• Attorney Jennifer Wirth

Can I Drive Anywhere? A Basic Overview of the Lawful Purpose Permit.


Click here for a video summary of the Lawful Purpose Permit:

In January of 2022, the Illinois Secretary of State will offer a newly-created permit for many revoked drivers, entitled the “Lawful Purpose Permit” (LPP). The LPP allows eligible petitioners to drive for any lawful purpose, up to twelve hours a day, six days per week, within a 200-mile radius of their residence.

In this article, I briefly summarize how the LPP changes permit restrictions for certain petitioners, as well as answer common questions posed about the new permit.

What is a “Lawful Purpose?

In the past, the Secretary of State would only issue restricted driving permits to revoked drivers for specific driving purposes, such as work, school or medical purposes. Although these classifications remain in effect for some revoked drivers, the LPP allows eligible petitioners to drive for any lawful reason, within a 200-mile radius, up to twelve hours a day and six days per week.

The “lawful” restriction is pretty straightforward. If a permittee robs a bank while driving with an LPP, the permit doesn’t cover driving to and from the bank to commit the robbery. Conversely, a permittee can use their LPP to drive to the bank to legally deposit or withdraw money. So long as the purpose is “lawful,” the LPP allows for such driving within the parameters of the permit.

This is a positive change in the law for petitioners who quality for the LPP. LPP holders may drive for many leisure activities, such as shopping, working out at the gym, going to the movies and/or visiting family and friends. Once a person holds an LPP, the permittee can choose any lawful purpose in which to drive, subject to the time, day and mileage radius restrictions.

Will Lawful Purpose Permits Require a Breathalyzer?

The LPP does not change whether or not a breathalyzer is required to drive on a permit. If the Secretary of State has deemed you to be a BAIID petitioner, you will be required to have a breathalyzer installed while driving on an LPP.

Who Can Apply for a Lawful Use Permit?

Effective January 1, 2022, the following groups of petitioners and/or permittees can apply for an LPP:

- Any petitioner that is eligible for a probationary permit can apply for a LPP at any hearing held after January 1, 2022;

- Any petitioner that is currently driving on a restricted probationary permit can apply for a LPP through an informal hearing officer after January 1, 2022;

- Any five-year BMO Petitioner can apply for a LPP, even if they are in hardship, at any hearing held after January 1, 2022; and

- Any five-year BMO Petitioner that is currently driving on a hardship permit can apply for a LPP through an informal hearing officer after January 1, 2022.

The following petitioners are not eligible for a Lawful Purpose Permit under the new law. These petitioners are restricted to hardship permits under the original classifications (i.e., work, school, support group, etc.):

- An applicant that is considered a “Lifetime Petitioner,” as a result of four or more DUI convictions; and

- An applicant that is not subject to the five-year BMO permit and is currently in hardship.

Please remember that this summary is being published in anticipation of the new law taking effect on January 1, 2022. During the implementation process, the Secretary of State may change policy or procedure.

We offer free consultations if you would like to discuss the drivers license reinstatement process. You can reach the office by calling 312.461.0400 or emailing us at jenniferwirth@msn.com.

This article does not serve as legal advice. All persons are encouraged to consult with a qualified attorney to determine the best course of action in their particular case. There is no attorney/client relationship formed through our website or reading our materials.