Start My Answer

Illinois Court Case Search — Find Your Lawsuit

Dena Standley | July 26, 2023

Dena Standley
Legal Expert, Paralegal
Dena Standley, BA

Dena Standley is a seasoned paralegal with more than 20 years of experience in legal research and writing, having received a certification as a Legal Assistant/Paralegal from Southern Technical College.

Edited by Hannah Locklear

Hannah Locklear
Editor at SoloSuit
Hannah Locklear, BA

Hannah Locklear is SoloSuit’s Marketing and Impact Manager. With an educational background in Linguistics, Spanish, and International Development from Brigham Young University, Hannah has also worked as a legal support specialist for several years.

Summary: Illinois makes it relatively easy to find and access your court records if you’re being sued by a debt collector. You can find your Illinois court case at the courthouse or online. Once you access your records online, visit SoloSuit to learn more about how to win a case against a debt collection agency.

Finding your case records in Illinois is relatively easy, thanks to the meticulous methods the state applies to ensure the documents are accessible to its citizens. Citizens can access their case information online via the Illinois portal search tool called re: SearchIL. Some counties, found in the list below, have individual portals to access court case records. You can also visit the courthouse where the case was filed.

Once debt collectors take you to court, you need to follow up on the case to ensure they do not submit inaccurate debt information or get a judgment in their favor without your knowledge. This article will help you understand the court structure in Illinois and how you can access your case records.

Sued for debt in Illinois? Use SoloSettle to settle your debts for good.

Settle with SoloSettle

Make an Offer

Illinois court structure

Knowing the Illinois judicial system will help you know which court will hear your case and where your case will be transferred if you disagree with the lower court's judgment and choose to appeal the case outcome. Since debt collection lawsuits are considered civil cases, we will focus on Illinois’ civil court structure in this section.

The Illinois judicial system consists of one Supreme Court, five Courts of Appeal, and twenty-three Circuit Courts. Each of these courts handle civil cases at different levels. Let's look at them in detail.

  • Supreme Court: Located in Springfield, this court is the highest in Illinois. It has original jurisdiction and hears appeals from the lower courts. The court also is the overall authority of the justice system and sets the rules for all courts.

  • Court of Appeals: These courts are divided into five districts and hear appeals from Circuit Courts in their jurisdiction. Each district covers several counties. The five appellate courts are in Chicago, Elgin, Ottawa, Springfield, and Mount Vernon.

  • Circuit Courts: In Illinois, the circuit court is considered the court of original jurisdiction. They hear small claims cases of up to $10,000 and regular civil cases with no monetary limit. There are 24 judicial circuits having jurisdiction over several countries, apart from six that have a single county circuit.

The graphic below further illustrates the Illinois court structure:

IL court structure

Your debt collection case will be heard in the Circuit Court, often in the small claims division, depending on the amount of money in question. The small claims division has simplified rules that help citizens settle monetary disputes without the lengthy legal process. Illinois allows you to represent yourself, but you have to pay filing fees.

You’re probably thinking you need to hire an attorney to represent you in your debt collection case. Finding a lawyer can be stressful and expensive. Save yourself the anxiety and money by representing yourself with SoloSuit’s help.

Check out this video to learn more about how to respond to a debt collection lawsuit in Illinois:

How to find your case number in Illinois

The court clerk assigns every debt lawsuit a case number. This helps to keep records organized and enables easy accessibility. The case number is created using the year the lawsuit was filed, the case type or court, and the sequential number of cases in that year.

For example, case number 2022-SC-000001 is the first small claims case filed in 2022.

To get your case number, make an official in-person request to the courthouse that will hear your case. Use this link to find your county’s court location. Some counties have an online portal (find the list below) where you can search using other details such as party name, filing date, and case type. The case details will appear together with the case number. If your county does not have a specific link, use re:SearchIL.

How to access your court records in Illinois

Illinois allows citizens to access their case records once they know which courthouse their case was filed. The court clerk is in charge of these records and will grant you access in the following two ways:

  1. Access your court case records in-person.
  2. Access your court case records online.

Now, let’s take a closer look at each of these options.

1. Access your Illinois court case records in-person

If you choose to access your case documents in person, you have to visit the courthouse and make a written request to the court clerk. Give the clerk the following relevant information to make the process easier and faster:

  • Case number
  • Court the case was filed
  • Filing date
  • Parties names

Find your court location at the Illinois courts directory page. Scroll down the page until you see your county‘s name or court name. The address is next to it. Let's look at an example.

Example: Randy had a credit card debt of $3,700 with Midwest Credit and Collection (MCC). He received a lawsuit letter from them after he told their agent to stop calling him or he’d report them. Randy planned to ignore it, but his colleague advised him to respond to the lawsuit and follow up on his case if he didn't want to pay more than he owed. Since he didn’t know much about responding to a lawsuit, Randy used SoloSuit to help him customize his Answer and file it with the court on his behalf. After a week, he wanted to confirm if his Answer had been included in the court records. He searched for the Brown County courthouse address online and visited the courthouse. He got copies of his court records after filling in a request form and paying $3.

2. Access your Illinois court case records online

Illinois has a sophisticated tool called re: SearchIL to avail court documents to its citizens online. You need to register a free account to gain access to the portal. Once you sign up, you’ll be required to verify the account via your email, and immediately you'll be taken to a dashboard that requires you to fill in the following information to search your case:

  • Court location
  • Case category
  • Case type
  • Case filed date
  • Attorneys name (advanced search)

Some counties grant access to records specifically for their counties after submitting the required information. Here is the compiled list.

SoloSuit is ready to help

Even after your creditors file a lawsuit and you send your Answer, you do not have to go through the court process. SoloSuit can help you request creditors to settle out of court using our Motion to Compel Arbitration and SoloSettle. These documents are compelling, and most creditors accept an out-of-court settlement request. Start working on your document with us today.

Decide what to do next

What is the last document you received?

This calculator is for educational purposes only.

What is SoloSuit?

SoloSuit makes it easy to fight debt collectors.

You can use SoloSuit to respond to a debt lawsuit, to send letters to collectors, and even to settle a debt.

SoloSuit's Answer service is a step-by-step web-app that asks you all the necessary questions to complete your Answer. Upon completion, we'll have an attorney review your document and we'll file it for you.

Respond with SoloSuit

"First time getting sued by a debt collector and I was searching all over YouTube and ran across SoloSuit, so I decided to buy their services with their attorney reviewed documentation which cost extra but it was well worth it! SoloSuit sent the documentation to the parties and to the court which saved me time from having to go to court and in a few weeks the case got dismissed!" – James

Get Started

We have answers.
Join our community of over 40,000 people.

You can ask your questions on the SoloSuit forum and the community will help you out. Whether you need help now or are just looking for support, we're here for you.

Ask a Question

>>Read the FastCompany article: Debt Lawsuits Are Complicated: This Website Makes Them Simpler To Navigate

>>Read the NPR story on SoloSuit. (We can help you in all 50 states.)

How to answer a summons for debt collection in your state

Here's a list of guides for other states.

All 50 states.

Guides on how to beat every debt collector

Being sued by a different debt collector? Were making guides on how to beat each one.

Win against credit card companies

Is your credit card company suing you? Learn how you can beat each one.

Going to Court for Credit Card Debt — Key Tips

How to Negotiate Credit Card Debts

How to Settle a Credit Card Debt Lawsuit — Ultimate Guide

Get answers to these FAQs

Need more info on statutes of limitations? Read our 50-state guide.

Why do debt collectors block their phone numbers?

How long do debt collectors take to respond to debt validation letters?

What are the biggest debt collector companies in the US?

Is Zombie Debt Still a Problem in 2019?

SoloSuit FAQ

If a car is repossessed, do I still owe the debt?

Is Portfolio Recovery Associates Legit?

Is There a Judgment Against Me Without my Knowledge?

Should I File Bankruptcy Before or After a Judgment?

What is a default judgment?— What do I do?

Summoned to Court for Medical Bills — What Do I Do?

What Happens If Someone Sues You and You Have No Money?

What Happens If You Never Answer Debt Collectors?

What Happens When a Debt Is Sold to a Collection Agency

What is a Stipulated Judgment?

What is the Deadline for a Defendants Answer to Avoid a Default Judgment?

Can a Judgement Creditor Take my Car?

Can I Settle a Debt After Being Served?

Can I Stop Wage Garnishment?

Can You Appeal a Default Judgement?

Do I Need a Debt Collection Defense Attorney?

Do I Need a Payday Loans Lawyer?

Do student loans go away after 7 years? — Student Loan Debt Guide

Am I Responsible for My Spouses Medical Debt?

Should I Marry Someone With Debt?

Can a Debt Collector Leave a Voicemail?

How Does Debt Assignment Work?

What Happens If a Defendant Does Not Pay a Judgment?

How Does Debt Assignment Work?

Can You Serve Someone with a Collections Lawsuit at Their Work?

What Is a Warrant in Debt?

How Many Times Can a Judgment be Renewed in Oklahoma?

Can an Eviction Be Reversed?

Does Debt Consolidation Have Risks?

What Happens If You Avoid Getting Served Court Papers?

Does Student Debt Die With You?

Can Debt Collectors Call You at Work in Texas?

How Much Do You Have to Be in Debt to File for Chapter 7?

What Is the Statute of Limitations on Debt in Washington?

How Long Does a Judgment Last?

Can Private Disability Payments Be Garnished?

Can Debt Collectors Call From Local Numbers?

Does the Fair Credit Reporting Act Work in Florida?

The Truth: Should You Never Pay a Debt Collection Agency?

Should You Communicate with a Debt Collector in Writing or by Telephone?

Do I Need a Debt Negotiator?

What Happens After a Motion for Default Is Filed?

Can a Process Server Leave a Summons Taped to My Door?

Learn More With These Additional Resources:

Need help managing your finances? Check out these resources.

How to Make a Debt Validation Letter - The Ultimate Guide

How to Make a Motion to Compel Arbitration Without an Attorney

How to Stop Wage Garnishment — Everything You Need to Know

How to File an FDCPA Complaint Against Your Debt Collector (Ultimate Guide)

Defending Yourself in Court Against a Debt Collector

Tips on you can to file an FDCPA lawsuit against a debt collection agency

Advice on how to answer a summons for debt collection.

Effective strategies for how to get back on track after a debt lawsuit

New Hampshire Statute of Limitations on Debt

Sample Cease and Desist Letter Against Debt Collectors

The Ultimate Guide to Responding to a Debt Collection Lawsuit in Utah

West Virginia Statute of Limitations on Debt

What debt collectors cannot do — FDCPA explained

Defending Yourself in Court Against Debt Collector

How to Liquidate Debt

Arkansas Statute of Limitations on Debt

Youre Drowning in Debt — Heres How to Swim

Help! Im Being Sued by My Debt Collector

How to Make a Motion to Vacate Judgment

How to Answer Summons for Debt Collection in Vermont

North Dakota Statute of Limitations on Debt

ClearPoint Debt Management Review

Indiana Statute of Limitations on Debt

Oregon Eviction Laws - What They Say

CuraDebt Debt Settlement Review

How to Write a Re-Aging Debt Letter

How to Appear in Court by Phone

How to Use the Doctrine of Unclean Hands

Debt Consolidation in Eugene, Oregon

Summoned to Court for Medical Bills? What to Do Next

How to Make a Debt Settlement Agreement

Received a 3-Day Eviction Notice? Heres What to Do

How to Answer a Lawsuit for Debt Collection

Tips for Leaving the Country With Unpaid Credit Card Debt

Kansas Statute of Limitations on Debt Collection

How to File in Small Claims Court in Iowa

How to File a Civil Answer in Kings County Supreme Court

Roseland Associates Debt Consolidation Review

How to Stop a Garnishment

Debt Eraser Review

Do Debt Collectors Ever Give Up?

Can They Garnish Your Wages for Credit Card Debt?

How Often Do Credit Card Companies Sue for Non-Payment?

How Long Does a Judgement Last?

​​How Long Before a Creditor Can Garnish Wages?

How to Beat a Bill Collector in Court