(705 ILCS 105/27.3f)
Guardianship and advocacy operations fee.
(a) As used in this Section, "guardianship and advocacy" means the guardianship and advocacy services provided by the Guardianship and Advocacy Commission and defined in the Guardianship and Advocacy Act. Viable public guardianship and advocacy programs, including the public guardianship programs created and supervised in probate proceedings in the Illinois courts, are essential to the administration of justice and ensure that incapacitated persons and their estates are protected. To defray the expense of maintaining and operating the divisions and programs of the Guardianship and Advocacy Commission and to support viable guardianship and advocacy programs throughout Illinois, each circuit court clerk shall charge and collect a fee on all matters filed in probate cases in accordance with this Section, but no fees shall be assessed against the State Guardian, any State agency under the jurisdiction of the Governor, any public guardian, or any State's Attorney.
(b) No fee specified in this Section shall be imposed in any minor guardianship established under Article XI of the Probate Act of 1975, or against an indigent person. An indigent person shall include any person who meets one or more of the following criteria:
(1) He or she is receiving assistance under one or
more of the following public benefits programs: Supplemental Security Income (SSI), Aid to the Aged, Blind, and Disabled (AABD), Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF), Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) (formerly Food Stamps), General Assistance, State Transitional Assistance, or State Children and Family Assistance.
(2) His or her available income is 125% or less of
the current poverty level as established by the United States Department of Health and Human Services, unless the applicant's assets that are not exempt under Part 9 or 10 of Article XII of the Code of Civil Procedure are of a nature and value that the court determines that the applicant is able to pay the fees, costs, and charges.
(3) He or she is, in the discretion of the court,
unable to proceed in an action without payment of fees, costs, and charges and whose payment of those fees, costs, and charges would result in substantial hardship to the person or his or her family.
(4) He or she is an indigent person pursuant to
Section 5-105.5 of the Code of Civil Procedure, providing that an "indigent person" means a person whose income is 125% or less of the current official federal poverty guidelines or who is otherwise eligible to receive civil legal services under the Legal Services Corporation Act of 1974.
(c) The clerk is entitled to receive the fee specified in this Section, which shall be paid in advance, and managed by the clerk as set out in paragraph (2), except that, for good cause shown, the court may suspend, reduce, or release the costs payable under this Section:
(1) For administration of the estate of a decedent
(whether testate or intestate) or of a missing person, a fee of $100.
(2) The guardianship and advocacy operations fee, as
outlined in this Section, shall be in addition to all other fees and charges and assessable as costs. Five percent of the fee shall be retained by the clerk for deposit into the Circuit Court Clerk Operation and Administrative Fund to defray costs of collection and 95% of the fee shall be disbursed within 60 days after receipt by the circuit clerk to the State Treasurer for deposit by the State Treasurer into the Guardianship and Advocacy Fund.
(Source: P.A. 97-1093, eff. 1-1-13.)