Illinois Supreme Court Amends Civil Procedural Rules


On April 20, 2023, the Illinois Supreme Court implemented changes to the following procedural rules affecting civil proceedings in trial courts. If a sub-section of a rule is omitted, it was not amended and remains effective in its current form. These amendments and new rules became effective on April 20, 2023:

[Amended] Rule 101. Summons and Original Process

(a) General. [Summary of changes: The amended rule now provides exemplar information that a summons shall “substantially” contain in common vernacular which basically consists of an overview as to what service of the summons means, i.e., that the person being served is being sued. The amendment also includes the specific information that should be provided in the summons, again in common vernacular, including, for example, what the person being served must do to participate in the case, how to fill out documents, how to e-file documents, and the possibility that the court may allow remote attendance for the first court date, etc.]

(b) Summons Requiring Appearance on Specified Day. [Summary of changes: The only amendment to this portion of the rule affects the specific date the person being served is to appear in court. The rule now makes it mandatory that the first possible appearance cannot be less than 40 days from the service date (increased from 21 days) and no later than 61 days from the service date (increased from 40 days). The court is also required to accommodate telephonic or video appearances for defendants, where reasonable]

[Amended] Rule 102. Service of Summons and Complaint; Return

(b) When Service Must Be Made. [Summary of changes: The amendment requires any summons served in an action for money not in excess of $50,000 or arbitration actions, to be served no later than 21 days (instead of three days) before the day for the appearance.

(d) Return. [Summary of changes: The amendment requires the person making service to file proof of service no later than 21 days (instead of three days) before the day of the appearance in an action for money not in excess of $50,000 or arbitration actions]

[New] Rule 102.1. Service of Summons and Orders in Protective Order Proceedings.

[Summary of changes: The Committee comments indicate that new Rule 102.1 is former Rule 3 without any changes to the substance of Rule 3. Essentially, the new rule is just a restructuring of the numeration of the rules with no substantive changes.]

[New] Rule 242. Use of Remote Jury Selection in Civil Cases.

[Summary of changes: This new rule allows for jury selection by video conference if the parties consent or the judge determines there to be “compelling circumstances” which require remote jury selection.]

[Amended] Rule 283. Form of Summons.

[Summary of changes: The amendment to this rule increases the specified date in the summons for appearing in court from 14 days to “not less than 40 days or more than 61 days” (increased from 40 days) after issuance of the summons.]

[Amended] Rule 284. Service by Certified or Registered Mail

(c) [Summary of changes: This rule pertains to service in small claims court. Sub-section (c) of this rule was amended to indicate that a certified return receipt shall “constitute proof of service” as long as it shows service at least 21 days (increased from three days) before the day for appearance.]