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Illinois Compiled Statutes

Information maintained by the Legislative Reference Bureau
Updating the database of the Illinois Compiled Statutes (ILCS) is an ongoing process. Recent laws may not yet be included in the ILCS database, but they are found on this site as Public Acts soon after they become law. For information concerning the relationship between statutes and Public Acts, refer to the Guide.

Because the statute database is maintained primarily for legislative drafting purposes, statutory changes are sometimes included in the statute database before they take effect. If the source note at the end of a Section of the statutes includes a Public Act that has not yet taken effect, the version of the law that is currently in effect may have already been removed from the database and you should refer to that Public Act to see the changes made to the current law.

(755 ILCS 20/) Escheats Act.

755 ILCS 20/0.01

    (755 ILCS 20/0.01) (from Ch. 49, par. 0.01)
    Sec. 0.01. Short title. This Act may be cited as the Escheats Act.
(Source: P.A. 86-1324.)

755 ILCS 20/1

    (755 ILCS 20/1) (from Ch. 49, par. 1)
    Sec. 1. If any person dies owning any real or personal estate without any legacy, and leaving no known heirs or representatives capable of inheriting the same, or the legatees thereof are incapable of holding the same, and in all cases when there is no owner of real estate capable of holding the same, such real and personal estate shall escheat as provided in the Probate Act of 1975, as amended.
(Source: P.A. 83-388.)

755 ILCS 20/2

    (755 ILCS 20/2) (from Ch. 49, par. 2)
    Sec. 2. In case the estate consists of personal property, letters of office shall be granted thereon, as in other cases, and the same shall be administered in conformity with the probate laws of this State. Should there be any balance left in the possession of the administrator after the payment of debts and costs of administration, the administrator shall report the same to the circuit court, with a statement of all the facts within his knowledge as to the heirship of the decedent, which facts shall constitute a part of his report, and be filed in the court; and the court shall enter an order directing the administrator to pay over the balance found in his possession to the county treasurer of the county, taking his receipt therefor, which receipt shall be filed with the county clerk and entered of record, and shall be a good and sufficient voucher to the administrator. The county clerk shall also charge the amount to the county treasurer as an escheat fund, specially designating from whose estate the same was derived.
(Source: P.A. 83-388.)

755 ILCS 20/3

    (755 ILCS 20/3) (from Ch. 49, par. 3)
    Sec. 3. When the State's Attorney of the county is informed or has reason to believe that any real estate within the county has escheated to the county by reason that any person owning the real estate has died without bequeathing the same, and leaving no heir capable of inheriting the same, or by reason of the incapacity of the legatee to hold the same, and such estate has not been sold according to law within 5 years after the death of the last owner, for the payments of the debts of the deceased, or if the State's Attorney is informed, or has cause to believe that any such estate within the county has otherwise escheated to the county, it shall be the duty of the State's Attorney to file a complaint in behalf of the county in the circuit court of the county, setting forth a description of the estate, the name of the last lawful owner thereof, the names of the parties in possession, and persons claiming such estate, if known, and the fact and circumstances in consequence of which such estate is claimed to have escheated, and alleging that by reason thereof the county has a right by law to such estate. The court shall enter an order against such persons, bodies politic or corporate, as alleged in the complaint, to hold, possess or claim such estate, requiring them to appear at the court on a designated return day, not less than 60 nor more than 90 days after the date thereof, and show cause why such estate should not be vested in the county. A certified copy of the order shall be served at least 10 days before the return day thereof. The court shall set forth in the order briefly the contents of the complaint, and require all persons interested in the estate to appear at the court on the return day so designated and show cause, if any, why the same should not be vested in the county; and the order shall be published for 6 weeks successively in some newspaper printed and published in the county, if any is there published; and if no newspaper is printed in the county, then the notice shall be published in some newspaper in the adjoining county thereto, the last insertion to be at least 2 weeks before the return day on which the parties are required to appear.
(Source: P.A. 83-359.)

755 ILCS 20/4

    (755 ILCS 20/4) (from Ch. 49, par. 4)
    Sec. 4. All persons, bodies, politic and corporate, named in such complaint as having possession rights or claimants of the estate, may appear and plead to such proceedings, and may deny the facts stated in the complaint, and the title of the county to the lands and tenements therein mentioned, at any time on or before the third day after the return day of the order, and any other person claiming an interest in such estate may appear and be made a defendant and plead to the complaint, by motion or by answer, within the time allowed for pleading; and if no person appears and pleads, or appearing, refuses to plead within the time, then judgment shall be entered vesting title in the county to the lands and tenements in such complaint claimed; but if any person appears and denies the title set up by the county, or denies any material facts in the complaint, an issue or issues shall be made up and tried as other issue of facts, and a survey may be ordered and entered as in other actions where the title or boundary of lands is drawn in question; and if, after the issues are tried, it appears from facts found or admitted that the county has good title to the lands and tenements in the complaint mentioned, or any part thereof, judgment shall be entered vesting title thereof in the county, and the county shall recover costs of the action against the defendant or defendants.
(Source: P.A. 83-359.)

755 ILCS 20/5

    (755 ILCS 20/5) (from Ch. 49, par. 5)
    Sec. 5. When judgment is entered vesting title in the county to any land, tenements or hereditaments, such judgment shall contain a certain description of such estate, and shall be effectual for vesting the title in the county; and an order shall be entered directed to the sheriff of the county, commanding the sheriff to seize and take the lands, tenements and hereditaments so vested in the county into the sheriff's possession; and upon the return of such order of seizure, the State's Attorney shall cause the record and process to be exemplified under the seal of the court, and cause the same to be recorded in the office of the recorder of the county; and such judgment shall preclude all parties and persons thereto, their heirs and assigns, so long as such judgment shall remain in force.
(Source: P.A. 83-1362.)

755 ILCS 20/6

    (755 ILCS 20/6) (from Ch. 49, par. 6)
    Sec. 6. Any party who has filed an appearance in the proceeding and the State's Attorney, on behalf of the county, may appeal in the same manner as parties in other civil cases.
(Source: P.A. 83-359.)

755 ILCS 20/7

    (755 ILCS 20/7) (from Ch. 49, par. 7)
    Sec. 7. The county treasurer shall keep just and true accounts of all moneys paid into the treasury, and if any person appears within 10 years after the death of the intestate and claims any money paid into the treasury as his or hers, on legal representation such person may file a petition in the circuit court of such county, stating the nature of the claim and praying such money may be paid to the claimant. A copy of such petition shall be served upon the State's Attorney of such county, who shall file an answer to the same, and the court shall thereupon examine the claim and the allegations and proofs, and if it finds that such person is entitled to any money paid into the county treasury, the court shall by order direct the county clerk to issue an order upon the county treasurer for the payment of the money, but without interest or costs. It is the duty of county boards to see that such amounts are paid in full without discount. A copy of the order of the court shall be a sufficient voucher for drawing such order. If any person appears and claims any lands vested in the county above stated, within 5 years after the judgment was entered, such person (other than such as were served with a copy of the order entered pursuant to Section 3 of this Act or filed an appearance in the proceeding, their heirs or assigns), may file a petition in the circuit court of the county in which the lands claimed lie, setting forth the nature of the claim and praying that the lands be relinquished to the petitioner. A copy of such petition shall be served on the State's Attorney of the county, who shall file an answer. The court shall thereupon examine the claim and the allegations and proofs, and if it appears that such person is entitled to the lands claimed, the court shall enter an order accordingly, which shall be effectual for divesting the interest of the county in or to the lands, but no costs shall be adjudged against the county. All persons who fail to appear and file their petitions within the times limited, herein, shall be forever barred, saving, however, to minors and persons under legal disability the right to appear and file their petition as hereinabove set out, at any time within 5 years after their respective disabilities are removed. However, the county board of such county may cause such lands to be sold at any time after seizure, in which case the claimant shall be entitled to the proceeds of such sale in lieu of the lands, upon obtaining a judgment or order as hereinabove set out.
    All persons beyond the limits of the United States, as to whom a right to petition under this Section is otherwise barred by this amendatory Act of 1961 or will be barred within one year after the effective date of this amendatory Act of 1961, may file a petition pursuant to this Section at any time within 2 years after such effective date.
(Source: P.A. 83-1362.)