Is It Illegal To Sleep In Your Car In Illinois?

Naomi O'Colman

Is It Illegal To Sleep In Your Car In Illinois

Is It Illegal To Sleep In Your Car In Illinois

You may have heard that it’s illegal to sleep, stand or park in your car on a street or public place in some states. So the question is “is it illegal to sleep in your car in Illinois?“.

Well, the plain answer is NO, there is no law that prohibits you from sleeping in your car but you need to be aware of certain things.

Is it illegal to sleep in your car in Illinois?

To use highway rests in Illinois, you should check the rules issued by the Illinois Department of Transportation. Nevertheless, there are no rules regarding sleeping in a car, so it’s legal to sleep in your car in this state.

What can happen is that the locals can call the police to report any suspect if they feel unsafe. Thus, to avoid this circumstance, you shouldn’t park in a neighborhood, try to find a rest stop.

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Illinois rest areas rules

Here are some typical rules that should be highlighted to drivers:

  • You can park up to 3 hours in a rest area
  • Overnight sleeping is not allowed
  • You can’t cook in a rest area
  • If your car has any problem, don’t try to fix it in a rest area
  • It’s prohibited to use ornamental plants, public address systems, lighted signs and trash receptacles;
  • The maximum fine imposed on violators of rest area rules is $100.00;

To know more about IDOT rules on rest areas, you can check their site here. (

Where to park in Illinois

There are about 30 rest areas along the highways in Illinois and they’re safe places to park your car. Also, you can use the facilities there. Just check the signs on the road to help you pinpoint them.

Can you get a DUI for sleeping in your car in Illinois?

If you decide to get a DUI while sleeping in your car, the judge will sentence you according to the amount of alcohol you had on your breath or where you keep the car key.

If you’re sober and have no “actual physical control” of the car, then you’re fine. No actual physical control of the car means that you’re sleeping with the car keys on you.

When your blood alcohol level is less than .08%, then it’s not a DUI because that’s the legal limit for driving.

Final Words

In short, it’s legal to sleep in your car in Illinois as there are no rules against it. However, if you want to use highway rest areas, check IDOT rules first to enjoy your journey.