Illinois introduces eviction right to counsel bills

02/17/2023, Legislation, Housing - Evictions

In 2023, the Illinois legislature introduced a few different bills related to the right to counsel in evictions. 


HB 1444 / HB 2315 would require the court to appoint counsel for indigent tenants facing eviction. "Indigent" is defined under the statute as "any person who, at any stage of a court proceeding: (1) receives public assistance; (2) has been involuntarily committed to a public mental health facility; (3) has an income of 125% or less of the current federally established poverty line; or (4) has insufficient funds to retain counsel." The Supreme Court Access to Justice (A2J) Commission would be responsible for implementing the right to counsel program.

HB 3709 would create a right to counsel program for tenants to be phased in, as well as a landlord registry, tenant bill of rights, and other measures aimed at addressing the shortage of safe and affordable housing.