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What Constitutes an Ordinance Violation in Illinois?

On Behalf of | Oct 21, 2019 | Criminal Defense |

DuPage County ordinance violation defense lawyer

Many people may have heard of different types of city violations, but they may not fully understand their meanings or consequences. An ordinance violation is a charge issued by local governments for violations of their municipal rules. In many cases, a person may unknowingly violate a rule because he or she did not even know the activity was illegal. It is important to note that this type of violation is typically processed in the local courts as opposed to the state circuit courts. This means it is not the same as a criminal charge; rather, it is typically civil rather than criminal in nature. However, these violations can still incur steep fines in addition to other consequences.

Examples of Ordinance Violations

The United States criminal justice system contains various levels. For example, each state has its own set of criminal statutes, and federal laws apply throughout the country and override state laws. Cities, counties, villages, towns, and municipalities have the power to pass and enforce ordinances that apply to their own jurisdictions. It can often be difficult for a person to know what constitutes a violation since they may differ from town to town.

The following are some common examples of violations:

  • Underage drinking
  • Shoplifting
  • Drug offenses
  • Domestic violence
  • Municipal traffic violations (parking tickets)
  • Littering
  • Building code violations
  • Health code violations
  • Street and sanitation violations
  • Construction and zoning violations
  • Noise violations
  • Animal control violations
  • Overgrown grass
  • Unlawful burning

Penalties for Ordinance Violations

A citation for a municipal ordinance violation is not as serious as a misdemeanor or felony charge, but an individual can still face stiff penalties. Violations can result in fines, a driver’s license suspension, or the loss of a building permit or business license. Under certain circumstances, a violation can be upgraded to a criminal misdemeanor charge. This means the violation could appear on a person’s background check.

It is important to note that someone can remove an ordinance violation from his or her record under certain circumstances. For this type of expungement, there must be no conviction in Illinois or any other state in the country.

Contact a Wheaton Criminal Defense Lawyer

Every county or local government has different laws governing certain actions or behaviors. People may inadvertently commit an ordinance violation when taking actions they do not even know are considered offenses. An experienced DuPage County ordinance violation attorney can help you build a strong defense to clear your record. The skilled legal team of Anderson Attorneys & Advisors will answer all of your questions and concerns about an ordinance violation charge. Call our office today at 630-877-5800 to schedule a free consultation.