Clerk's On-Line Case Information System Help
The Clerk of the Circuit Court of Cook County provides on-line case information as a public service. This service is intended to be used as a resource to determine the general status of historical and in-process court cases. The information is not the official record of the court. As such, it should only be used to gain a general understanding of a case's history and disposition. Accordingly, the Clerk of the Circuit Court of Cook County, its officers, and employees, are not responsible or liable for any loss, consequence, or damage resulting directly or indirectly from use of the information. If you need more information about the case, or you feel information is in error and should be corrected, please contact the Clerk of the Circuit Court of Cook County, Illinois. By using this service, the User agrees and understands that he or she is bound by the on-line access to court records Terms of Agreement .
Availability of Data
Dissemination of the data provided pursuant to this Agreement is subject to and controlled by statute, court rule and court order including but not limited to the Illinois Supreme Court's Electronic Access Policy for Circuit Court Records of the Illinois Courts (April 1, 2004) ( http://www.state.il.us/court/SupremeCourt/Policies/Pdf/PubAccess.pdf ), the Illinois Compiled Statutes, the Illinois Code of Civil Procedure, the Illinois Code of Criminal Procedure, the Illinois Supreme Court Rules, and all Special Orders and General Orders of the Circuit Court of Cook County. Please note: Court record data and information that is impounded, sealed, or expunged pursuant to law or by court rule, order of court, or other applicable rule is excluded from public access in electronic form. Access and inspection of this information is governed by the existing court rules and laws for public access of the official court record.
The case data available on-line is the electronic docket which contains brief summaries of court documents and court events in a particular case. Currently, the Illinois Supreme Court's Electronic Access Policy for Circuit Court Records of the Illinois Courts (April 1, 2004) prohibits remote access to actual case documents. The electronic information available through this service is not the official record of the court. The official court records are held and maintained in the hard copy paper files in the courthouse or other official Clerk's repositories. Any and all information contained within the on-line database is recorded as a brief summary from the paper documents with an understanding that the information is true and correct in as far as all aspects of the documents physically filed with the Clerk of the Circuit Court.
The Clerk of the Circuit Court strives to ensure that the data available on this site is current and consistent with the data available on the Clerk's Public Access Terminals. However, based on the procedures used to update the on-line databases, it may sometimes take a few days before updated information is available in the on-line electronic dockets. If you are looking for information on a very recent court filing or event, please check the Clerk's Public Access Terminals located in the courthouses or try the on-line system later.
To ensure timely display of court schedules, electronic scheduling information (other than the Black Line Trial Call) is extracted and collated four (4) days in advance of the current date. Therefore, changes or additions made during that period to court schedules are not reflected in the on-line data.
Due to the space limitations, the Case Snapshot database includes cases that are either pending or have had activity in the last six months. The Full Case Electronic Docket Search databases generally include information on all active or disposed cases going back at least ten (10) years.
Depending on the chosen on-line search option, you can search for on-line case information using several search fields including the following: case number; name (plaintiff or defendant); and filing date. The Black Line search also empowers attorneys to search using attorney code. To improve the effectiveness of your searches, you must follow the displayed format exactly and you must be very specific. However, the searches are not case sensitive.
When searching, it is important to be as specific as possible. If your initial search does not retrieve data, carefully check your spelling and search syntax.
Division Name. For the Electronic Full Case Docket and Case Snapshot searches, you must first select a Division from the provided drop-down box. By default, the Civil division is selected if you fail to pick a different division.
Case Number Searches. For case number searches, you should follow the specified format (YYYY – Division letter(s) – NNNNNN). Please note , all divisions except Chancery require six (6) digits after the division letter. Chancery cases with “CH” only have five (5) digits after the letters. If you are searching a non-Chancery case and have less then six (6) numbers after the division letters, add “0”'s to the beginning of the numeric string. Case numbers are shown with the 4-digit year configuration. ("1999", not "99")
Case Name Searches. To search by litigant name, you must first select Plaintiff or Defendant by clicking on the appropriate button. When you click the button, a black dot will appear in the button.
The Case Name Search searches the string of letters that you type. Type as many letters as of the name as possible. Proper names can be expressed and/or captured in our database in many different ways (i.e., Mary J. Jones, M. J. Jones, Mary Jane Jones, Jones, Mary J., and Jones, M. J). You may search using partial names. For example, if you are unsure of the spelling, enter only the first few letters of the last name.
The search will find any case with a party whose last name BEGINS WITH the letters you have entered. If you are unsure of the party's first name, enter only the last name in the field. This may also help to eliminate data entry errors. Be as specific as possible with your name search. The search will list all cases with similar names.
If you are having problems with a party name search, please try various permutations of the name or try to access the data through a Case Number. Please Note , Listing only the last name of a common name (such as Smith or Jones) may bring up hundreds of cases. Common names or names of litigants with many cases (i.e., Chicago or large banks or corporations) may take longer and only the first 1,000 results will be displayed.
Additionally, due to the manner in which data is entered, party names may sometimes be abbreviated and/or may omit certain punctuation (i.e., periods or commas). The following examples may be helpful:
- You may need to try partial names or abbreviations. The "City of Chicago" may be entered as "Chicago", "City of Chicago", or "City of Chgo".
- "XYZ of Illinois Corp., Inc." maybe entered as "XYZ of Illinois Corp Inc" or some similar variation.
If you know that data should be there, please keep trying or call our Internet court call help line at (312) 603-HELP (4357).
Filing Date Searches To search by the date on which the case was filed, you must use the exact format – MM/DD/YYYY.
Electronic Full Case Docket Search You search results will appear in a new browser window. The results will be organized in a table with the Case Number, the name of the first named plaintiff, the name of the first named defendant, and the filing date. To return to the on-line search page on the Clerk's website, you must close the search results browser window.
The information contained in these Internet On-line case information pages is in a searchable database format. However, due to technical limitations, once a search retrieves information, you can only search the retrieved search results using your Internet browser's search function. You can use your browser search to find any continuous string of characters or numbers.
To view the electronic docket/case information summary for a case included in your search results, click on the Case Number which is a hyperlink. To return to your search results from the electronic docket for the case number that you selected, use your browser's “Back” arrow.
Electronic Case Snapshot Search. Electronic Case Snapshots include only cases from the Civil, Domestic Relations and Law divisions. The Case Snapshots are brief case summaries including information about the parties (up to 3), attorneys who have appeared in the case, the case type, the filing date, the ad damnum (amount of damages sought), the division and district, and the most current court date including room or calendar and time. Due to space limitations, the Case Snapshot database includes cases that are either pending or have had activity in the last six months.
Search Results for the Case Snapshot appear in table form on the same page as the Electronic Case Snapshot Search. The results will be organized in a table with the Case Number, the name of the first named plaintiff, the name of the first named defendant, and the filing date.
To view the case snapshot information summary for a case included in your search results, click on the Case Number which is a hyperlink. You search results will appear in a new browser window. Note – At the bottom of the Case Snapshot, you can click on a link that will retrieve the full electronic case docket.
Electronic Docket Data
The electronic docket information for all cases includes header information including the following data elements: Case Number; Filing Date (date on which case was filed); Case Type; call type (click for brief call type explanations); Division; District; Room/Calendar; and Ad Damnum (amount of damages sought in complaint, if relevant). The information also includes Party Information consisting of the following: Plaintiff name(s) (Snapshot is limited to first three plaintiffs); Defendant name(s) (Snapshot is limited to first three defendants); Date of Service (date upon which defendant was served with process in the case); and Attorney information (name, address, telephone) for attorneys who have filed appearances with the Clerk of the Circuit Court. Please Note: Attorney information is taken from the Clerk's attorney information database which is maintained in the Law Division in Room 801 of the Daley Center. If an attorney has moved or otherwise changed information without notifying the Clerk's Office, the electronic data will reflect the original information. Please go to Room 801 to change or update information.
The Electronic Full Case Docket also includes a chronological list of all Case Activity which includes entries like the following: documents filed, orders entered; motions spindled; discovery filed; etc. Each entry under Case Activity includes the following fields: Activity Date; Participant (usually the filing or moving party); a brief text description of the activity; and Attorney. Case Activities, especially those setting or documenting a court appearance, hearing or court date may also include the following data elements: Court Date; Court Time; Court Room; Court Fee; Judge (judge creating activity); and Microfilm (a number corresponding to the documents microfilm image held by the Clerk of the Circuit Court).
Blank fields in the on-line electronic docket data case information indicate that there is no data in our database. If you believe that the on-line electronic docket information includes incorrect information, fails to include or omits information or is otherwise problematic, please contact the Division or District in which the case is pending. For Division and District contact information, click here .
Printing . To PRINT , use the PRINT function located in the drop-down FILE menu on your browser's toolbar. Choose your printer's option for PRINT CURRENT PAGE to print the information on the active screen.
Caution : We recommend you do NOT use the Print ICON on your browser to print a table from the On-line case information searches. Using the print ICON will result in a printout of everything on the page - which is often very lengthy.
Technical assistance, questions or difficulties with web browser features must be addressed with your network administrator or your Internet service provider.
If you have questions about the data or do not understand a case activity entry, you are advised to review the official court file. If you believe that the on-line electronic docket information includes incorrect information, fails to include or omits information or is otherwise problematic, please contact the Division or District in which the case is pending. For Division and District locations and contact information, click here .
Assistance, questions and/or comments about the functionality of this on-line case information access may be directed to the webmaster (click here to email Webmaster) or to the Internet court call help line at (312) 603-HELP (4357).