Is Driving Barefoot Illegal in Illinois?

It isn’t illegal to drive barefoot in Illinois. but you could be cited for failure to exercise due care in the case of an accident.
Written by Tiffany Leung
Reviewed by Jessica Barrett
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There are no laws that deem barefoot driving in
Illinois
to be illegal, even if you are told otherwise. However, driving without proper footwear can be a safety concern and you could be cited for failure to exercise due care if you get in an accident. 
There have been myths floating around saying that driving barefoot isn't legal. However, if you’re one to enjoy driving without any footwear, we have some good news for you.
Jerry
, the
car insurance
super app, is here to bust the myth of barefoot driving! It is, in fact, actually legal in all 50 states and the District of Columbia. However, that isn’t the full story—some states, including
Illinois
, still urge drivers to wear proper shoes when driving, and you could be charged with penalties if you get into an accident without wearing any shoes. 
If you’re ready for some fun barefoot driving facts in Illinois, keep reading! 
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Is it illegal to drive barefoot in Illinois?

It is not! Driving barefoot in Illinois has always been legal. 
This urban myth was busted thanks to Jason Heimbaugh, who spent the summer of 1994 writing to every state DMV (and Washington D.C.). He asked if barefoot driving was legal in every jurisdiction and he got the same answer back over the summer: yes! Thus the barefoot driving myth was officially busted.
With the consensus from every state, it’s safe to say that it is indeed legal to drive barefoot in Illinois. However, don’t rush to drive without any shoes just yet—Illinois law enforcement is allowed to give citations if barefoot drivers are involved in an accident. If the collision was related to your lack of shoes, you could be cited for failure to exercise due care. 

Is it safe to drive barefoot?

While it is legal to drive barefoot anywhere in the US, most states suggest that drivers still wear proper footwear while operating their car since barefoot driving is unsafe
When you choose to go barefoot while driving, you end up decreasing your control over the vehicle
  • Your braking force decreases when you drive barefoot
  • Your bare foot has less traction compared to shoes, especially if they’re wet
  • Bare feet may be a distraction for some drivers
  • The chances of serious foot injuries are much higher
On the other hand, driving barefoot can be safer compared to driving in certain footwear, including flip-flops and high heels. If you’ve been out-and-about in your flip-flops on a hot Illinois summer day, it may be a better idea to drive barefoot! 
The bottom line: the safest way to drive is to wear closed-toe shoes with good traction. However, you won’t be breaking the law if you choose to drive barefoot—it may even be safer compared to driving with flimsy footwear like flip-flops. 
MORE: The best road trips in Illinois
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How to save money on car insurance in Illinois

You can save money on your Illinois
car insurance
policy by shopping for low rates with
Jerry
, regardless of what you put on your feet. 
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