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Changes in the Cook County Domestic Relations Courts

The Cook County court recently took bold steps to modernize the Domestic Relations Division and improve the system for all families moving through the divorce, paternity and child support process. Consolidation of the divorce court and parentage court went into effect on February 6, 2017 and is the culmination of many years work by a task force convened by Presiding… Read more →

Cook County State’s Attorney Announces New Policy for Bond Recommendations

The Chicago Council of Lawyers (CCL) commends Cook County State’s Attorney Kimberly M. Foxx for taking a progressive step towards reducing Cook County’s money-based system of pretrial justice through the recently-announced expanded I-Bond policy. Working with Chicago Appleseed as part of the Criminal Justice Advisory Committee, CCL members and others are actively working toward safe and cost-effective alternatives to incarceration… Read more →

Illinois Takes Small First Step Toward Bail Reform

On June 9, 2017, Governor Rauner signed SB 2034 into law. SB 2034 covers two distinct areas of criminal law: the state RICO law and bail. First, effective immediately, it extends state RICO Act (“Illinois Street Gang And Racketeer Influenced And Corrupt Organizations Law”) for an additional 5 years.[1] Secondly and most importantly, it implements several changes to Illinois bail… Read more →

New NJDC Report Documents States’ Failure to Protect Children’s Right to Counsel

The National Juvenile Defender Center (“NJDC”) has issued new report that examines a serious failure in our justice system: the systematic denial of children’s constitutional right to a public defense. As NJDC’s troubling new report, Access Denied, documents, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled fifty years ago in In re Gault that children have a right to “the guiding hand of… Read more →

Immigration Court Access

On April 5, 2017, Steven Schulman, Pro Bono Partner at Akin Gump and principal author of the Appleseed Immigration Court Practice Guide, led a training for attorneys on overcoming obstacles in immigration court. The event was hosted by Latham & Watkins, sponsored by Chicago Appleseed, and co-sponsored by the Chicago Council of Lawyers. Video of the event is now available at YouTube. We’re… Read more →

The Race for Clerk of the Court

The Primary Election in Illinois is March 15th, and early voting is happening now. The Chicago Council of Lawyers wants voters to focus on electing the most qualified judges possible, but there are other races that affect our courts, as well. To provide more information about the race for the Cook County Circuit Court Clerk, we asked the three Democratic… Read more →

Chicago Council of Lawyers Releases Judicial Evaluations for the March 15, 2016 Primary Election

The Chicago Council of Lawyers has released its judicial evaluations for the March 15, 2016 Primary Election.  You can view or download the Judicial Evaluation Report in alphabetical order, the Judicial Evaluation Report in ballot order, or a summary sample ballot from the Committee to Elect Qualified Judges, using the judicial evaluations of the Chicago Council of Lawyers. The integrity and independence of… Read more →

Rejoin the Council & Support the Collaboration for Justice

Has your membership in the Chicago Council of Lawyers lapsed? Now is the perfect time to renew and join in the Collaboration for Justice with the Chicago Appleseed Fund for Justice. In 2015, CCL members, working with Chicago Appleseed staff, with pro bono council from law firms like Latham & Watkins and DLA Piper and with court staff, accomplished a lot.… Read more →

Matching Contribution Opportunity for the Collaboration for Justice

We are excited to announce that an anonymous donor has offered to match every contribution made to Chicago Appleseed and the Chicago Council of Lawyers – the Collaboration for Justice  — between October 1 and December 31, 2014, up to $40,000. Please help us maximize this match with a donation before December 31st. We appreciate your support of our work… Read more →