Frequently Asked Questions

No petition for Surplus may be presented until at least 30 days have passed since the entry of the Order Approving Sale. (Approximately 60-90 days after the sale.)
Parties petitioning for the turnover of surplus funds who have a case pending in Bankruptcy Court must present an order from the Bankruptcy Court authorizing the distribution of surplus funds.
Photo identification and proof of your connection to the subject property.
When you submit an application and resume online, you will receive a prompt acknowledgement of receipt directly to your email address. The Personnel Services Department receives this information and screens all applicants accordingly. After the time frame for which applications will be accepted has ended, our HR representative/staff will contact candidates who best meet the qualifications for the position. Due to the volume of applicants, you will only be contacted if you are selected to advance in the hiring process.
When a case is filed in the Law Division, it is randomly assigned via a computer program to a calendar letter. You may contact the Information Desk at (312) 603 - 5426 to obtain the Judge's information associated with the calendar letter.
You may determine your next court date by checking the Case Snapshot or contacting the Information Desk at (312) 603 - 5426.  
The Litigant Index Search and the Information Desk can help determine whether or not an individual or company is involved in a Law Division case.
You are not required to submit credentials when applying for a position. However, if you are offered employment, you will be asked to complete additional forms as well as provide additional documentation.
For all applicants, the selection process varies for each opening due to the high volume of applicants. Our Personnel Services Department screens and contacts qualified candidates after the time frame for which applications will be accepted has ended. It could take several weeks after you submit your application before someone may contact you, if you are selected for an interview.
A packet of dissolution forms is available at the Domestic Relations Division front counter upon request.   A petitioner seeking to file their own dissolution without the help of an attorney can fill out these forms and self-draft a Petition for Dissolution. 

Once the forms and attachments are completed, the petitioner will receive a case number and judge (Calendar) assignment.  Court dates can be set up at the motion counter in the Domestic Relations Division.  At a later date, if there has been no activity on the case, you will receive a white postcard in the mail notifying you of a status court date. Should you fail to appear, you could risk your case being dismissed.
If you cannot afford an attorney, you can find a lawyer's group that will represent you for no fee or a reduced fee. The Clerk's Office can provide you with a list of Lawyer Referral Services.  That information is available in Room 802 of the Richard J. Daley Center or online (Finding an Attorney).

You can also submit an Application and Affidavit to Sue or Defend as an Indigent Person, also known as the "298 Petition."  You may qualify to proceed as a Pro Se litigant (self representing litigant) without having to pay any fees.  This form is available in Room 802 of the Richard J. Daley Center.
To file a lawsuit, you must complete a Complaint form, a Summons form, as well as a Civil Division Action Cover Sheet. These forms are available in the Civil Division of the Office of the Clerk of the Circuit Court of Cook County (Clerk’s Office) in Room 601 of the Richard J. Daley Center, 50 West Washington Street, Chicago, Illinois, 60602.

Also, you will have to serve the Defendant either through the Sheriff’s Office or by Certified Mail. You may serve by Certified Mail, if your claim does not exceed $10,000 (Check box for Certified Mail on Summons.)  You may refer to “How do I serve the Defendant” below for information on serving the Defendant.

The Complaint and Summons forms can be downloaded HERE
An appeal can be filed within the district location in which your case was tried. The fees for an appeal are as follows:
Less than 100 pages $110.00
More than 100 pages, less than 200 pages $185.00
Each page in excess of 200 pages $  .30

Yes, you will be required to pay a filing fee. The fee will vary depending on the amount of your claim. You may pick up a schedule of filing fees at the Customer Service Counter in the Civil Division in Room 601 in the Richard J. Daley Center, or go to the Civil Division page and view the fee schedule on the bottom-right of the page.
This is called surplus funds. The bank is only entitled to what is owed to them and their fees. The surplus, minus any liens due, belongs to you. If there are surplus funds, you should be notified by the foreclosing attorneys for the bank. The court will determine if the Clerk's Office or Sheriff's Office will hold the funds.
Yes, you will be required to pay the Clerk’s Office a nominal fee to serve by Certified Mail. NOTE: You may only choose to serve by Certified Mail if your case is under $10,000.  Certified Mail fees are subject to be changed by the U.S. Postal Service. 
After you have completed the Complaint, Summons and Civil Division Action Cover Sheet, get a Return Date from the blackboard in 601 or 602 of the Richard J. Daley Center. You will need to put a Return Date on both the Complaint and Summons forms. The Return Date is important because this is the date by which the party you are suing (the Defendant) must respond.
Unfortunately, there are no remedies available for tenants living in foreclosed homes.  However, tenants can file for an extension of time to allow for relocation. The tenants must file a motion to request an extension before the judge assigned to the case.
No.  The Plaintiff does not need to come to court on the Return Date unless you are filing a Forcible Detainer (Eviction), Replevin, Detinue or Revival of Judgment case. The Return Date is only important for the Defendant, the person or party you are suing-- because the Defendant must respond to the lawsuit on or before the Return Date. Think of the Return Date as a response date by which the Defendant must respond to your lawsuit.

Note: The return date is an actual court date when filing the following types of lawsuits: Forcible Detainer (Eviction), Replevin, Detinue or Revival of Judgment.
Pay filing fee and get a case number. Take your completed Complaint, Summons and Civil Division Action Cover Sheet to the cashier at Station 3 in Room 602 of the Richard J. Daley Center to pay the proper filing and Certified Mail fees. You will then be assigned a case number (for example, 04 M1 123456).

NOTE: If serving by Certified Mail leave the Complaint and Summons forms with the cashier. (You may only serve by Certified Mail if the case is under $10,000).
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