Collecting Your Cook County (IL) Judgment: A Primer

8390885150_7973d44ed1_bBlood From A Turnip ( 3.9.16)

735 ILCS 5/2-1402 and Supreme Court Rule 277 govern post-judgment or supplementary proceedings in Illinois. 735 ILCS 5/12-101 through 12-183 provide additional post-judgment specifics like the mechanics of levying on a debtor’s property, the seven-year period to enforce a judgment (12-108), the lien on debtor’s real estate and personal property, enforcement in other counties, etc.

The Citation to Discover Assets

The first step is to issue a Citation to Discover Assets and Citation Notice.  The Citation and Notice of Citation are pre-printed fillable forms found on the Cook County website.

On the form, I list the name of the creditor (my client), the debtor (the person we got a judgment against), the date and amount of judgment and address of debtor.  I attach a copy of the underlying judgment and include a Rider to the Citation asking for documents relating to the debtor’s assets.

In the Rider, I usually ask for State and Federal tax returns for the past 2-3 years, a years’ worth of bank statements, six most recent paystubs, title papers to cars and real estate, and a signed statement of personal and real assets.  I may also request documents pertaining to any stocks, bonds, securities, furnishings or electronic equipment.  The larger the judgment, the more painstaking I am in my Citation Rider requests.

Section 2-1402(b-1) now requires a creditor to include an Income and Asset Form with the Citation. The debtor is supposed to fill out and bring it to the Citation hearing.  A sample Income and Asset Form is included in the statutory text.

To “issue” the Citation, I take it to the 6th floor (Muni cases) or 8th floor (Law Division) pay $80 (usually) and get it certified by the Clerk.  I am then given the “return date” which is the day it is set for hearing.

The Citation hearing will be in Room 1401 of the Daley Center (if judgment is less than $30K) or Room 2503 if the judgment is over $30K (or for judgments entered in Law Division cases).  Chancery money judgment citations are scheduled before the Chancery judge.

Serving the Citation

Once the Citation is issued, I either place it with the Sheriff or a Special Process Server (SPS).  A citation can be served in the first instance by a process server (unlike a complaint and summons – which must first be placed with the county sheriff).  I’ve found that an SPS is usually more persistent and able to track down evasive debtors with better success than the county sheriff. For this reason, I almost always serve a Citation through an SPS.

But with a corporate debtor that usually has a registered agent, I will usually serve through the sheriff (since there is less chance of dodging service).

The Citation Examination

The examination often takes place in the glamorous Daley Center hallway!  Sometimes, the judge will allow you to do the exam in a jury room.  I’ve also agreed to conduct examinations at my office or opposing counsel’s office.  However, to avoid the stonewalling debtor situation, I usually prefer to do the examination at the courthouse so I can ask the judge to intervene if necessary.

On the Citation return date, if the debtor shows up, he is sworn in by the Clerk and I conduct the examination.  I ask myself: “If this person owed me money, and I really wanted it, what would I ask this person?”  Simple as that.

I first ask if the debtor brought the requested Rider documents – such as their  tax returns, bank records, motor vehicle title, pay stubs, etc.  More often than not, the debtor brings  nothing and I have to continue the hearing for another date.  Even if the debtor shows up empty-handed, I still conduct the examination but in the continuance order, I specify which documents the debtor must produce within 7 or 14 days.  I then continue the citation hearing for 3-4 weeks.  I also reserve the right to re-examine the debtor if the documents he produces raises additional questions.

If the debtor or his/her counsel is uncooperative, threatening  or verbally abusive during the citation exam (I’ve experienced all three), I stop the exam and simply say “I’m going to have the case called”.  Usually, that results in some cooperation.  If not, and the debtor persists in not cooperating (giving “I don’t know” answers to every question) I let the judge scold the debtor for being obstructionist. In my experience, collection judges have little tolerance for a debtor that is not taking the citation proceeding seriously.

At the examination, three key questions I focus on before I look through the debtors’ documents are: (1) is he/she employed?; (2) Does he/she have bank accounts?; and (3) does the debtor own real estate?

(1) Employment: If the debtor answers yes to Item 1 (debtor has job) – I issue a wage deduction against the debtor’s employer.  You can have 15% of debtors’ gross, pre-tax wages under Illinois law under the Wage Deduction statute: 735 ILCS 5/12-801 et seq.

(2) Bank Account: If debtor has a bank account, I find out where and immediately issue and send a third-party citation to the bank’s Keeper of Records and serve it by certified mail.

Once the debtor’s bank receives the third-party citation, the bank must freeze the debtor’s account until further order of court.  I usually wait 2-3 days to send the debtor notice of the third-party citation.  Otherwise, if the debtor catches wind of the third-party citation, he/she can race to the bank, empty his/her accounts and you will get nothing (and NOT like it).

(2)(a) The Third-Party Citation

I have found a third-party citation to be a very  powerful enforcement tool.  People don’t like it when they can’t withdraw money from their account (individual) or make payroll (corporate debtor).

But, more often than not, the debtor’s bank account has little or no money in it.

Illinois law also has a $4,000 catch-all exemption: a debtor can declare up to $4,000 in his account as exempt (this is good information for someone representing a judgment debtor).

Example: debtor’s bank answers the third-party citation that the debtor has $4,050 in his/her checking account.  The debtor could declare $4,000 exempt and you (the creditor) would only get a paltry $50.  The burden is clearly on the debtor to claim this exemption.

The third-party citation will have a separate “return date”.  I try to schedule both the underlying “first party” citation (the one against the debtor) and third-party citation (against the debtor’s bank, e.g.) on the same day.

If the bank (or other third party respondent) files an answer stating that the debtor does have funds on deposit, I request a Turnover Order.  This is a court order which requires the bank/third-party to remit funds to the creditor’s counsel.

Once the turnover order issues, I send it to the bank/third-party with a letter saying “enclosed please find a copy of today’s order requiring you to turn over the sum of $____ within 7 days.  Please remit to the undersigned and make your check payable to_____”.  If the bank fails to pay (a rarity), I move to vacate the dismissal of the third-party citation and request that a conditional judgment enter against the bank. This almost always gets the bank’s attention since it doesn’t want to deal with a money judgment against it.

(3) Real Estate

If the debtor owns real estate, I record a Memorandum of Judgment against the property.

The Memorandum of Judgment must be signed by the judge that entered the underlying judgment (not the 1401 judge).  So, if a Muni judge entered it (on the 11th floor), you must have that judge sign the Memorandum.  If you forget at the time of judgment, simply file a motion requesting the judge to sign the Memorandum.

I attach a legal description to the Memorandum of Judgment along with the real estate PIN number.  Then, I record the Memorandum in the Recorder of Deeds.  For a Chicago-land debtor, I record in the Cook County Recorder of Deeds.  This puts a cloud on the debtor’s title.  The lien will interfere with the debtor’s attempts to refinance or sell his property.

If there is equity in the real estate, I can file suit to foreclose the lien and force a sale of debtor’s property.  But, before I do this, I run a title search – or at least check Cook County Assessor’s and Recorder of Deeds site to determine any prior recorded liens on the property.

A prior mortgage or other lien will trump my judgment lien and can make foreclosing the lien ( forcing a sale of the property) cost-prohibitive.

If the debtor answers that he has non-exempt personal property (e.g. car, jewelry, furniture, etc)., I explore whether the client wants to levy on the property.  Usually, it involves placing documents with the Sheriff and posting a bond.  This is where 735 ILCS 5/12-101-183 comes into play.  Levying on personalty can be time-consuming and expensive.

Other exemptions a debtor can assert in citation/supplementary proceedings are found at Section 2-1402(b)(1) and include unemployment benefits, Social Security benefits, worker’s comp benefits, $2,400 in car, $15,000 in home, $4,000 catch-all exemption among others.


There are many more details and nuances to collecting on a judgment.  But the above steps are a good starting point for a collection attorney trying to enforce a judgment for his client.  I can tell you this: when you are able to recover monies in citation proceedings through dogged efforts, clients are very appreciative which is very gratifying.

Published by


Litigation attorney representing businesses and individuals in business litigation, post-judgment enforcement, collections and real estate litigation.

782 thoughts on “Collecting Your Cook County (IL) Judgment: A Primer”

  1. Pingback: canadianpharmacy
  2. Pingback: drugs for sale
  3. Pingback: pharmacy
  4. Pingback: mazhor4sezon
  5. Pingback: filmfilmfilmes
  6. Pingback: gRh9UPV
  7. Pingback: pharmacy canada
  8. Pingback: canada drug
  9. Pingback:
  10. Pingback: buy viagra now
  11. Pingback: 9-05-2022
  12. Pingback:
  13. Pingback: TopGun2022
  14. Pingback: Xvideos
  15. Pingback: XVIDEOSCOM Videos
  16. Pingback: canadian pharmacy
  17. Pingback: ivanesva
  18. Pingback: madridbet
  19. Pingback: meritroyalbet
  20. Pingback: meritroyalbet
  21. Pingback: eurocasino
  22. Pingback: canada drugs
  23. Pingback: online pharmacy
  24. Pingback:
  25. Pingback: Netflix
  26. Pingback: meritroyalbet
  27. Pingback: FILM
  28. Pingback:
  29. Pingback: YA-krasneyu
  30. Pingback:
  31. Pingback:
  32. Pingback:
  33. Pingback:
  34. Pingback: projectio
  35. Pingback: psy online
  36. Pingback: Gz92uNNH
  37. Pingback: do-posle-psihologa
  38. Pingback: uels ukrain
  39. Pingback: online pharmacy
  40. Pingback: DPTPtNqS
  41. Pingback: qQ8KZZE6
  42. Pingback: D6tuzANh
  43. Pingback: SHKALA TONOV
  44. Pingback: chelovek-iz-90-h
  45. Pingback: canada drugs
  46. Pingback: 3Hk12Bl
  47. Pingback: 3NOZC44
  48. Pingback: 01211
  49. Pingback: tor-lyubov-i-grom
  50. Pingback: film-tor-2022
  51. Pingback: hd-tor-2022
  52. Pingback:
  53. Pingback: JXNhGmmt
  54. Pingback: Psikholog
  55. Pingback:
  56. Pingback: Link
  57. Pingback: 1domesticated
  58. Pingback: 1deserve
  59. Pingback: psy
  60. Pingback:
  61. Pingback: meritking
  62. Pingback:
  63. Pingback:
  64. Pingback: bucha killings
  65. Pingback: War in Ukraine
  66. Pingback: Ukraine
  67. Pingback: canada pharmacies
  68. Pingback: site
  69. Pingback: buy cialis pills
  70. Pingback: canada drug
  71. Pingback: stats
  72. Pingback: Ukraine-war
  73. Pingback: movies
  74. Pingback: gidonline
  75. Pingback:
  76. Pingback: web
  77. Pingback:
  78. Pingback: video
  79. Pingback:
  80. Pingback:
  81. Pingback: canadian drug
  82. Pingback: buy viagra 25mg
  83. Pingback: Northwest Pharmacy
  84. Pingback: northwestpharmacy
  85. Pingback:
  86. Pingback: pharmacy
  87. Pingback:
  88. Pingback: rodnoe-kino-ru
  89. Pingback: buy cialis uk
  90. Pingback: confeitofilm
  91. Pingback:
  92. Pingback: buy tadalafil
  93. Pingback: buy cialis
  94. Pingback: buy cialis
  95. Pingback: buy cialis
  96. Pingback:
  97. Pingback:
  98. Pingback: canadian drugstore
  99. Pingback: Dom drakona
  100. Pingback: JGXldbkj
  101. Pingback: aOuSjapt
  102. Pingback: buy viagra delhi
  103. Pingback: ìûøëåíèå
  104. Pingback: psikholog moskva
  105. Pingback: porno}
  106. Pingback: Dim Drakona 2022
  107. Pingback: TwnE4zl6
  108. Pingback: viagra canada
  109. Pingback: psy 3CtwvjS
  110. Pingback: lalochesia
  111. Pingback: buy viagra usa
  112. Pingback: buy viagra pills
  113. Pingback: film onlinee
  114. Pingback: canadian pharmacy
  115. Pingback: stromectol uk
  116. Pingback: 3qAIwwN
  117. Pingback: stromectol reviews
  118. Pingback: mgfmail
  119. Pingback: video-2
  120. Pingback:
  121. Pingback: canadianpharmacy
  122. Pingback: 000-1
  123. Pingback: 3SoTS32
  124. Pingback: 3DGofO7
  125. Pingback: canadian viagra
  126. Pingback: stromectol doses
  127. Pingback: online pharmacy
  128. Pingback: canada rx
  129. Pingback:
  130. Pingback: canadian cialis
  131. Pingback:
  132. Pingback: canadian drug
  133. Pingback: northwestpharmacy
  134. Pingback: logarkomx
  135. Pingback:
  136. Pingback:
  137. Pingback:
  138. Pingback: stromectol cvs
  139. Pingback: stromectol order
  140. Pingback: stromectol demodex
  141. Pingback:
  142. Pingback: stromectol buy
  143. Pingback: brutv
  144. Pingback: site 2023
  145. Pingback: canadian drug
  146. Pingback: pharmacy
  147. Pingback: drugstore online
  148. Pingback:
  149. Pingback:
  150. Pingback: online pharmacy
  151. Pingback: drugstore online
  152. Pingback: cialis from canada
  153. Pingback: canadian drugs
  154. Pingback: 1703
  155. Pingback:
  156. Pingback: canada drug
  157. Pingback:
  158. Pingback:
  159. Pingback:
  160. Pingback:
  161. Pingback: bep5w0Df
  162. Pingback: icf
  163. Pingback: 24hours-news
  164. Pingback: rusnewsweek
  165. Pingback: uluro-ado
  166. Pingback: canada drug
  167. Pingback: canada pharmacies
  168. Pingback:
  169. Pingback: klondayk2022
  170. Pingback: canadian drugstore
  171. Pingback: northwestpharmacy
  172. Pingback: 2022-film
  173. Pingback:
  174. Pingback: 2023
  175. Pingback: fuck google
  176. Pingback:
  177. Pingback:
  178. Pingback:
  179. Pingback: glee
  180. Pingback: xxx
  181. Pingback: ghaziabad escorts
  182. Pingback: xxx
  183. Pingback: mount abu escorts
  184. Pingback:
  185. Pingback: sitemap
  186. Pingback:
  187. Pingback:
  188. Pingback: LORD FILM
  189. Pingback: kin
  190. Pingback: kinnit
  191. Pingback: jz
  192. Pingback: nlp
  193. Pingback: time
  194. Pingback: rasshifrovka karti
  195. Pingback: konsultaciya
  196. Pingback: more
  197. Pingback: 9999
  198. Pingback: 7
  199. Pingback:
  200. Pingback: 777
  201. Pingback:
  202. Pingback:
  203. Pingback:
  204. Pingback: manipulyation
  205. Pingback: buying an essay
  206. Pingback: cheap essay
  207. Pingback: rx viagra
  208. Pingback: 354
  209. Pingback:
  210. Pingback: cialis 20 mg price
  211. Pingback: 150 mg viagra
  212. Pingback: new 2024
  213. Pingback: batman apollo
  214. Pingback: cheap viagra uk
  215. Pingback: cialis australia
  216. Pingback: film2024
  217. Pingback: mic bactrim
  218. Pingback: 123 Movies
  219. Pingback: dapril lisinopril
  220. Pingback: melas metformin
  221. Pingback: 40 ml semaglutide
  222. Pingback: 000
  223. Pingback: samorazvitiepsi
  224. Pingback: 911
  225. Pingback: Grandpashabet
  226. Pingback: Kumar siteleri
  227. Pingback: meritking
  228. Pingback: Radissonbet
  229. Pingback: hızlıbahis
  230. Pingback: list
  231. Pingback: a
  232. Pingback: child porn
  233. Pingback: child porn
  234. Pingback: porn
  235. Pingback: child porn
  236. Pingback: grandpashabet
  237. Pingback: porn
  238. Pingback: grandpashabet
  239. Pingback: grandpashabet
  240. Pingback: porno izle
  241. Pingback: child porn
  242. Pingback: grandpashabet
  243. Pingback: cratosroyalbet
  244. Pingback: effexor vs zoloft
  245. Pingback: children's aspirin
  246. Pingback: celecoxib 400 mg
  247. Pingback: child porn
  248. Pingback: acarbose uk
  249. Pingback: remeron and ativan
  250. Pingback: protonix ppi
  251. Pingback: child porn
  252. Pingback: porn
  253. Pingback: human design
  254. Pingback: child porn
  255. Pingback: child porn
  256. Pingback: child porn
  257. Pingback: sex historie
  258. Pingback: ivermectin tablets
  259. Pingback: buy tadalafil
  260. Pingback: ivermectin buy nz
  261. Pingback: stromectol oral
  262. Pingback: animal porn
  263. Pingback: ananın amı
  264. Pingback: porn
  265. Pingback: child porn
  266. Pingback: child porn
  267. Pingback: child porn
  268. Pingback: child porn

Leave a Reply