Illinois has two types of speeding laws: a "basic speeding law" and "absolute limits." This article explains the differences between the two and the consequences of a speeding violation.
Illinois's basic speeding law prohibits driving at a speed that is "greater than is reasonable and proper with regard to traffic conditions and the use of the highway, or endangers the safety of any person or property." In other words, motorists must always drive at a safe speed. What a safe speed is will depend on the circumstances. For instance, 55 miles per hour might be safe on a bright, sunny day. But if it's dark and the road is icy, going 55 miles per hour could be dangerous and a violation of the basic speeding law.
There is no trick to how Illinois's absolute speed limits work: If the absolute speed limit is 50 miles per hour and you drive faster than that, you've violated the law. Illinois's absolute speed limits include:
The consequences of a speeding ticket depend on the circumstances. But generally, the possible penalties are:
For speeding violations in school zones, the minimum fines are $150 for a first offense and $300 for a second or subsequent offense.
Violations that take place in a construction or maintenance zone carry minimum fines of $250 for a first offense and $750 for a second or subsequent violation.
Depending on the circumstances, a speeding violation could lead to a "reckless driving" conviction. And if a motorist kills another person while speeding, reckless homicide charges are a possibility.
Generally, a speeding violation adds demerit points to the motorist's driving record. Accumulating too many points leads to license suspension.