• Thu, May 28, 2020 11:04 AM | Anne Hengehold (Administrator)

    The Illinois General Assembly wrapped up its Special Session in the early morning hours this past Sunday. There was an incredible amount of legislative action during the four-day period. During special sessions, legislation is formally limited to those issues specifically stated in the official proclamation. The issues that were able to be considered, per the proclamation, were as follows: 

    - The COVID-19 pandemic or other disasters

    - The state budget and its implementation

    -  Economic recovery, infrastructure projects, and funding thereof

    - The explanation, arguments for and against the Progressive Income Tax

     Laws or authority scheduled to sunset prior to June 1, 2021

    - The 2020 General Election and the State Board of Elections

    - The hospital assessment program 

    As a part of the four days, lawmakers were able to pass a budget, an expansion of election laws, a hospital assessment plan, language for voters on the upcoming graduated income tax ballot issue, agreed upon changes to workers’ compensation and unemployment insurance, Medicaid expansion, COVID-19-related property tax relief, and other measures meant to address the current crisis.

    More relevant to IRELA members, the General Assembly took up a few issues of importance for the industry and the bar.

    1.     Passed - Remote Notarization – SB 2135 (p. 11-14)
    The General Assembly codified Governor Pritzker’s recent emergency executive orders on this issue:
    - Executive Order 2020-14 (original authority)
    - Executive Order 2020-18 (extends authority and adds overnight mail)
    - Executive Order 2020-33 (extends authority)
    The bill allows the changes in law to continue until 30 days after the expiration of the COVID-19 gubernatorial disaster declaration (currently set to expire on May 30).  The bill also took up some new changes, including (i) a requirement of substantial compliance to the listed requirements during the attestation and technology use in the remote two-way audio/video communication and (ii) a hold harmless on the validity of actions negatively impacted by “technology issues.”
    2.     Not Passed - Landlord-Tenant Issues – SB 3066
    This bill was pushed by the Progressive Caucus and took on multiple iterations before the sponsor finally relented without being able to reach agreement with concerned parties. In summary, the bill attempted to address rent and mortgage payment moratoriums, rent control, and eviction reforms for certain periods of time during and after the COVID-19 crisis. Her efforts were stalled, in part, by the Realtors and legislators concerned it went too far. The sponsor has promised to continue working on the bill and wants to take it up in veto session scheduled for November 17-19 and December 1-3.
    3.     Passed - Illinois Housing Development Authority Emergency Relief Funds – SB 264 (p. 108)
    As an alternative to more comprehensive approach of SB 3066, the General Assembly passed $396 million in residential housing relief funding through the Illinois Housing Development Authority. The funding will come in the form of grants and be available for emergency rental and mortgage assistance, as well as subordinate financing. There will be $296 million available to those generally impacted by the COVID-19 crisis and an additional $100 million available to those impacted by COVID-19 and in disproportionately impacted areas.
    4.     Not Considered - ILTA Market Reform Bill

    The market reform bill was not heard during the Special Session. The new bill sponsor, Sen. Omar Aquino, plans to take this issue up again during the fall veto session. We should expect there to be negotiations with the interested parties during this time.

    Here is the last version of the bill as written by ILTA – Amendment 1 to SB 3193. This version has not been filed yet.

  • Sat, April 11, 2020 11:00 AM | Anne Hengehold (Administrator)

    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. 

  • Sat, April 11, 2020 10:33 AM | Anne Hengehold (Administrator)

    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

    • Beginning March 19th and during the duration of the Disaster Proclamation, health insurers regulated by the Department of Insurance are required to cover all costs of telehealth services by in-network providers that deliver clinically appropriate medically necessary covered services and treatment.
      • Issuers may establish reasonable requirements, including documentation and recordkeeping, to the extent consistent with this order. Issuers shall notify providers of necessary instructions to facilitate billing requirements. 
      • Utilization review requirements may not impose requirements more stringent than for the same in-person treatment.
      • For telehealth services that related to COVID-19, insurers shall not impose any prior authorization requirements.
      • Insurers shall not impose any cost-sharing requirements for telehealth services provided by in-network providers except for those in High Deductible Health Plans if the care is not deemed preventative care.  
    • EO does not apply to “excepted benefits” as defined in federal rules, however, it does apply to limited scope dental, vision, long-term care, accident and specified disease coverage. 
    • Disclosure prohibition and written consent provisions of the Illinois Mental Health and Developmental Disabilities Confidentiality Act are suspended for the duration of the Disaster Proclamation. 
    • For medical licensees whose license has lapsed or been inactive for less than three years, continuing education requirements and reinstatement fees are waived for reinstatement. This applies during the duration of the Disaster Proclamation.


    COVID-19 Executive Order Number 6 (2020-08) – Executive Order in Response to COVID-19, March 17, 2020

    • During the duration of the Disaster Proclamation and 30 days after, expiration of vehicle registrations, driver’s licenses, permits, parking decals, temporary and permanent identification cards are suspended. Hearings conducted by the Illinois Secretary of State are also suspended.
    • Requirements for filing statements of economic interest are suspended for the same time period described above. 


    COVID-19 Executive Order Number 5 (2020 – 07) – Executive Order in Response to COVID-19, March 16th, 2020

    • Beginning March 16th at 9 pm, all businesses in Illinois that offer food or beverages for on-premises consumption must suspend and not permit on-premises consumption. 
      • Includes restaurants, bars, grocery stores, and food halls.
      • Service for off-premise consumption is permitted and encouraged.
        • Includes carry-out, in-house delivery, third-party delivery, drive-through, curbside pick-up, and catering services.
        • Need environment for adequate social distancing in carry-out sales.

    o            Exemption from this Executive Order for businesses located in airports, hospitals, and dining halls in colleges and universities.

    • Beginning March 18th, all public and private gatherings in Illinois of 50 of more people are prohibited for the duration of the Gubernatorial Disaster Proclamation. 
      • Amends Executive Order 2020 – 04, which previously prohibited gatherings of 1,000 people or more.
      • Includes community, civic, public leisure, faith-based events, sporting events with spectators, concerts, conventions, fitness centers/health clubs, bowling alleys, private clubs, theaters, and any similar event or activity. 
      • Exceptions for venues that provide essential goods and services.
        • Includes, grocery stores, hospitals, pharmacies, gas stations, banks/credit unions, and shelters.
    • The Illinois State Police, the Illinois Department of Public Health, the State Fire Marshal, and the Illinois Liquor Control Commission are directed to cooperate with one another to enforce this Executive Order. 
    • This Executive Order does not amend or supersede the authority of the Illinois Department of Public Health.
    • Requirement of the Unemployment Insurance Act for a one-week waiting period for unemployment insurance claims is suspended for those who are unemployed or otherwise eligible for benefits during the Gubernatorial Disaster Proclamation. 
    • Provisions of the Open Meetings Act requiring or relating to in-person attendance for members of a public body are suspended during the Gubernatorial Disaster Proclamation.
      • Requirement that members of a public body must be physically present.
      • Conditions limiting when remote participation is permitted.
    • Public bodies are encouraged to postpone their business where possible.
    • When meetings are necessary, public bodies are encouraged to provide video, audio, or telephonic access to meetings.


    COVID-19 Executive Order Number 4 (2020 – 06) – Amendment to Executive Order 2020 – 05 In Response to COVID-19, March 15th, 2020

    • Schools operated by the Illinois Department of Juvenile Justice, the Illinois State Board of Education, or the Illinois Department of Human Services may remain open for educational purposes provided that they are able to exercise necessary precautions to protect the health and safety of students and staff.
    • Supersedes contrary provisions of prior Executive Orders.
      • Provisions that are not contrary will remain in effect from prior Executive Orders.


    COVID-19 Executive Order Number 3 (2020 – 05) – Executive Order in Response to COVID-19, March 13th, 2020

    • Beginning March 17th, all public and private pre-K-12 schools must close for educational purposes through March 30th.
      • Schools may remain open to provide food and other non-educational services.
      • Schools will still be used as election polling locations.
    • Definition of “chronic absence” from school is suspended during the Gubernatorial Disaster Proclamation.
    • Requirement to receive school board approval to establish an electronic-learning program is suspended during the Gubernatorial Disaster Proclamation.
      • No public hearing necessary.
      • No 30-day communication requirement necessary prior to implementation.
      • E-learning programs must be approved by the regional office of education of intermediate service center for the school district.
        • Must ensure the specific needs of students are met.
          • Special education.
          • English learners.
        • Cannot deny plans for failing to meet the required 5 clock hours of instruction or schoolwork if the plan provides substantial student learning opportunities.
      • E-learning programs may exceed the number of emergency days approved in the school calendar.


    COVID-19 Executive Order Number 2 (2020 – 04) – Executive Order in Response to COVID-19, March 13th, 2020

    • Beginning March 13th, all public and private gatherings in Illinois of 1,000 or more people are cancelled until the end of the Gubernatorial Disaster Proclamation. 
      • Includes concerts, festivals, conferences, sporting events, other planned events where social distancing measures cannot be maintained.
      • Does not include school or work attendance.
    • Beginning March 16th, the James R. Thompson Center is closed to members of the public for the duration of the Gubernatorial Disaster Proclamation.
      • Exceptions for:
        • Necessary conduct of state business,
        • To obtain services from state agency or constitutional office,
        • Operate a business located in the building,
        • Public access businesses located on the ground floor through exterior entrances.
    • Beginning March 13th, the two-year continuous service requirement for state employees to receive advancement of sick leave is suspended for the duration of the Gubernatorial Disaster Proclamation.


    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

    • Extend submission deadline for applications in the Cannabis Regulation and Tax Act from March 16th to March 30th.
      • Craft grower license application.
      • Infuser license application.
      • Transporter license application.
    • Requirements to submit applications in-person are suspended.
    • Beginning at 5 pm on March 12th, the Illinois Department of Agriculture will only be accepting applications by mail, until the new deadline of March 30th.

  • Sat, April 11, 2020 10:31 AM | Anne Hengehold (Administrator)

    COVID-19 Executive Order Number 11 (2020-13) – Suspension of Transfers to IDOC, March 26, 2020

    • Beginning March 26th at 5 P.M. and through the duration of the Disaster Proclamation, all transfers to the Illinois Department of Corrections from county jails are suspended. IDOC Director can make limited exceptions at their discretion for limited essential transfers.


    COVID-19 Executive Order Number 10 (2020-12) – March 24, 2020

    • During the duration of the Disaster Proclamation, the provision of the Health Care Worker Background Check Act that prohibits individuals from being hired as certified nursing assistants if they have been inactive on the Health Care Worker Registry is suspended if: the individual has been inactive for no more than 5 years, was in good standing at the time of inactivity, and completes and submits forms required by IDPH.
    • During the duration of the Disaster Proclamation, the provision of the Health Care Worker Background Check Act limiting conditional employment for certified nursing assistants to three months is suspended. It is now 6 months after which they must complete a fingerprint background check.
    • During the duration of the Disaster Proclamation, the 30-day prior notification requirement for juvenile inmate release is suspended. Department of Juvenile Justice shall take steps to notify State’s Attorneys as far in advance and as quickly as possible.
    • During the duration of the Disaster Proclamation, the monthly exam requirement of the Miners’ Examining Board is suspended.


    COVID-19 Executive Order Number 9 (2020-11) – Amendments to Prior Orders, March 23, 2020

    • Amends EO 2020-10 to clarify facilities that are Human Services Operations where individuals may leave their home to work or obtain services.
    • Reiterates that the term Human Services is defined broadly to preserve access.
    • Nothing in the EO 2020-10 shall alter or diminish the State or local government’s ability to order a quarantine or the closure of a location during the duration of the public health emergency. Additionally, clarifies that local governments retain the authority to issue stricter requirements than the governor’s EO.
    • Day care centers –
      • Day care centers granted an emergency license for children of employees exempted by EO 2020-10 to work as permitted.
      • Licensing requirements suspended for family homes that receive up to 6 children during the duration of the Gubernatorial Disaster Proclamation.
    • E-learning ISBE prior approval requirement suspended during the duration of the Disaster Proclamation.
      • No public hearing or prior notification requirements for staff, students, and parents
      • However, e-learning programs must be verified by the regional office of education or intermediate service center for the school district.
      • E-learning programs adopted pursuant to EO may exceed number of emergency days in the approved school calendar.
    • 14-day notification requirement of inmate release suspended during Disaster Proclamation.
      • Department of Corrections shall take steps to ensure notification as far in advance and as quickly as possible to the State’s Attorney.


    COVID-19 Executive Order Number 8 (2020-10) – Stay-At-Home Executive Order in Response to COVID-19, March 20, 2020

    • Beginning March 21st at 5 PM through April 7th, residents are order to stay at home with the following exceptions. To the extent that residents are outside their home, they should follow Social Distancing guidelines. Exceptions are as follows:
      • Essential Activities:
        • Health Care – visiting a doctor, obtaining medical supplies, prescriptions
        • Necessary Supplies – Groceries, household items, necessities to facilitate Work From Home (WFH)
        • Outdoor Activities – Physical activity in parks or rec areas except for playgrounds. Social Distancing must be observed.
        • Work – Carry out Minimum Basic Operations or function of Essential Businesses
        • Aid in Care – Traveling to care for family, friends, pets is allowed
      • Essential Government Functions
        • All services provided by the State and all lower-level units of government “needed to ensure the continuing operation of the government agencies or to provide for or support the health, safety and welfare of the public.” This includes first responders, law enforcement, court personnel, emergency dispatchers, etc. Each unit of local government will determine its essential employees critical to the performance of Essential Government Functions. 
      • Operation of Essential Businesses or Operations. These include Healthcare and Public Health Operations, Human Services Operations, Essential Government Functions and Essential Infrastructure and the following:   
        • Stores that sell groceries or medicine
        • Food, beverage, and cannabis consumption and agriculture
        • Charitable and social service organizations
        • Media
        • Gas stations and auto repair and supply
        • Financial institutions
        • Hardware and supply stores
        • Critical trades
        • Mail, post, shipping, delivery, and pick-up services
        • Educational institutions –  distance learning, critical research allowed but classes still closed until April 7th
        • Laundry
        • Restaurants for off-premises consumption – includes third-party delivery apps
        • Supplies to WFH
        • Essential Business and Operations supplies
        • Transportation – including rideshare and public transit
        • Home care services
        • Residential facilities and shelters
        • Professional services – includes legal, accounting, real estate, insurance services
        • Day cares for exempted employees
        • Manufacturing, distribution and supply chain for critical products and industries
        • Critical labor union functions
        • Hotels and motels
        • Funeral services  
    • Non-Essential businesses must cease operations except for Minimum Basic Operations
      • Exclusive Work-From-Home (WFH) is allowed
      • Minimum Basic Operations. These include:
        • Maintain the value of inventory, preserve the physical condition of a plant or equipment, security, payroll and benefits processing
        • Facilitate WFH
        • Must comply with Social Distancing requirements
    • All public and private gatherings of any number outside the home are prohibited except for limited purposes. Any gathering of 10 or more is prohibited unless exempt.  
    • All places of amusement are closed
    • Travel – All travel except for Essential Travel and Essential Activities by any mode is prohibited.
    • Healthcare Operations defined in Sec. 1 (7) – construed broadly to minimize disruption
    • Essential Infrastructure – See Sec 1 (9) for a full list, but it includes – food; construction, especially to respond to the public health emergency, but also housing; airport operations and maintenance; utilities; distribution centers; oil refineries; public transportation, including ports; waste collection; cybersecurity operations; and internet, video and telecommunication systems.
    • Essential Travel – allowed for Essential categories and actions detailed above as well for non-residents to leave and to return to a place of residence from outside the state. 
    • Social Distancing Requirements
      • 6-foot distance from others
      • Hand washing for at least 20 seconds
      • Regular cleaning of high-touch surfaces
      • Essential Businesses and Operations and those Minimum Basic Operations must:
        • Designate six-foot distances
        • Have hand sanitizer regularly available
        • Designate separate operating hours for vulnerable populations
        • Post online whether facility is open and procedures for remote access.
    • All state, local, county enforcement of eviction orders must cease.

  • Sat, April 11, 2020 10:31 AM | Anne Hengehold (Administrator)

    Executive Orders:

    COVID-19 Executive Order Number 18 (2020-20) – Suspension of Recording of Verbal Attestation for Public Benefits, April 6, 2020 

    • During the duration of the Gubernatorial Disaster Proclamation, the requirement that telephone applicants for public assistance provide an audio recording of their verbal attestation is suspended. A simple verbal attestation properly documented by the State is sufficient.
    • Additionally, unsigned mailed applications for public benefits may be signed by verbal attestation by phone, properly documented by the State.


    COVID-19 Executive Order Number 17 (2020-19) – Increasing Healthcare Capacity, April 1, 2020

    • During the duration of the Gubernatorial Disaster Proclamation, “healthcare facilities” includes “any government-operated site providing health care services established for the purpose of responding to the COVID-19 outbreak.”
    • “Healthcare Professional” means all those licensed or certified as such OR those who are “working under the direction of the Illinois Emergency Management Agency (IEMA) or DPH in response to the Gubernatorial Disaster Proclamations.”
    • “Healthcare Volunteer” means all volunteers or medical or nursing students who do not have licensure who (i) are providing services, assistance, or support at a Health Care Facility in response to the COVID-19 outbreak and are authorized to do so; or (ii) are working under the direction of IEMA or DPH in response to the Gubernatorial Disaster Proclamations.”
    • All Health Care Facilities, Professionals and Volunteers are directed to “render assistance” to the State in support of its efforts to fight COVID-19.
      • For Facilities, this must include increasing the number of beds, preserving personal protective equipment or taking necessary steps to treat COVID-19 patients.
      • For Professionals, this means providing healthcare services or working under the direction of IEMA or IDPH.
      • For Volunteers, this means providing services, assistance, or support at a Facility or working under the direction of IEMA and IDPH.
    • Facilities, Professionals, and Volunteers are immune from civil liability in the event of a death or injury when providing assistance or services in response to COVID-19 except in the case of gross negligence or willful misconduct.


    COVID-19 Executive Order Number 16 (2020-18) – Extension of Prior COVID-19 EOs, April 1, 2020

    • All COVID-19 EOs (EOs 2020-03 through 2020-17) are extended through the duration of the Second Gubernatorial Disaster Proclamation, which currently extends through April 30th.


    COVID-19 Executive Order Number 15 (2020-17) – Extension of Cannabis License Application Deadlines, March 28, 2020

    • Applications for the following cannabis licenses are extended through April 30th: craft grower, infuser, and transporter. This supersedes a previous executive order which had extended the deadline to March 30th


    COVID-19 Executive Order Number 14 (2020-16) – Suspension of Vehicle Repossessions, March 28, 2020

    • Beginning March 27th and through the duration of the Disaster Proclamation, provisions in the Vehicle Code related to vehicle usability and allowing for repossessions are suspended. This does not suspend the requirement to make payments or fulfill other obligations pursuant to the terms of the loan.
    • In-classroom training requirements for private security and fingerprint vendors. Testing can be done online.


    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.

    • Provisions in the School Code specifying the school term and requiring approvals for changes are suspended. This EO does not relieve school districts of the requirement to provide at least 185 days to insure 176 of actual pupil attendance. Nothing in the EO shall prohibit school employees, pursuant to their contracts, from receiving additional compensation for additional time worked as a result of the extension of the school term.
    • Provisions providing for the calculation of daily pupil attendance are suspended.
    • Illinois State Board of Education (ISBE) may implement rules allowing the State Superintendent of Education to address the following:
      • Minimum requirements of the school calendar and school day
      • Create, define, and determine the use of “Remote Learning Planning Days”
      • Create, define, and determine the use of “Remote Learning Days”
      • Provide additional guidance pursuant to the terms of this order.
    • Beginning March 27th, all public school districts and eligible entities that receive funding from ISBE to administer and implement a grant program for preschool education or an early childhood block grant may provide childcare services for children (age 0-12) of employees exempted from the Stay-at-Home order (EO-2020-10). This does not affect these entities’ ability to continue to serve those already identified and enrolled in these programs. 


    • The following provisions of the Illinois School Code, 105 ILCS 5/2-3.71 (Pre-School/ Early Childhood), are suspended:
      • Requirements regarding the age of children to be served
      • Selection process, first prioritizing at-risk children and then children with a family income less than four times the poverty guidelines in the Federal Register
      • The licensure requirements for providing childcare services to children of employees exempt from EO 2020-10.
    • Program age requirements are suspended in regards to children of employees exempt from EO-2020-10.
    • Prohibition on communicating, opening, considering, and accepting school construction bids electronically is suspended.


    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.   

  • Sat, April 11, 2020 10:26 AM | Anne Hengehold (Administrator)

    COVID-19 Timeline:

    • April 6th – EO issued allowing simple verbal attestations for public benefits applications.
    • April 1st  Second Gubernatorial Disaster Proclamation issued through April 30th. All COVID-19 EOs extended through this date. EO issued allowing unlicensed medical and nursing students to provide healthcare assistance related to the pandemic response. 
    • April 1st  Arts for Illinois Relief Fund launched to support Illinois artists and non-profits
    • March 28th – EO suspending vehicle repossessions; EO extending cannabis application deadlines.
    • March 27th – EO suspending school testing, attendance requirements, expanding daycare access for essential employees. 
    • March 26th  EO suspending IDOC transfers; EO allowing remote witnessing and counterparty signatures
    • March 26th – Illinois COVID-19 Response Fund announced to assist non-profits, with $23M in initial commitments from individuals, corporations, and philanthropies.
    • March 26th – Federal government approves state major disaster declaration.
    • March 25th – Three programs totaling $94M to support small businesses announced
    • March 24th – Governor issues EO streamlining healthcare worker background checks 
    • March 23rd  Essential Equipment Task Force announced, which is a P3 (State, IMA, iBIO) to manufacture PPE and medical supplies.
    • March 23rd – State executes contracts to obtain 3.5 million masks and other PPE
    • March 21st  Stay-At-Home order takes effect at 5 P.M.
    • March 20th  Stay-At-Home order issued with exceptions. See details below.
    • March 19th – EO expanding telehealth access issued
    • March 18th – Governor Pritzker announces, a website to update the public about COVID-19, which will be updated daily. Local health department websites are likely to have more up to date information about number of cases.
    • March 17th – Governor Pritzker working with Illinois Sheriffs to prevent evictions. 
    • March 17th – Illinois utility companies have agreed not to shut off services at least in the Gubernatorial Disaster Proclamation. Many have agreed not to shut off service for even longer periods.
    • March 16th – Illinois Gaming Board announces suspension of all licensed video gaming operations, effective at 9 pm on March 16th through March 30th.
    • March 16th – Executive Order 2020 – 07 signed, suspending all on-premises consumption of food and beverages in businesses, prohibiting gatherings of 50 or more people, and allowing for public bodies to meet remotely.
    • March 15th – Executive Order 2020 – 06 signed, amending 2020 – 05 by exempting certain schools from closing educational services. 
    • March 13th – Executive Order 2020 – 05 signed, closing schools from March 17th through March 30th.
    • March 13th – Executive Order 2020 – 04 signed, to limit gatherings of 1,000 people or more.
    • March 12th – Executive Order 2020 – 03 signed, to extend the deadline for Cannabis Regulation and Tax Act applications from March 16th to March 30. 
    • March 11th – WHO characterized the COVID-19 outbreak as a pandemic.
    • Late 2019 – COVID-19 outbreak emerges.
  • Fri, March 15, 2019 1:28 PM | Judy Pfeiffer (Administrator)

    Good news!

    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

  • Thu, January 03, 2019 11:45 AM | Anonymous

    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:

    • The 8,947 homeowners who paid their taxes through a bank/mortgage escrow account are receiving refund checks
    • The 20,805 homeowners who paid by check or online are automatically receiving refunds to their bank or credit card accounts

    To see if you are entitled to a refund, visit and take these steps:

    • Select the purple box “Your Property Overview”
    • Enter your address or Property Index Number (PIN)

    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.

  • Tue, January 01, 2019 9:23 PM | Anonymous

    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)

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