The Civil Division is responsible for handling civil cases seeking damages less than $30,000. The types of cases heard include contract, property damage, personal injury, eviction, replevin, housing, attachments, and garnishments. The Civil Division is located in the Daley Center Room 602.
Civil Division Pro Se
Pro se petitioners can file for up to $3,000 in small claims. The party must act as their own attorney. Assistance is provided through the Chief Judge's Office. Pro se petitioners can visit the Daley Center Room 602 or call 312-603-5626 with any questions.
Civil Division Case Files
Case files may contain the complaint, appearances, court orders, affidavits, certificates, motions, summons, petitions, applications, notices, and half-sheets.
Frequently Asked Questions
To file a civil 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 St., Chicago, IL, 60602 or at https://services.cookcountyclerkofcourt.org/Forms/.
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, and the defendant is in the state of Illinois (check the box for Certified Mail on the summons). You may refer to “How do I serve the Defendant?” below for information on serving the defendant.
NOTE: Eviction/Joint Action cases cannot be served by Certified Mail.
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 of the Richard J. Daley Center or view the Small Claims fee schedule at https://services.cookcountyclerkofcourt.org/Forms/Forms/pdf_files/CCG0603.pdf.
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, and the defendant is in the state of Illinois. Certified Mail fees are subject to be changed by the U.S. Postal Service.