Cook County Clerk of the Circuit Court
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Clerk of the Circuit Court of Cook County, Illinois
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Housing (Civil and Chancery) – Introduction

Civil and Chancery Divisions

Self Help Resources

Additional Resources

Housing (Civil and Chancery) – Introduction

Housing covers landlord/tenant, renter’s rights, evictions, forcible entry and detainer actions and mortgage foreclosures. It also covers building code violations. Rent, landlord/tenant, evictions and building code violations are heard in the Civil Division . Mortgage foreclosures are heard in the Chancery Division .

Civil and Chancery Divisions

Civil Division

The Civil Division hears the following types of actions in which the amount of the claim is less than $30,000 where the event surrounding the lawsuit occurred in the City of Chicago:

Forcibles Entry & Detainer (Evictions)

A summary proceeding in which the landlord seeks to restore possession of the premises or payment of rent when the tenant has wrongfully withheld rent or possession of the premises.


A lawsuit which is brought into court by the City of Chicago in reference to housing violations, which include but is not limited to, lead paint, broken windows, broken stairs, heat cases, etc.

Chancery Division

Mortgage Foreclosures

Lawsuit filed by a lender seeking to compel payment of a mortgage. It is precipitated by non-payment of the debt, and leads to the selling of the property to which the mortgage is attached in order to satisfy the debt.

Self Help Resources

Mortgage Foreclosures

Illinois Legal Aid offers an entire page entitled Homeownership which includes a great deal of information on all aspects of homeownership from buying/selling homes to contracts to closing to mortgage. This page includes Eight Options to Avoid Foreclosure to help you stay out of our Chancery court. The Chicago Bar Association publishes a pamphlet in English and Spanish on Mortgage Foreclosures on Your House.  

Landlord/Tenant – Evictions

Illinois Legal Aid includes a great deal of information landlord/tenant, renting, renters’ rights, eviction and similar information on its website. It also includes a Tenants’ Rights Fact Sheet. Many of these resources cover topics of a much wider scope than evictions that will help a renter better understand his or her rights and obligations.

The Illinois State Bar Association also includes information relating to Landlord/Tenant and renting. It also includes a section on Renters’ Rights.

The Chicago Bar Association offers the following brochure: Eviction - Basic eviction procedure, types of notice, how a trial works and how to appeal an eviction.
Click here to view this brochure in .pdf format.

Other information can be found at the following:

· Illinois Law Help.org at Chicago-Kent College of Law

· Illinois Pro Bono.org

· Self Help Legal Center - Southern Illinois University School of Law

· U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development

Additional Resources

Illinois Supreme Court

Clerk of the Circuit Court -- Court Forms

Self Help Resources in and Around the Daley Center

Finding an Attorney

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