Young adults going to college are entering a stressful and exhilarating portion of their lives. While they face a lot of anxiety keeping up with their difficult classes and planning for their future, they also have a lot more freedom than before. Many look forward to the college traditions associated with alcohol once they turn 21 in their university to have some fun before they go and get jobs after graduation.
Unfortunately, all of those future plans can come to a grinding halt with one simple DUI charge. If you are a college student, there are several consequences a DUI can bring on your life during and after college. It is critical to be aware of these ramifications so you can be cautious with your future actions.
Underage DUIs have it worse
Most college students turn 21 during their junior year at school, but many freshmen and sophomores cannot wait to join in the drinking festivities. However, many fail to realize the punishments they could receive from Illinois’s zero tolerance law when it comes to underage alcohol possession and DUIs.
Individuals under 21 caught possessing or consuming alcohol could face suspension of their driving privileges for 6 months and a maximum $2,500 fine with up to one year in jail. Those caught driving while under the influence receive the same punishments along with their driving privileges suspension extending to at least two years. Additional fines and suspensions can occur for recurring convictions or if they are caught transporting alcohol.
Students who are over 21 charged with DUI receive similar punishments, but the driving privilege suspension is not as severe. Older students should also not allow younger individuals to drink in their home, as doing so can result in a Class 4 felony if severe injuries occur from this. Illinois state police are always on the lookout on college campuses for underage drinkers, especially when they know that the average college student spends more money on alcohol than books.
School and career goals face obstacles
Even without DUI charges, the majority of Illinois college graduates have plenty of student debt to deal with after graduation. Students with DUI charges can make that debt much worse in more ways than one.
Along with the fine, license suspension and potential jail time, the police report your incident to the college. As a result, you can lose your scholarship funding, campus housing and may even be expelled from college. You may have to change career paths or schools if your education was heavily reliant on that funding. It also becomes significantly harder to apply for jobs in your field with a DUI on your record.
College students that receive DUIs during their attendance receive ramifications that negatively impact their immediate and far futures. If you face a potentially life-changing verdict, you should seek legal assistance to reduce these charges to ensure that your pre- and post-graduate plans remain intact.