Illinois Driving and Traffic Laws


Whenever you move to a new state, you must get reacquainted with the traffic laws for that particular area. While many laws are consistent across the country, each state also has its own rules that specifically apply to their location. Illinois is no exception to this rule, with a few laws that motorists may not think about if they are moving in from another state. This article will help you learn the rules of the road in Illinois so you are ready to take the wheel safely and confidently.

Using Cell Phones

One law that is unique to Illinois is regarding cell phone use while on the road. Unlike other states, Illinois allows its localities to determine the rules of cell phone use for each individual location. In Chicago, for example, hands free legislation has made it illegal for drivers to use cellular devices while driving. There are also laws against cell phone use by minors and school bus drivers across the state. In fact, if a bus driver is caught talking on a cell phone while transporting children to and from school, he could face a fine of up to $250. It is important to understand the details of this law before driving in Illinois to avoid ticketing or fines from illegal cell phone use.

Drunk Driving

States also vary somewhat in the rules regarding drunk driving. In Illinois, a first drunk driving offense will result in a one-year suspension of your license. The penalties become even stiffer if the driver was transporting children under the age of 16 at the time of the violation. A second drunk driving offense results in a three-year suspension of your license, jail time and community service. Again, penalties are much more severe if a child under the age of 16 was in the car at the time of the offense. It is very important to understand that Illinois is quite serious about drinking and driving and will punish offenders appropriately.

Insurance Coverage

Another important aspect to Illinois driving regulations is the amount of insurance coverage drivers are required to carry. Illinois differs from many states by requiring drivers to have a certain amount of uninsured motorist bodily injury coverage. This coverage protects you in the event you are in an accident with another motorist that does not have insurance. The minimum amount of coverage required is $20,000 with a $40,000 limit. Drivers are required by Illinois law to include this coverage in their insurance policies.

Knowing the rules of the road in the state where you live or visit is essential to maintaining a clean driving record. When your record is blemish-free, your insurance rates will be lower as well.