Year started: 2013
Neutrals: Judges or attorneys with court approval.
Eligibility: Civil cases involving monetary disputes between $10,000 and $50,000.
Free Mediation Services Available?: No
The 19th Judicial Circuit's Arbitration Program, governed by Local Rule 17, was established in November 1990. Under the program, the court is mandated to refer all civil actions involving a monetary dispute between $10,000 and $50,000 to arbitration.
Arbitration hearings are conducted by a panel of court-approved arbitrators, who serve on a random, rotating basis. For court approval, arbitrators must be retired judges who are licensed to practice in Illinois and reside in Lake County, or attorneys who are licensed in Illinois, have practiced law for two of the last five years, and who reside, practice or maintain offices in Lake County. Panel chairpersons must have had trial practice for five of the last 10 years. Arbitrators must also be certified by attending an arbitration seminar.
Cases are referred to arbitration by the court clerk, who assigns a date for the hearing at the time of the case filing. The rule stipulates that hearings for cases involving no more than $15,000 should be scheduled no less than 120 days from the filing date. For cases involving between $15,000 and $50,000, the hearing date should be no less than 180 days from the time of the filing.
The rule sets the length of arbitration hearings at a half-day, not to exceed a full day. The panel makes its award immediately upon the completion of the hearing and files it with the court. The award should not exceed the amount sought in the complaint or counterclaim. The court then holds a final hearing for entry of judgment on the award, dismissal, or the scheduling of a trial date in the event of a party's objection to the award. Parties are required to attend all hearings of the arbitration process.
Between the 2007 and 2011 fiscal years, the average annual case load for the program was 3,569 cases. In fiscal year 2011, the number of cases referred to arbitration rose to 4,804. Of those, 3,455 were settled or dismissed (72%). Of the 404 arbitration hearings held in 2011, 108 awards were accepted and 217 were rejected. Only 46 cases, 1% of the program's caseload, went to trial.
19th Judicial Circuit Court of Illinois. Jan. 1, 2019
Resource Type: Rules - Court
Abstract: These are the local rules for the Illinois' 19th Judicial Circuit serving Lake County.
3-1.08: Small Claims Mediation Program: Cover's the Circuit's small claims mediation program. The rules cover confidentiality, scheduling, mediator appointment, a...Illinois Supreme Court. Illinois Supreme Court Rules, Jun. 4, 2008
Resource Type: Rules - Court
Abstract: The rules apply to actions subject to mandatory arbitration within judicial circuits in Illinois. They include the procedures for the appointment, qualification and compensation of arbitrators, the scheduling of hearings, discovery, conduct of the he...Oct. 9, 2007
Abstract: This section applies to court-annexed arbitration in the 19th Circuit (Lake County). The arbitration rules of the Illinois Supreme Court are referenced within. In this circuit, the amount in controversy must exceed $10,000 but not exceed $50,000. It ...
Summary: These annual reports summarize activity for all Illinois court-annexed mandatory arbitration programs. Programs featured in the report include the: 3rd Circuit*, 11th Circuit, 12th Circuit, 14th Circuit, 16th Circuit, 17th Circuit, 18th Circuit, 19th Circuit, 20th Circuit, 22nd Circuit*, and the Circuit Court of Cook County mandatory arbitration programs.
The report provides statewide statistics per fiscal year for each arbitration program and covers case types, caseload, average award amount, and average number of days that cases began in arbitration through final resolution. The report also features individual circuit profiles.
*Please note that reports on the 3rd Circuit mandatory arbitration program appear in the 2008-2016 annual reports and that reports on the 22nd Circuit mandatory arbitration program appear in the 2007-2016 annual reports. Reports on the remaining circuits can be found in each of the 2001-2017 annual reports.
2001 Annual Report
2002 Annual Report
2003 Annual Report
2004 Annual Report
2005 Annual Report
2006 Annual Report
2007 Annual Report
2008 Annual Report
2009 Annual Report
2010 Annual Report
2011 Annual Report
2012 Annual Report
2013 Annual Report
2014 Annual Report
2015 Annual Report
2016 Annual Report
2017 Annual Report
Publication: Illinois Bar Journal
Summary: This article discusses Illinois' mandatory arbitration program and gives both pros and cons of arbitration. It also discusses the Illinois Supreme Court 'Cruz' ruling, in which it laid down the rules governing attorney fees in mandatory arbitration.
Delta HawkinsArbitration Adminstrator
Nineteenth Judicial Circuit
415 W. Washington
Waukegan, IL 60085