COVID-19, also referred to as the coronavirus, is having a significant impact on our personal and professional lives here in Illinois and across the US. Now that the government has mandated that we should practice social distancing and avoid groups larger than 10 to help slow the spread of the virus, Illinois courts have issued some changes to help citizens heed these instructions. Below, we take a look at some of the changes that are affecting courthouses in our area.
Changes To DuPage County Courts
Effective earlier this week, Daniel P. Guerin, Chief Judge of DuPage County, issued an order that went into effect on March 17. The order stated that all pending cases in DuPage County Circuit Court will be rescheduled to after April 17, and that cases will be continued for 30 to 60 days after their originally scheduled court date. Each party involved in a pending case should be notified of a new expected court date. Additionally, all traffic courts in DuPage County are closed until after April 17. You or your lawyer will be notified of a new court date by the Clerk of the Circuit Court.
Bond hearings will proceed as normal, and if your case is set for a preliminary hearing or an arraignment, it will proceed as scheduled. Cases involving defendants in custody will move forward as planned. Other cases that will proceed normally include:
- DUI cases set for Statutory Summary Suspension Hearings
- Speciality Courts like Drug and Veterans Court
- Grand Jury proceedings
Changes To Cook County
Like the above judge, Timothy Evans, Chief Judge of the Circuit Court of Cook County, has issued an order that went into effect on March 17. In that order he states that all pending matters will be rescheduled for at least 30 days from the original court date. Judges will be available to hear emergency matters and plea agreements to resolve cases. Misdemeanor cases and traffic cases will be continued to the next key date assuming that date is at least 30 days from the original court date. Changes will be mailed to defendants.
Changes To Kane County
Clint Hull, Chief Judge of Kane County, issued an order that went into effect on March 17. It states that all cases will be postponed until after April 17. All cases will be rescheduled for at least 35 days from the original court date. Bond hearings will still take place, although they may be changed to Room 005 in the lower-level of the Kane County judicial Center in St. Charles.
Defendants who are in custody and facing felony charges who have a trial date will see their trial continue as originally planned. Plea agreements can also be arranged and resolved with a judge during this time. Other cases that will continue as scheduled in Kane County include:
- DUI cases set for Statutory Summary Suspension hearing.
- Cases involving domestic battery.
- Order of Protection Hearings
- Probation violation hearings
- Emergency motions
If you have any questions about how these changes or the current COVID-19 outbreak affects your Illinois criminal case, please reach out to Brett and the team at Appelman Law for more information.