a restricted permit, you will be required to have an ignition interlock device on your vehicle during the time you have that restricted permit.
5. Reinstating your Illinois driver's license is complicated.
In Illinois, reinstatement is not automatic. A driver’s license revocation following a DUI conviction is an indefinite revocation pending review by the hearing officer. If you want to reinstate your Illinois driver’s license following a DUI conviction, you must take several steps. First, your revocation period must be complete. You must take DUI classes within 6 months of your date of conviction. You must pay a $500 reinstatement fee. You must also obtain SR-22 insurance and maintain that insurance for three years. Reinstatement will only be granted if you have completed all of these steps and if the hearing officer grants you reinstatement.
6. Your 1st DUI is a criminal offense everywhere but Wisconsin.
In Wisconsin, an OWI first offense is not a criminal offense. It is a civil forfeiture that is treated similarly to a traffic ticket. Therefore, it is not a criminal conviction. In Illinois, and every other state in the United States, a first offense OWI is a criminal offense. Therefore, if you are convicted in Wisconsin of a first offense, it is not a criminal conviction. An OWI 2nd or greater conviction is a criminal conviction.
Experienced Wisconsin DUI Attorney Defends Drivers Facing Out of State OWI Charges
Grieve Law has a track record of helping clients get OWI charges reduced or dropped. Wisconsin drunk driving penalties have increased over the years, and a DUI conviction will be with you for the rest of your life. Contact Milwaukee’s top drunk driving attorney today for a free consultation on your charges.