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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.

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(775 ILCS 5/) Illinois Human Rights Act.

775 ILCS 5/Art. 8B

    (775 ILCS 5/Art. 8B heading)

775 ILCS 5/8B-101

    (775 ILCS 5/8B-101) (from Ch. 68, par. 8B-101)
    Sec. 8B-101. Applicability. The procedures and relief specified in this Article shall apply solely to complaints filed with the Human Rights Commission under Article 3 and Section 6-101.5 of Article 6.
(Source: P.A. 102-362, eff. 1-1-22.)

775 ILCS 5/8B-102

    (775 ILCS 5/8B-102) (from Ch. 68, par. 8B-102)
    Sec. 8B-102. Hearing on complaint.
    (A) Election of Judicial Determination. When a complaint is filed under Section 7B-102(F) a complainant, a respondent, or an aggrieved party on whose behalf the complaint was filed, may elect to have the claims asserted in that complaint decided in a civil action in a circuit court of Illinois, in which case the Illinois Code of Civil Procedure shall apply. The election must be made not later than 20 days after the receipt by the electing person of service of the complaint by the Commission. The person making such election shall file it with the Commission and shall give notice of doing so to the Department and to all other complainants and respondents to whom the charge relates. If an election is made, the Commission shall act no further on the complaint and shall administratively close the file on the complaint. If an election is not made, the Commission shall continue proceedings on the complaint in accordance with this Act and the hearing shall be before a hearing officer.
    (B) Services. Within 5 days after a complaint is filed by the Department, the Commission shall cause it to be served on the respondent and complainant together with a notice of hearing before a hearing officer of the Commission at a place therein fixed and with information as to how to make an election under subsection (A) and the effect of such an election.
    (C) Time and Location of Hearing. An initial hearing date shall be scheduled for not less than 30 nor more than 90 days after service of the complaint at a place that is within 100 miles of the place at which the civil rights violation is alleged to have occurred. The hearing officer may, for good cause shown, extend the date of the hearing.
    (D) Amendment.
        (1) A complaint may be amended under oath by leave of
the presiding hearing officer, for good cause shown, upon timely written motion and reasonable notice to all interested parties at any time prior to the issuance of a recommended order pursuant to Section 8A-102(I) or 8B-102(J). The amended complaint shall be served upon all parties of record by the Department within 7 days of the date of the order permitting its filing or such additional time as the hearing officer may order. Amendments to the complaint may encompass any unlawful discrimination which is like or reasonably related to the charge and growing out of the allegations in such charge, including, but not limited to, allegations of retaliation.
        (2) A motion that the complaint be amended to conform
to the evidence, made prior to the close of the public hearing, may be addressed orally on the record to the hearing officer, and shall be granted for good and sufficient cause.
    (E) Answer.
        (1) The respondent shall file an answer under oath or
affirmation to the original or amended complaint within 30 days of the date of service thereof, but the hearing officer may, for good cause shown, grant further time for the filing of an answer.
        (2) When the respondent files a motion to dismiss the
complaint within 30 days and the motion is denied by the hearing officer, the time for filing the answer shall be within 15 days of the date of denial of the motion.
        (3) Any allegation in the complaint which is not
denied or admitted in the answer is deemed admitted unless the respondent states in the answer that he is without sufficient knowledge or information to form a belief with respect to such allegation.
        (4) The failure to file an answer is deemed to
constitute an admission of the allegations contained in the complaint.
        (5) The respondent has the right to amend his answer,
upon leave of the hearing officer, for good cause shown.
    (F) Proceedings In Forma Pauperis.
        (1) If the hearing officer is satisfied that the
complainant or respondent is a poor person, and unable to prosecute or defend the complaint and pay the costs and expenses thereof, the hearing officer may permit the party to commence and prosecute or defend the action as a poor person. Such party shall have all the necessary subpoenas, appearances, and proceedings without prepayment of witness fees or charges. Witnesses shall attend as in other cases under this Act and the same remedies shall be available for failure or refusal to obey the subpoena as are provided for in Section 8-104 of this Act.
        (2) A person desiring to proceed without payment of
fees or charges shall file with the hearing officer an affidavit stating that he is a poor person and unable to pay costs, and that the action is meritorious.
    (G) Discovery. The procedures for obtaining discovery of information from parties and witnesses shall be specified by the Commission in rules. If no rule has been promulgated by the Commission on a particular type of discovery, the Code of Civil Procedure may be considered persuasive authority. The types of discovery shall be the same as in civil cases in the circuit courts of this State, provided, however, that a party may take discovery depositions only upon leave of the hearing officer and for good cause shown.
    (H) Hearing.
        (1) The Department and the respondent shall be
parties in hearings under this Article. The Department shall seek appropriate relief for the complainant and vindication of the public interest. Any complainant may intervene as a party. All parties have the right to examine and cross examine witnesses.
        (2) The testimony taken at the hearing shall be under
oath or affirmation and a transcript shall be made and filed in the office of the Commission.
        (3) The testimony taken at the hearing is subject to
the same rules of evidence that apply in courts of this State in civil cases.
    (I) Compelling Appearance of Parties at Hearing. The appearance at the hearing of a party or a person who at the time of the hearing is an officer, director, or employee of a party may be required by serving the party with a notice designating the person who is required to appear. The notice also may require the production at the hearing of documents or tangible things. If the party or person is a nonresident of the county, the hearing officer may order any terms and conditions in connection with his appearance at the hearing that are just, including payment of his reasonable expenses. Upon a failure to comply with the notice, the hearing officer may enter any order that is just.
    (J) Decision.
        (1) When all the testimony has been taken, the
hearing officer shall determine whether the respondent has engaged in or is engaging in the civil rights violation with respect to the aggrieved party as charged in the complaint. A determination sustaining a complaint shall be based upon a preponderance of the evidence.
        (2) The hearing officer shall make findings of fact
in writing and, if the finding is against the respondent, shall issue and cause to be served on the parties and the Department a recommended order for appropriate relief as provided by this Act.
        (3) If, upon all the evidence, the hearing officer
finds that a respondent has not engaged in the civil rights violation charged in the complaint or that a preponderance of the evidence does not sustain the complaint, he shall state his findings of fact and shall issue and cause to be served on the parties and the Department a recommended order dismissing the complaint.
        (4) The findings and recommended order of the hearing
officer shall be filed with the Commission. The findings and recommended order may be authored by a hearing officer other than the hearing officer who presides at the public hearing if:
            (a) the hearing officer who presides at the
public hearing is unable to author the findings and recommended order by reason of death, disability, or separation from employment; and
            (b) all parties to a complaint file a joint
motion agreeing to have the findings and recommended order written by a hearing officer who did not preside at the public hearing.
        (5) The hearing officer may issue a recommended order
of dismissal with prejudice or a recommended order of default as a sanction for the failure of a party to prosecute his or her case, file a required pleading, appear at a hearing, or otherwise comply with this Act, the rules of the Commission, or a previous order of the hearing officer.
    (K) Effect of Trial of Civil Action on Administrative Proceedings. A hearing officer shall not proceed with any administrative proceedings under this Section after the filing of a civil action by or on behalf of the aggrieved party under federal or State law seeking relief with respect to the alleged civil rights violation.
(Source: P.A. 92-472, eff. 1-1-02.)

775 ILCS 5/8B-103

    (775 ILCS 5/8B-103) (from Ch. 68, par. 8B-103)
    Sec. 8B-103. Review by Commission.
    (A) Exceptions. Within 30 days of the receipt of service of the hearing officer's recommended order, a party may file with the Commission any written exceptions to any part of the order. Exceptions shall be supported by argument and served on all parties at the time they are filed. If no exceptions are filed, the recommended order shall become the order of the Commission without further review. The Commission shall issue a notice that no exceptions have been filed no later than 30 days after the exceptions were due.
    (B) Response. Within 21 days of the receipt of service of exceptions, a party may file with the Commission any response to the exceptions. Responses shall be supported by argument and served on all parties at the time they are filed.
    (C) Oral Argument. A party may request oral argument at the time of filing exceptions or a response to exceptions. When any party requests oral argument in this manner, the Commission may schedule oral argument to be heard by a panel of 3 Commission members. If the panel grants oral argument, it shall notify all parties of the time and place of argument. Any party so notified may present oral argument.
    (D) Remand.
        (1) The Commission, on its own motion or at the
written request of any party made at the time of filing exceptions or responses, may remand a case to a hearing officer for purposes of a rehearing to reconsider evidence or hear additional evidence in the matter. The Commission shall issue and serve on all parties a written order remanding the cause and specifying the additional evidence.
        (2) The hearing officer presiding at a rehearing
shall set a hearing date, in accordance with Section 8B-102(C), upon due notice to all parties.
        (3) After conclusion of the rehearing, the hearing
officer shall file written findings and recommendations with the Commission and serve copies at the same time on all parties in the same manner as provided in Section 8B-102(J). The findings and recommendations shall be subject to review by the Commission as provided in this Section.
    (E) Review.
        (1) Following the filing of the findings and
recommended order of the hearing officer and any written exceptions and responses, and any other proceedings provided for in this Section, the Commission, through a panel of 3 members, may review the record and may adopt, modify, or reverse in whole or in part the findings and recommendations of the hearing officer.
        (2) When reviewing a recommended order, the
Commission shall adopt the hearing officer's findings of fact if they are not contrary to the manifest weight of the evidence.
        (3) If the Commission accepts a case for review, it
shall file its written order and decision in its office and serve copies on all parties together with a notification of the date when it was filed. If the Commission declines to review a recommended order or if no exceptions have been filed, it shall issue a short statement notifying the parties that the recommended order has become the order of the Commission. The statement shall be served on the parties by first class mail.
        (3.1) A recommended order authored by a non-presiding
hearing officer under subparagraph 8B-102(J)(4) shall be reviewed in the same manner as a recommended order authored by a presiding hearing officer.
        (4) The Commission shall issue a final decision
within one year of the date a charge is filed with the Department unless it is impracticable to do so. If the Commission is unable to issue a final decision within one year of the date the charge is filed with the Department, it shall notify all parties in writing of the reasons for not doing so.
    (F) Rehearing.
        (1) Within 30 days after service of the Commission's
order or statement declining review, a party may file an application for rehearing before the full Commission. The application shall be served on all other parties. The Commission shall have discretion to order a response to the application. The filing of an application for rehearing is optional. The failure to file an application for rehearing shall not be considered a failure to exhaust administrative remedies. This amendatory Act of 1991 applies to pending proceedings as well as those filed on or after its effective date.
        (2) Applications for rehearing shall be viewed with
disfavor, and may be granted, by vote of 3 Commission members, only upon a clear demonstration that a matter raises legal issues of significant impact or that Commission decisions are in conflict.
        (3) When an application for rehearing is granted, the
original order shall be nullified and oral argument before the full Commission shall be scheduled. The Commission may request the parties to file any additional written arguments it deems necessary.
    (G) Modification of Order.
        (1) At any time before a final order of the court in
a proceeding for judicial review under this Act, the Commission or the 3-member panel that decided the matter, upon reasonable notice, may modify or set aside in whole or in part any finding or order made by it in accordance with this Section.
        (2) Any modification shall be accomplished by the
filing and service of a supplemental order and decision by the Commission in the same manner as provided in this Section.
    (H) Extensions of time. All motions for extensions of time with respect to matters being considered by the Commission shall be decided by the full Commission or a 3-member panel. If a motion for extension of time cannot be ruled upon before the filing deadline sought to be extended, the Chairperson of the Commission shall be authorized to extend the filing deadline to the date of the next Commission meeting at which the motion can be considered.
(Source: P.A. 100-1066, eff. 8-24-18; 100-1154, eff. 12-19-18.)

775 ILCS 5/8B-104

    (775 ILCS 5/8B-104) (from Ch. 68, par. 8B-104)
    Sec. 8B-104. Relief; penalties. Upon finding a civil rights violation, a hearing officer may recommend and the Commission or any three-member panel thereof may provide for any relief or penalty identified in this Section, separately or in combination, by entering an order directing the respondent to:
        (A) Cease and Desist Order. Cease and desist from
any violation of this Act.
        (B) Actual Damages. Pay actual damages, as
reasonably determined by the Commission, for injury or loss suffered by the complainant.
        (C) Civil Penalty. Pay a civil penalty to vindicate
the public interest:
            (i) in an amount not exceeding $16,000 if the
respondent has not been adjudged to have committed any prior civil rights violation under Article 3;
            (ii) in an amount not exceeding $42,500 if the
respondent has been adjudged to have committed one other civil rights violation under Article 3 during the 5-year period ending on the date of the filing of this charge; and
            (iii) in an amount not exceeding $70,000 if the
respondent has been adjudged to have committed 2 or more civil rights violations under Article 3 during the 7-year period ending on the date of the filing of this charge; except that if the acts constituting the civil rights violation that is the object of the charge are committed by the same natural person who has been previously adjudged to have committed acts constituting a civil rights violation under Article 3, then the civil penalties set forth in subparagraphs (ii) and (iii) may be imposed without regard to the period of time within which any subsequent civil rights violation under Article 3 occurred.
        (D) Attorney Fees; Costs. Pay to the complainant all
or a portion of the costs of maintaining the action, including reasonable attorneys fees and expert witness fees incurred in maintaining this action before the Department, the Commission and in any judicial review and judicial enforcement proceedings.
        (E) Compliance Report. Report as to the manner of
        (F) Posting of Notices. Post notices in a
conspicuous place which the Commission may publish or cause to be published setting forth requirements for compliance with this Act or other relevant information which the Commission determines necessary to explain this Act.
        (G) Make Complainant Whole. Take such action as may
be necessary to make the individual complainant whole, including, but not limited to, awards of interest on the complainant's actual damages from the date of the civil rights violation.
(Source: P.A. 99-548, eff. 1-1-17.)