The following quick facts are intended to provide a basic understanding on the reinstatement of driving privileges process before the Secretary of State of Illinois. Please call De Fries Law Offices at (312) 726-8735 to discuss your specific case in greater detail.

What is the difference between my drivers license being suspended or revoked?

Loss of driving privileges for a definite period of time. An individual may apply for a Restricted Driving Permit (RDP) during a suspension; however, some mandatory suspensions may not allow any driving relief. Also, after the suspension period expires, a reinstatement fee is typically the only requirement. No Formal/Informal hearing is required for reinstatement.
Loss of driving privileges for an indefinite period of time. To restore revoked driving privileges, a Formal or Informal hearing is required. All Formal Hearings are held at the Administration Hearing Division of the Secretary of State.

When can I seek full reinstatement of my driving privileges?

Once you have reached your Projected Eligibility Date you are eligible to apply to the Secretary of State for the full reinstatement of your driving privileges.

What if I have not yet reached my projected eligibility date?

If there is a period of time remaining on the Projected Eligibility Date, a Petitioner can only apply for a Restricted Driving Permit (RDP). In order for a Petitioner to be considered for a RDP - (Commonly referred to as a “Hardship License”) an “Undue Hardship” must be present.

What is the difference between a formal and informal hearing at the secretary of state?

Formal Hearing:
Generally, for revoked Petitioners who have multiple DUI dispositions or a driving offense dealing with a fatality. A Formal Hearing must be requested in writing with a $50.00 application fee. A Petitioner can have a Formal Hearing every 90 days.
Informal Hearing:
Generally, for revoked or suspended Petitioners that have a single DUI disposition. Informal Hearings are conducted on a walk in basis. A Petitioner can have an Informal Hearing every 30 days.

What exactly is a Restricted Driving Permit (RDP)?

A Restricted Driving Permit (RDP) – (Commonly referred to a “Hardship License”) is a form of driving relief that allows an individual to legally on a part time basis. Generally, a Restricted Driving Permit (RDP) is granted for employment, medical/support, or educational purposes. A Restricted Driving Permit (RDP) can be issued up to six (6) days per week and up to twelve (12) hours per day. Restricted Driving Permits a granted for a period of one year. Once a Petitioner has drove on his/her RDP for 75% of the term (9 months) a hearing can be held for full reinstatement.

What are the chances of getting my drivers license reinstated after a single hearing?

It is rare for a Petitioner to have his/her drivers license reinstated after a single hearing. The Secretary of State uses the issuance of a Restricted Driving Permit (RDP) as a “probationary device.” A common result for a well prepared De Fries Law Offices client is the issuance of a RDP (hardship license) after the Initial Formal Hearing.

What does it take to get your drivers license reinstated by the Secretary of State?

The Petitioner has the burden of proving to the Secretary of State that he/she has

  • satisfactorily addressed the underlying alcohol/drug problem
  • that the Petitioner would be a safe and responsible driver in the future
  • and the Petitioner is no longer a risk to the public at large.

Do I need to hire a lawyer to go with me to my reinstatement hearing?

Having a lawyer present at your reinstatement hearing is not required, but is highly recommended. In my years as a Prosecutor at the Secretary of State, I rarely witnessed an unrepresented Petitioner present a case sufficient on their behalf. However, just hiring a lawyer is not enough. An experienced reinstatement attorney will greatly increase the likelihood of success and get your driving privileges restored in less time.

What is the difference between De Fries Law Offices and other firms that handle drivers license reinstatement hearings?

As a former Prosecutor for the Administrative Hearings Division of the Secretary of State, I have vast experience on the requirements and steps necessary to attain driver's license reinstatement. At other firms, you might have a lawyer show up on the day of the hearing, spend little time on your file or just give you canned questions that will likely be asked at your hearing. Your experience at De Fries Law Offices will be significantly different. At De Fries Law Offices, your file will be thoroughly reviewed with you present, practice hearing(s) will be conducted to get you familiarized with the reinstatement hearing process, Anthony W. De Fries will personally attend your hearing and the Order from the Secretary of State will be reviewed will you so that you fully understand the result.