Amendment to Chicago Fair Housing approved by Committee on Human Relations and new tenant right to claim retaliation

veteran status and fair housing ChicagoLaw expands protected class to veterans and adds right to retaliation claim for any fair housing proceeding

Yesterday, the Chicago City Council’s Committee on Human Relations approved an amendment to the Chicago Fair Housing and Human Rights Ordinance proposed by Mayor Emanuel making military status a protected class.  The intent of the amendment is to prohibit discrimination against members of the military in housing and employment.  The text of the original amendment as proposed can be found on the website of the City Clerk.  Based upon reports from the Chicago Sun Times, there were changes made to the original amendment before it was approved but those are not yet available online. Continue reading

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Landlord Trend: Government required tenant checks

EnglishflagForeign law may make its way to America

I want to alert landlords to a disturbing trend that has hit European landlords and could hop the pond.  Probably in response to refugees and/or immigrants, England passed, as part of its Immigration Act of 2014,  a law known as “right to rent“.  I know, my readers are already thinking – this must be a pro-tenant law.  Maybe a tenant’s bill of rights or something like that?  Nope.  Just the opposite.  Instead, English landlords are being required to perform what amount to immigration checks on their tenants.  Continue reading

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Thirty Day Notice for February

calWhen a tenant has an oral month to month lease or tenancy, the appropriate way to terminate it is via the service of a thirty day notice.  The notice is not well named.  One could mistakenly believe that the notice just sets forth that “thirty days from now, the tenant needs to vacate”.  It isn’t that easy.  The thirty day notice has to terminate on the last day of a tenancy period.  For calendar month tenancies, that means the last day of the month.  The notice needs to be served at least 30 days prior to that date.  So, for a month like January with 31 days, the notice needs to be in the tenant’s hands on or before January 1.  For a month like April with 30 days, the notice needs to be in the tenant’s hands on the last day of the prior month (ie. March 31).  Then we get to February which always throws us for a curve.  In a normal February, to get the requisite thirty days, the notice needs to be served on or before the 29th of January.  Because we have a leap year, landlords get an extra day – to terminate as of February 29, 2016, landlords can serve the notice as late as January 30, 2016.  Enjoy that extra day!

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No Cook County evictions in this cold weather!

mapThe repercussions of cold weather could be far reaching.

I don’t want to state the obvious, but landlords should keep in mind that the Cook County Sheriff is ordered by the Circuit Court of Cook County not to evict tenants when the outside weather is below 15 degrees Fahrenheit.  Continue reading

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Announcing our newest blog –

chiblogI know many of my readers come here looking for information about landlord-tenant related law.  Before you can be a landlord, you have to buy a property.  After you read this blog about landlording, you might want to sell your property!  That’s where we come in.  In addition to handling landlord-tenant related matters, we also represent residential and commercial real estate buyers and sellers throughout Chicagoland.  Over at, I will be discussing issues facing most buyers and sellers in the northern Illinois / Chicagoland area.  Come on over and take a peek.

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2016 Illinois Security Deposit Interest Rate Released

ilirState Rate Released

The IDFPR has issued a news release indicating the new security deposit interest rate for 2016 for those tenancies governed by the Illinois Security Deposit Interest Act.  The rate technically goes up from last year’s rate.  The IDFPR release reads as follows:

The Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation, Division of Banking announced today that the interest rate paid by the largest commercial bank with its main banking premises in Illinois on minimum deposit savings accounts as of December 31, 2015 was 0.045% with an Annual Percentage Yield (APY) of 0.05%

There appears to be some concern out there that the rate published by the state may not be correct.  Click here for a peek at their website as of 1-12-16, Some folks believe the rate to have not changed from last year.  Until the IDFPR publishes a revision, I would go with the published rate.  (after all, the difference on a $1000 security deposit would be 45 cents!).

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Update on 2016 Illinois security deposit interest rate & more

hotlineA few quick updates: First, the Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation has not yet posted the 2016 Security Deposit Interest Rate for tenancies governed by the Illinois Security Deposit Return Act on their website (update: the rate has been released).  I’ve scoured the website and can’t find it.  This is the first time in many years that the information was not readily available in the first few days of the new year.  I called the IDFPR hotline and spoke to someone in the banking department who had “never heard of” what I was asking but gave me an email address of someone who might.  More updates on this as I have them.

Next, I am pleased to note Continue reading

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2016 Security Deposit Interest rate for Chicago

2016sdiCity of Chicago interest rate to be paid on Security Deposits under CRLTO remains unchanged

The City of Chicago has released the new interest rate for 2016.  That rate, for security deposits under rental agreements governed by the Chicago Residential Landlord and Tenant Ordinance, is unchanged from 2015 and will be set 0.01%.   Continue reading

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2015-2016 Cook County winter eviction moratorium set

moratCook County sets annual holiday break from evictions

The Circuit Court of Cook County has determined by way of General Order 2015-04 that the winter eviction moratorium has been set for the time period from December 18, 2015 to January 4, 2016.  That means that the Cook County Sheriff will not enforce evictions during that time.  Eviction courtrooms will still be open, meaning that the line will just keep getting longer.  In addition, the Sheriff has been ordered not to evict tenants when the outdoor temperature is 15 degrees Fahrenheit or when extreme weather conditions endanger the people being evicted.  Anecdotal evidence suggests that evictions are taking between five to seven weeks from placement with the Sheriff (your mileage may vary!), so landlords should expect substantial delays, especially if the winter moves from mild to unfriendly.


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A time for change for the Chicago Residential Landlord Tenant Ordinance?

reformReforming the CRLTO?

Alderman Brendan Reilly from the 42nd ward in conjunction with the Chicago Association of Realtors has proposed an amendment to the CRLTO that would allow judicial discretion in awarding penalties to tenants in cases involving CRLTO violations.  Is this the time for reform of one of the most slanted pieces of legislation in Chicago?  Stay tuned for more updates on this one and landlords, call your aldermen!

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