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Chicago’s New Driving Laws Explained

In 2023, Illinois underwent a transformation in its traffic laws. The new regulations bring about crucial changes that every Chicago driver should know about.

These changes address the surge in carjackings, introduce community service penalties for school bus violations, streamline disability verification, and adopt national standards for driver's education, all with the ultimate goal of promoting safer driving practices and reducing accidents across the state. If you recently suffered a crash because another motorist violated a traffic law, then you should seek support from an experienced Chicago car accident attorney. They may be able to help recover payment for your injuries.

HB3772: Carjackings and Vehicle Liability

Illinois has responded to the alarming increase in carjackings within the state by enacting HB3772. This legislation ensures that individuals will not be held accountable for violations, fees, fines, or penalties related to their stolen or hijacked vehicles. To qualify for reimbursement of fees incurred after reporting the vehicle theft or hijacking, owners, lessees, or their representatives must provide evidence of timely reporting to law enforcement. However, it's essential to note that reimbursement for towing and storage fees is limited to a maximum of $1,000.

This law aims to alleviate the financial burden on victims, potentially leading to increased reporting of such incidents. While it may not directly affect traffic patterns, it could indirectly impact law enforcement activities, especially in cases involving stolen vehicles.

SB03793: Community Service for School Bus Violations

SB03793 introduces a significant change in penalties for certain driving violations. Failure to stop for a school bus displaying visual signals during pupil drop-off or pickup, or speeding more than 20 miles per hour over the limit in a school zone or on public school property, will now result in community service as a penalty.

This change is expected to enhance safety around school zones in Chicago by deterring reckless driving behaviors. Drivers are more likely to exercise caution when approaching school buses, reducing the risk of accidents involving children, which is a significant concern in a densely populated city like Chicago.

SB03216: Licensing Verification by Physical Therapists

Under SB03216, the Illinois Vehicle Code is amended to authorize licensed physical therapists to verify an individual's disability status. This change streamlines the verification process, allowing qualified professionals to confirm a person's disability, which may be required for various purposes, such as obtaining accessible parking permits or other accommodations.

While this may not directly affect traffic patterns, it simplifies the procedure for individuals with disabilities to obtain accessible parking permits. Easier access to such permits could result in a slight increase in demand for accessible parking spaces in Chicago, potentially affecting parking availability in certain areas.

HB04716: Revised Driver's Education Standards

HB04716 brings significant changes to the driver's education curriculum in Illinois. Instead of relying on state-specific standards, the course content and learning requirements will now align with the national Novice Teen Driver Education and Training Administrative Standards. These updated standards, developed by the Association of National Stakeholders in Traffic Safety Education in partnership with the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration, cover various aspects of safe vehicle operation.

The adoption of national novice teen driver education standards is a substantial change that aims to promote safer driving practices among young drivers in Chicago. By aligning the curriculum with national guidelines, it seeks to improve the quality of driver's education, potentially reducing the number of inexperienced drivers on the road who may contribute to accidents.

Summary of New Bills Going Into Effect in Illinois in 2023

There are many other bills going into effect in Illinois in 2023. For a full summary of the new legislation, follow this link.

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