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Public School Zone sign on road with 30 miles per hour when flashing text

Illinois Statute: 625 ILCS 5/11-605

This citation will start to become a lot more common once again with schools looking to be back in full swing for Fall 2021.  Here’s what you need to know to avoid being issued this citation.

The Law

On a school day when school children are present and so close thereto that a potential hazard exists because of the close proximity of the motorized traffic, no person shall drive a motor vehicle at a speed in excess of 20 miles per hour while passing a school zone or while traveling on a roadway on public school property or upon any public thoroughfare where children pass going to and from school.

Additional Requirements of the Illinois Traffic Law

What is considered a school:

  1. A public or private primary or secondary school.
  2. A primary or secondary school operated by a religious institution.
  3. A public, private, or religious nursery school.

School Day: 7 am through 4 pm

Appropriate signs must be posted giving drivers proper due warning that a school zone is being approached. Signs must indicate the school zone and the maximum speed limit in effect during school days when school children are present.

Penalties

This is a petty offense with a maximum penalty of up to a $1,000 fine.

You cannot receive court supervision if you plead guilty or are found guilty of this offense.  This means the judge can only give you a conviction if you are guilty of speeding in a school zone.

1st offense

Mandatory fine of $150 plus court costs

Conviction on your driving record

2nd or subsequent offense

Mandatory fine of $300 plus court costs

Conviction on your driving record

Can your license be suspended for this offense?

It can, but this depends on several factors, including your age and prior driving record.

Fighting a Speeding in a School Zone Ticket

Generally, speeding tickets are difficult to win at trial, so defense attorneys will attempt to negotiate this type of a ticket in order to amend the charge to an offense where you can receive supervision. The goal is to avoid a conviction going on your driving record.

If the prosecution doesn’t budge, then you need to go to trial in a last ditch effort to avoid a conviction going on your record.

As you can see, there is a lot of room for debate around this statute, and a qualified trial lawyer should be employed to best resolve this citation.