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Driver’s License Reinstatement

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The Illinois Restricted Driving Permit (Hardship License)

If you have recently had your driver’s license suspended in Illinois, you may have found that it is very difficult to navigate your life. Many people who have lost their licenses have found it difficult to get to work, attend school, or do simple errands like going to the grocery store or bank. When seeking Illinois driver’s license reinstatement you may first have to obtain a Restricted Driving Permit (RDP).

What is a Restricted Driving Permit?

A Restricted Driving Permit is exactly what it sounds like. It is a permit that allows you to drive with very specific restrictions. It is often used as a probationary device in the driver’s license reinstatement process. You can apply for a Restricted Driving Permit through an Administrative Hearing (Formal) or Informal Hearing, depending on your circumstances.

How Do I Request A Formal Hearing For An RDP?

To request a formal hearing for a restricted driving permit in Illinois, you need to contact the Secretary of State’s office. You will give them written reasons for the request, such as a detailed explanation of the extreme hardship(s) that exists, evidence of completion of required alcohol or drug programs, and any relevant court or police documents. The request should also include your full name, contact information, driver’s license number, and signature.

Am I Eligible for a Restricted Driving Permit in Illinois?

There are certain circumstances in which the Illinois Secretary of State will require you to drive on an RDP before you can have your driver’s license reinstated. The first is if you are eligible for full reinstatement, however, the SOS determines that you should drive with an RDP for a probationary period.

The other is if you are not eligible for full reinstatement of your license but can show that there is a specific need for you to drive because other means of transportation are not available. Of course, in either case, you must demonstrate that you are not a risk to public safety and have resolved whatever issues landed you in this predicament.

What Is A Breath Alcohol Ignition Interlock Device (BAIID)?

If a person has multiple DUI convictions and is granted an RDP for driving relief, then they will be required to install what is known as a Breath Alcohol Ignition Interlock Device (BAIID). This mechanism is used to prevent the driver from operating the vehicle if they have consumed alcohol. Once a driver breathes into the device, it measures the driver’s blood alcohol concentration (BAC) before allowing the vehicle to start. The driver must blow into the device, and if the BAC reading is below the predetermined limit, the vehicle will start normally.

What Driving Privileges & Restrictions Exist With An RDP?

Restricted Driving Permits are available for specific driving needs: employment, education, medical, support group meetings, family education, daycare, and a few more out-of-the-ordinary situations.

What Happens After I Receive a Restricted Driving Permit?

In most cases, you will be issued a Restricted Driving Permit that is valid for 12 months. After driving on that permit for 8 months, you can apply for a new 12-month permit.

If you are eligible for full reinstatement, you can apply for Illinois driver’s license reinstatement after driving on that permit for 9 months. In some cases, you may be required to drive with an RDP for up to five years, and in very rare cases you might be required to drive on an RDP for the rest of your driving lifetime.

For more information, contact Johnson & Goldrich, P.C. Our team of experienced attorneys can help you get your driving privileges back.

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