Current Status of the General Assembly: The General Assembly has not met since March 5. As the Covid-19 pandemic increased its intensity, the legislature began cancelling regularly scheduled session weeks. Upon cancellation, both Speaker Madigan and Senate President Harmon announced any return to session by the legislature would be a week-to-week decision based on the best available facts to ensure everyone’s safety.
There was a lot discussion about returning at some point in April to vote on essential legislation – the budget, hospital assessment, legislation necessary to handle the immediate healthcare and long-term economic crises caused by the pandemic, etc. The four leaders and Gov. Pritzker began discussing and compiling lists of what they deemed essential legislation. There has also been discussion of possibly returning to session during the summer to tackle non-essential legislation.
Very soon after the legislature cancelled its first week, Gov. Pritzker used his powers via his previous disaster declaration to issue a stay at home order. That order was set to expire on April 7, but has now been extended through April 30 following the reissuing of the original disaster declaration.
This ended any thought of an April return by the General Assembly. The leaders are now preparing for a May window to address essential legislation after we have hopefully seen the apex of the virus spread and a discernible slowdown in infections. There is still some discussion of a non-essential legislation period into the summer months.
At this point, both chambers have divided members into working groups based on broad subject matter they plan to address when back in session. Those groupings include the following:
House – Access to Healthcare, Budget and Pensions, Capital Infrastructure & Funding, Child Welfare, Corrections and Justice, Economic Recovery, Elementary & Secondary Education, Energy, Ethics, Government Administration, Healthcare & Human Services, Higher Education, Labor & Unemployment Insurance, Local Government, Medicaid and Hospital Assessment, and Public Health
Senate - Budget, Cannabis, Capital, Constitutional Amendments, Criminal Justice, Economic Revitalization, Education, Energy, Ethics, Executive Orders & Government Continuity, Gaming, Healthcare Affordability, Licensure, Local Government, Pensions, Regulatory Relief, and Unemployment Insurance
We do not know how the groups will convene, which members are assigned to which groups in every chamber, or how they will access information from stakeholders or be open to input.
All changes to law at this point are coming via emergency executive order from Gov. Pritzker and emergency rulemaking powers from his agencies. Please see below for more on this.
Current Status of ILTA’s “Market Reform” Legislation: We waited all winter and into the spring to see the revised version of this bill. Finally, ILTA produced its most recent version just days before the General Assembly suspended operations. What would have been filed as Amendment 1 to SB 3193 has not become official since the legislature has not been back to formally proceed. However, this will be our starting ground if or when this is taken up again in the future.
ILTA asked all stakeholders to meet on March 19, but that session day was cancelled. The negotiations are now on hold.
One important note is the bill will be led by a new sponsor, Sen. Omar Aquino (D-Chicago) as new Senate President Harmon has relinquished all of his previous legislative issues to concentrate more on leading his caucus.
There should be no expectation or fear this legislation be deemed essential at this point.
Current Status of Actions taken by Gov. Pritzker under his Emergency Powers: The most important action taken has been the Stay at Home Order issued and reissued through April 30.
Of most important note was the designation of real estate, appraisal and title services as essential professional services allowed to continue during the Stay at Home Order. Also, the separate order that allowed for remote witnessing and counterparty signing.
Please see all of the timeline of Covid-19 actions taken and emergency executive orders issued to date by Gov. Pritzker in other news posts on this site.
COVID-19 Executive Order Number 7 (2020-09) – Executive Order to Expand Telehealth Services and Protect Health Care Providers in Response to COVID-19, March 19, 2020
COVID-19 Executive Order Number 6 (2020-08) – Executive Order in Response to COVID-19, March 17, 2020
COVID-19 Executive Order Number 5 (2020 – 07) – Executive Order in Response to COVID-19, March 16th, 2020
o Exemption from this Executive Order for businesses located in airports, hospitals, and dining halls in colleges and universities.
COVID-19 Executive Order Number 4 (2020 – 06) – Amendment to Executive Order 2020 – 05 In Response to COVID-19, March 15th, 2020
COVID-19 Executive Order Number 3 (2020 – 05) – Executive Order in Response to COVID-19, March 13th, 2020
COVID-19 Executive Order Number 2 (2020 – 04) – Executive Order in Response to COVID-19, March 13th, 2020
COVID-19 Executive Order Number 1 (2020 – 03) – Executive Order to Extend Application Deadline for Adult-Use Applications Due to COVID-19, March 12th, 2020
COVID-19 Executive Order Number 11 (2020-13) – Suspension of Transfers to IDOC, March 26, 2020
COVID-19 Executive Order Number 10 (2020-12) – March 24, 2020
COVID-19 Executive Order Number 9 (2020-11) – Amendments to Prior Orders, March 23, 2020
COVID-19 Executive Order Number 8 (2020-10) – Stay-At-Home Executive Order in Response to COVID-19, March 20, 2020
COVID-19 Executive Order Number 18 (2020-20) – Suspension of Recording of Verbal Attestation for Public Benefits, April 6, 2020
COVID-19 Executive Order Number 17 (2020-19) – Increasing Healthcare Capacity, April 1, 2020
COVID-19 Executive Order Number 16 (2020-18) – Extension of Prior COVID-19 EOs, April 1, 2020
COVID-19 Executive Order Number 15 (2020-17) – Extension of Cannabis License Application Deadlines, March 28, 2020
COVID-19 Executive Order Number 14 (2020-16) – Suspension of Vehicle Repossessions, March 28, 2020
COVID-19 Executive Order Number 13 (2020-15) – Suspension of School Testing and Attendance Requirements; Daycare, March 27, 2020
The following are in effect for the duration of the Disaster Proclamation unless otherwise noted.
COVID-19 Executive Order Number 12 (2020-14) – Remote Witnessing and Counterparty Signing, March 26, 2020
· During the duration of the Disaster Proclamation, electronic remote witnessing through two-way A/V by Notary Publics is allowed.
· This also applies to any required act of witnessing under state law.
· Notwithstanding Illinois law and regulations, absent an express prohibition in a document against signing in counterparts, all legal documents may be signed in counterparts. This includes deeds, last wills, and powers of attorney for healthcare. Notaries should be sent via email or fax copies of the signature pages.
As you know, the Illinois Real Estate Lawyers Association has been monitoring the case in Cook County between the Illinois Land Title Association (ILTA) and the Recorder of Deeds. (The original complaint can be read here.)
The litigation ensued because of the Recorder's refusal to accept any documents titled "Affidavit of Heirship" or "Affidavit of Survivorship", unless also accompanied by a court order. It is worth noting that this policy was instituted by Karen A. Yarborough, though it was continued by Edward M. Moody when Ms. Yarborough became the County Clerk.
It is our firm belief that the Recorder has an obligation to record presented documents and that the role of the recorder is not to analyze a document's content.
I am happy to report that the judge in the matter, Hon. Michael T. Mullen, granted ILTA's motion for summary judgment earlier today. (You can click here to read the order.)
A big thank you to ILTA for filing this suit and pursuing it to a successful resolution.
John G. O'Brien
Chairman & President
Rights Of Heirs and Legatees and Their Purchasers In Illinois Real Estate - Paul Peterson
The Cook County Treasurer’s Office is sending nearly 30,000 homeowners refunds totaling $8.3 million without requiring an application, another example of using technology to make things easier for taxpayers, Treasurer Maria Pappas said today.
“We’ve taken steps in the past to make the refund application process easier,” Pappas said. “Now we’re trying to eliminate the application altogether.”
Overpayments occur for a variety of reasons, including the simple mistake of paying more than is owed on the tax bill. More often, overpayments result from a reduction in property taxes after the bill was paid. Here are details about the 29,752 refunds:
To see if you are entitled to a refund, visit cookcountytreasurer.com and take these steps:
The refunds are due to tax overpayments made since 2013. Using bank, credit card and property records, the Office has electronically determined who made the overpayment in these cases, making refund applications unnecessary.
It’s finally here! Fourteen months after the drafting process began, the Multi-Board 7.0 has been released. Get access to the Contract, as well as its accompanying forms in the members only section of our website.
Please also join us at one of our upcoming meetings in January, where members of the 7.0 drafting committee will be on hand to discuss the form.
• January 9, 8:00am (Elk Grove)
• January 15, 9:30am (Oak Lawn)
• January 15, 1:00pm (Libertyville)
Next week, the Illinois House will vote to override Governor Rauner’s veto of SB 65, which amends the Title Insurance Act. The legislation provides that all title insurance policies issued in conjunction with a residential real estate closing be issued by the same policy-issuing entity, unless otherwise agreed by the parties.
Championed largely by PNTN, this is an effort to dissuade the usage of two title companies in a single transaction, which can lead to additional costs for a Buyer (who may not receive a discount from a simultaneously-issued policy) and ambiguities on coverage when claims arise.
The list of Illinois legislators to contact to vote in favor of SB 65 is available here. Find your House Representative by address location here.
P.O. Box 4956
Oak Brook, IL 60522-4956
Telephone: (312) 600-7720
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