Lies You've Been Told about Traffic Laws | Staver Accident Injury Lawyers, P.C.
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Lies You’ve Been Told about Traffic Laws

Written by Jared Staver

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Jared Staver is a Personal Injury Lawyer based in Chicago, Illinois and has been practicing law for over 20 years.

Jared Staver

CATEGORY: Auto Accidents, Personal Injury

People break traffic laws every day, sometimes without even realizing it. But multiple traffic violations can impact your wallet, driving privileges, and insurance premiums—chances are, you’ll realize those.

Most of us know actions like speeding are illegal. However, with so many traffic laws on the books and frequent changes, there can be a lot of confusion surrounding the actual rules of the road. Drivers need to understand Illinois traffic laws and what is and isn’t true.

Here are some of the most common misconceptions about traffic laws, debunked:

Myth: You Can Only Get a DUI if You’re Driving a Car

DUI charges don’t just apply to impaired drivers of cars or trucks. In Illinois, you can get a DUI for operating many vehicles under the influence, including:

  • Golf carts
  • Motorized wheelchairs
  • Lawn mowers
  • Farm equipment
  • Watercrafts
  • Mopeds
  • ATVs
  • Motorcycles

Even horses can be considered “vehicles” under Illinois codes. Although most people don’t ride horseback to and from the bars, everyone should be mindful of DUI laws in Illinois—neigh matter the vehicle.

Myth: It’s Illegal to Drive While Barefoot

It’s a widely-believed myth that driving while barefoot is illegal. Not only is it fully legal to drive barefoot in Illinois, it’s actually legal in all 50 states.

Regardless of legality, however, using the brake and gas pedals without shoes can be uncomfortable or even unsafe. So, when it comes to your feet while driving, it’s probably best to put those dogs in a pair of clogs (or any shoe, really, but avoid driving in these types of footwear).

Myth: U-Turns are Illegal

Many people believe U-turns are illegal. While this myth can help rationalize a fear of making these maneuvers, U-turns are not always prohibited. They are typically legal as long as they’re performed safely, but it’s important to consult your local traffic code to see if, when, and where U-turns are allowed.

Myth: It’s illegal to ride in the back of a pickup truck

This misconception is only partially true. There are actually no laws in Illinois that explicitly ban passengers from riding in a pickup truck bed. However, there is a state law that requires passengers and drivers of a motor vehicle to wear a seatbelt, which means riding unrestrained in a cargo bed violates this law.

However, there are exceptions to Illinois seatbelt laws. You may be able to ride in the back of a pickup truck without a seatbelt on in certain instances, such as:

  • You are frequently stopping and traveling under 15 miles per hour between each stop
  • You have official documentation from an appropriate agency stating you cannot wear a seatbelt for medical or other valid reasons
  • The vehicle has a model year before 1965

Myth: Clerical mistakes on your ticket means it will be dropped

If your ticket was written with an error in your name, time the ticket was issued, or your license plate number, it will not automatically be dropped. The judge will likely amend the ticket to display the correct information.

Myth: Your tickets won’t follow you to another state

Unresolved tickets are like shadows. They tend to follow you everywhere. Some drivers assume going out of state means their record gets a fresh start too. However, most states share ticket and driver’s license data through the Driver License Compact. Points and fines also transfer to other states. The only states not involved in the interstate compact are Michigan, Georgia, Massachusetts, Tennessee, and Wisconsin.

Hurt in a Chicago Car Accident? Call Staver Today.

There are a lot of traffic laws and ticket myths out there. The better informed you are about traffic codes, the better driver you can be. Our car accident attorneys serve clients throughout the Chicago area, including AuroraElginHinsdaleJolietNaperville, and Waukegan. If you’ve been injured in a traffic accident, an Illinois traffic accident lawyer from Staver Accident Injury Lawyers, P.C. can help.

Contact us at (312) 236-2900 to discuss your case and get the compensation you deserve.

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(312) 236-2900
(312) 236-2900
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