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Illinois Scotts Law

Updated on March 15, 2023 → Under

Breaking Scott’s law in Illinois is a serious offense. As a result of the violation, you could end up with a hefty penalty. Suppose you are in a situation where you have broken the move-over law, also known as Scott's law. In that case, you need an experienced Illinois Scotts Law attorney to represent you.

As a person living in the counties of Rolling Meadows, Waukegan, Elgin, Lombard, Aurora, or surrounding areas, call the Dohman Law Group firm. We are ready to represent you and to give you solutions. You can probably find all of the information you need on the internet. Still, for a more in-depth analysis of your case and to talk to someone willing to help, we are here for you. 

What Is Scott's Law and How Did It Originate?

Even though many people are not aware of Scott's law, it has been in existence for many years.

Recently, many people have been getting educated and are getting to know more about it. So, what does the Scott's law require a person to do?

As a driver who has seen a stationary emergency vehicle that is not on the move by the side of the law, Scott's law requires you to:

  • Change the lane that you are in. Make sure that the lane you change to is not the same as an emergency car’s lane.
  • If it is not safe to go to the next lane or you cannot make the move, you should slow down while still maintaining a safe speed suitable for road conditions. Maintain a safe distance until you pass the scene where the authorized emergency vehicle is located.

Since it is not a new law, as with many laws that have been enacted, there is a story behind it. After the death of a Chicago Fire Department member who was a Chicago fire department medic known as Scott Gillen, the law was enacted. As a driver was traveling, he hit Scott, an emergency personnel, in the lane next to where the emergency vehicle was parked as he was busy assisting motorists involved in a car accident.

The law has evolved over time. After the death of 3 state police officers in Illinois in 2019, stiffer penalties were added in 2020.

According to The Move Over Law, What Is Considered An Authorized Emergency Vehicle?

Knowledge is power. To effectively implement the move-over law, you should know vehicles that are classified as authorized emergency vehicles.

  • Police vehicle
  • Ambulance
  • Fire station vehicles
  • Tow truck
  • pound vehicle
  • maintenance vehicles
Contact our traffic defense lawyers if you have broken Scott's Law in Illinois.

These are not the only cars that are classified as authorized emergency cars. Any vehicle that has been equipped to move back and forth repeatedly has oscillating lights and rotates can be considered an emergency vehicle. Under the code of section 12-215, when the owner or the one operating the vehicle is on official duties, it is considered an authorized emergency vehicle.

This law shows that there are several other authorized vehicles offering services that are protected under the move-over law. If, for example, a tow truck is not moving and the lights have been adequately lit up, you may be required to implement the move over law.

Penalties for Breaking Illinois Scotts Law

When a law is broken, there are consequences. Depending on the extent and damage caused, it will determine the cause of action or punishment served by the court.

After a trial and you are found guilty, here are some of the things that can happen.

  • Even if it is your 1st offense, you will be required to pay a fine of $250 up to $10,000 or more
  • As a second time you offender, you may have to pay a minimum fine of $750 up to $10,000 or more

When you break Scott's law, you may have to pay fines and face criminal penalties. If you do not move when you are supposed to move, and this ends up in you causing damage to another vehicle, you have the likelihood of spending 364 days in jail. 

If, as a result of disobeying Scott's law, you end up causing death and injury to an individual, you will face enhanced penalties. You will spend 1 to 3 years jail time in the Illinois Department of corrections.

Getting a ticket due to breaking Scott's Law could result in the suspension of your drivers license. If you cause damage to another person’s property, you can face driver license suspension for three months to a year as a result of breaking the law.

The driver’s license suspension will take an even longer time if the driver has caused injury or death due to breaking the move over law. When damage is caused, the driver can lose their driving privileges for 6 months up to 2 years. If death occurs, the driver’s suspension of driving will last for a period of 2 years.

Do You Get a Pass Because You Didn’t Know About the Law?

Ignorance is no defense. The law has been in existence for several years in Illinois.

It is understandable for a driver to not have knowledge of the law. However, the argument will not help them in regards to breaking the law. The Illinois legislature has recognized the importance of offering education to drivers on this law.

One amendment of the move over law is funding towards offering more education to drivers regarding the Scotts law. Also, a written driver’s test will be required to have at least one question about the move over law.

You Have Broken the Law, Who do You Call?

Breaking the move over law can result in you incurring heavy penalties and even facing jail time. If you have received a ticket after breaking the Scott law, you need a skilled move-over law attorney to offer you traffic ticket defense representation. We can help you! We at the Dohman Law Group have experienced Illinois traffic lawyers who can represent you and help keep your driving record clean. You may not know what to do, but we do! Give us a call, tell us your side of the story, request services, and let us do the rest! Contact us for an initial consultation!

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