My question involves vehicle registration or title in the state of: Illinois
In 2008, I purchased a car that was registered in my name in the state of Illinois. Over the following 4 years, my brother used my car for transportation to and from work, driving the Illinois Tollway system frequently. I received 27 tollway violations in that time, but my car had an I-Pass. Through some miscommunication, I assumed the tolls were being paid by my brother, the driver of the vehicle.
I recently received a letter from the State of Illinois saying that they have suspended my license because of these tickets. After the Illinois Tollway Authority confirmed that the I-Pass was defective, they are asserting a debt of over $80,000. I know that I should have been more vigilent about resolving this situtation much earlier, but a few months ago I went in and spoke to a ITA representative. She told me that if I gave her $3,000 that day, they would consider my account settled. Of course, in my naivete, it did not occur to me to get that in writing. I gave her the money, and then received a call later that day saying that I didn't qualify for that particular program, and that I would owe the remainder of the $80,000 by the end of the week to assure that my license was not suspended.
The car's registration was suspended, as was my license. I no longer own the car and no longer drive because of this situation. I do not have access to $80,000, and the ITA seems unwilling to negotiate any kind of settlement or payment plan. I've looked into applying for bankruptcy, but it appears that these fines qualify as a non-dischargable debt. Do I have any other options in this situation? Would retaining an attorney be beneficial? If so, what kind of lawyer?
This situation has put my whole life on hold, and I'm desperate for any advice anyone can offer. Thank you for your time, and thank you in advance for your advice.