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Do I need a lawyer for being ticketed 85mph in a 55mph zone?

Chicago, IL |

I am over 21. Very cleaning driving record. They took my drivers license as bail and I have a mandatory court appearance. What am I likely facing? (costs and sentences?)

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Attorney answers 6


NEED a lawyer? Probably not; you can be convicted and sentenced without one. Almost certainly you WANT a lawyer. Rely on experienced criminal defense counsel for preciise information regarding costs and sentence.

Best wishes for an outcome you can accept, and please remember to designate a best answer

This answer is offered as a public service for general information only and may not be relied upon as legal advice.


Class B misdemeanor, no longer a traffic ticket. Yes you need a lawyer.


Although not required, having a lawyer should be recommended (at a minimum speak to one - many of us offer free consultations). You should know that if you were charged with 86mph in a 55mph zone, this offense would be charged as a misdemeanor rather than petty offense (31-39 over the limit is a Class B). Supervision is likely if you have a good driving record but not guaranteed (court costs are $179 PLUS fine in Chicago). Consult with an attorney to discuss your record and the circumstances surrounding the traffic ticket. More information on traffic tickets in Chicago are available at the links below.

The information contained in this answer is offered for informational purposes only. This information does not constitute legal advice, attorney advertising, or establish an attorney-client relationship. Individuals with questions in any area of the law should consult a qualified attorney licensed to practice in that individual's jurisdiction.


As Ted Harvatin said, this is a class B misdemeanor, punishable by up to 180 days in jail and/or a fine of up to $1,500 (plus court costs). If convicted, you will be a convicted criminal! Yes, you will be a convicted criminal just for speeding. You should retain an attorney to discuss the possibilities of challenging the charge or getting it reduced to a regular speeding ticket.


It seems there may be some confusion in the answers as to whether this is a misdemeanor. If you were going 85mph then this is NOT a misdemeanor. However, if you're ticket indicates you were going 86mph then it IS a misdemeanor and you most certainly should consult with a lawyer. The maximum a driver can be cited for traveling before it reaches misdemeanor level is 30mph which seems to be the case here. But as previously stated, 31-39mph over the limit is a class B misdemeanor. You are still supervision-eligible and in some instances may have the charge reduced down from a misdemeanor to a petty traffic offense with the help of counsel. Feel free to contact my office regarding this situation.


This ticket is a petty offense,but it is probably a good idea to find an attorney that handles traffic offenses. You don't "need" a lawyer, just like you don't "need" a plumber to install a toilet, however, for the best possible results and convenience, a lawyer can be very helpful.