Illinois Supreme Court

State courts have increasingly become the default system for addressing the needs of those with behavioral health issues. Commonly cited statistics show that 64 percent of people in local jails suffer from mental illness. The rate of serious mental illness is four to six times higher in jail than in the general population, and the rate of substance use disorders is seven times higher among those in jail than in the general population.

Following up on its recent call to action, the Illinois Supreme Court Mental Health Task Force (Task Force) is hosting a series of judicially led, multidisciplinary Regional
Continue Reading Supreme Court Mental Health Task Force Leading Change

The Illinois Supreme Court announced the adoption of a policy which will require every state courthouse in Illinois to adopt individual orders or rules regarding the use of portable electronic devices in their courthouse buildings and in their courtrooms.

In adopting this policy, the Court recognizes that portable electronic devices such as cell phones, computers, tablets, and e-book readers are essential tools of today’s society.

Many courthouses already possess policies which address the needs of lawyers, jurors, and other court users and staff to possess portable electronic devices in courthouses yet some bar members of the public and self-represented litigants
Continue Reading Illinois Supreme Court Announces New Policy on Portable Electronic Devices

The Illinois Supreme Court announced today an amendment to Order M.R. 30370 concerning residential evictions. Timed to coincide with the resumption of eviction filings effective August 1, 2021, the amended Order provides for a one-month period in which the judiciary will focus on referring newly filed cases to State programs providing financial assistance to landlords and tenants.

In March 2020, Governor J.B. Pritzker declared a State of Emergency in response to the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) and the President of the United States declared the COVID-19 outbreak a national emergency. The Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (CARES Act) (P.L.
Continue Reading Illinois Supreme Court Announces Triage Period to Wind Down Eviction Moratorium

The Illinois Supreme Court today issued two new orders which will resume statutory time restrictions for speedy trials on October 1 and relax social distancing requirements in courthouses. Both orders are effective immediately.

“It is important to note that our courts remained open during the COVID-19 pandemic and thousands of court proceedings have taken place via both in-person and virtual hearings,” Chief Justice Anne M. Burke said. “However, conducting criminal jury trials has been very difficult. These two orders will help our courts prepare for a return to a full slate of jury trials.”

M.R. 30370, In re: Illinois Courts
Continue Reading Illinois Supreme Court Issues Orders on Speedy Trials and Social Distancing

Our panel of leading appellate attorneys reviews the four Illinois Supreme Court opinions handed down Thursday, June 17. In In re Application of Tax Deed, the court analyzed case-specific facts for purposes of determining whether section 22-85 of the Property Tax Code could be applied to void a tax deed. In Municipal Trust & Savings Bank v. Moriarty, the court construed section 2-202 of the Code of Civil Procedure to determine whether a private process server may serve process on a defendant in Cook County without first being appointed by the circuit court. In Roberts v. Alexandria Transportation, Inc., the
Continue Reading Quick Takes on Illinois Supreme Court Opinions Issued Thursday, June 17, 2021

Chief Justice Anne M. Burke and the Illinois Supreme Court announced today amendments to Rule 756 and Rule 751, which will give $10 from the attorney registration fee to the Illinois Lawyers Assistance Program (LAP) and an additional $10 allocation for the Supreme Court Commission on Access to Justice (ATJ Commission) to provide funding for Illinois Court Help.

The amended rules are effective July 1, 2021.

The Illinois Supreme Court Rules including Amended Rules 756 and 751 can be found here.

The $20 reallocation ($10 for LAP, $10 for Illinois Court Help) will not increase attorney registration fees. Instead,
Continue Reading Supreme Court Reallocates Attorney Registration Fee to Meet Growing Need for Assistance

Chief Justice Anne M. Burke and the Illinois Supreme Court announced today amendments to Rule 11 and Rule 371 which alter the manner of serving certain legal documents and how a rule on confidential records is applied.

The amendment to Rule 371 is effective immediately. The amendment to Rule 11 is effective July 1, 2021.

The Illinois Supreme Court Rules can be found here: http://www.illinoiscourts.gov/SupremeCourt/Rules/default.asp

Rule 11 is the “Manner of Serving Documents Other Than Process and Complaint on Parties Not in Default in the Trial and Reviewing Courts.” The amendment to Rule 11 now allows email to be used
Continue Reading Supreme Court Amends Rules on Serving Documents and Confidential Records

Our panel of leading appellate attorneys reviews the nine Illinois Supreme Court opinions handed down Thursday, May 20. Seven of the cases are civil and two are criminal.

People v. Bochenek

By Kerry J. Bryson, Office of the State Appellate Defender

Dominic Bochenek was convicted of identity theft based on the unauthorized use of another person’s credit card information to purchase cigarettes. The underlying transaction occurred at a gas station in Lake County, but Bochenek was charged in DuPage County under a provision in the venue statute which allows for the charge to be brought in the county where the
Continue Reading Quick Takes on Illinois Supreme Court Opinions Issued Thursday, May 20, 2021

The Illinois Supreme Court’s Illinois Judicial Conference (IJC) recently announced the release of a new jury orientation video which will serve as an introduction to jury service for all 24 circuit courts in Illinois.

“Jury service is a hallmark of the American justice system,” said Chief Justice Anne M. Burke, who also serves as Chair of the IJC. “This video serves as an excellent introduction for those called to jury duty and answers many questions they may have to make for a positive experience.”

Jury orientation provides an important first impression of the court for prospective jurors. This orientation video
Continue Reading Illinois Supreme Court Unveils New Jury Orientation Video

Our panel of leading appellate attorneys reviews the Illinois Supreme Court opinion handed down Wednesday, April 21. In Elam v. The Municipal Officers Electoral Board for the Village of Riverdale, the Supreme Court affirmed the decision of the Municipal Officers Electoral Board for the Village of Riverdale invalidating a candidate’s eligibility to run for village trustee in the general election because of invalid signatures on his nominating petition.

Elam v. The Municipal Officers Electoral Board for the Village of Riverdale, 2021 IL 127080

By Joanne R. Driscoll, Forde & O’Meara LLP

In a unanimous opinion authored by Justice Overstreet,
Continue Reading Quick Take on Illinois Supreme Court Opinion Issued Wednesday, April 21, 2021

Our panel of leading appellate attorneys reviews the five Illinois Supreme Court opinions handed down Thursday, April 15.

In People v. Wise, the court held that the state failed to prove that the defendant possessed a gun “on or about his person.” In People v. Johnson, the court resolved the question of whether an individual’s standing to file a post-conviction petition under the Post-Conviction Hearing Act is a proper consideration at the first stage of proceedings under the Act or whether a determination of standing is more appropriately made at the second stage of proceedings. In People v. Bass, the
Continue Reading Quick Takes on Illinois Supreme Court Opinions Issued Thursday, April 15, 2021

Our panel of leading appellate attorneys reviews the two Illinois Supreme Court opinions handed down Thursday, March 18. In People v. Burge, the Supreme Court denied a defendant’s motion to withdraw her guilty plea after she asserted that it was involuntary because she was unaware she would lose her job if she pled guilty. In Ciolino v. Simon, a defamation case that arose from a documentary about an exoneration scandal, the Supreme Court considered whether the one-year window when the suit could be filed opened when the movie premiered at a publicized film festival.

People v. Burge

By Kerry J.
Continue Reading Quick Takes on Illinois Supreme Court Opinions Issued Thursday, March 18, 2021

Our panel of leading appellate attorneys reviews the Illinois Supreme Court opinion handed down on Thursday, March 11. In Jones v. Municipal Officers Electoral Board, the court examined the decision of the Municipal Officers Electoral Board for the City of Calumet City that disqualified the plaintiff as a candidate for mayor of Calumet City because he filed his nomination papers 13 days after a referendum passed that disqualified him.

Jones v. Municipal Officers Electoral Board

By Joanne R. Driscoll, Forde & O’Meara LLP

In this administrative review proceeding, the Illinois Supreme Court examined the decision of the Municipal Officers Electoral
Continue Reading Quick Take on Illinois Supreme Court Opinion Issued Thursday, March 11, 2021

The Illinois Supreme Court announced today two amendments to Order M.R. 30370 regarding remote proceedings in adult criminal cases. The Illinois Judicial Conference’s Court Operations During COVID-19 Task Force (Task Force) recommended these amendments to avoid any ambiguity and to simplify logistical issues regarding the waivers.

The orders are available on the court website.

The first amendment is to the Title and Preamble of the order to clarify that the order does not apply to juvenile cases.

The second amendment is to section II(C) and strikes Section II(E) to state that whether the waiver by a defendant to hold
Continue Reading Illinois Supreme Court Approves Two Amendments for Adult Criminal Court Remote Proceedings

Chief Justice Anne M. Burke and the Illinois Supreme Court announced today an order for the creation of a new Supreme Court Statutory Court Fees Task Force (“Task Force”) to replace the original 15-member Task Force created under the Access to Justice Act. The new Task Force is charged with conducting a thorough review of the entire Criminal and Traffic Assessment Act (CTAA), including the various statutory fees imposed or assessed on criminal defendants and civil litigants and the fiscal impact of the new civil and criminal fee schedules. It will also identify any issues with implementation and propose recommendations
Continue Reading Supreme Court Announces Creation of New Statutory Court Fees Task Force

The Illinois Supreme Court today announced the expansion of the Remote Access Policy (RAP) for Illinois licensed attorneys and legal services providers in User Group 5. This will give Illinois attorneys expanded access to court information and documents in the 87 county courts currently integrated and certified through re:SearchIL. The expansion is effective March 1, 2021.

The full text of the RAP and the User Group Access Chart is available online.

“The Court is very pleased with this important step in providing remote access to court documents statewide,” Chief Justice Anne M. Burke said. “This has been a collaborative
Continue Reading Attorneys and Legal Services Providers to Receive Expanded Remote Access to Court Documents March 1