Year started: 2007
Neutrals: Retired judges or attorneys with court approval.
Eligibility: All civil claims solely for money damages between $10,000 and $50,000, and small claims exclusively for money where least one party has made a jury demand.
Free Mediation Services Available?: No
The 3rd Judicial Circuit's Court-Annexed Mandatory Arbitration Program began in Madison County in July 2007. Following the guidelines set by the Supreme Court Rules 86-95, the program mandates arbitration for all civil claims solely for money damages in an amount between $10,000 and $50,000, as well as small claims exclusively for money in which at least one party has made a jury demand.
Arbitration referrals can be made by the court clerk at the time of filing, or later by party agreement or upon court order. Hearings are conducted by a 3-person panel of court-approved arbitrators, selected randomly by the Administrative Assistant for Arbitration. To obtain court approval, arbitrators must be an attorney in good standing who has been practicing for at least five years, or a retired judge. Arbitrators must also attend a court-provided mandatory arbitration seminar. As of October 2007, the circuit court had a roster of 150 approved arbitrators.
Arbitrators are paid through filing and answer fees charged to the parties by the court.
Each party and their attorney, as well as any witnesses called to testify, are required to attend the arbitration hearing. If a party does not attend the hearing, an award may be entered against that party upon which the court may enter judgment. The rule states that hearings are expected to take a maximum of two hours, and only one hearing will be held for each case. The rule instructs the panel to render its decision and enter an award on the same day of the hearing.
In fiscal year 2011, 1,627 cases were referred to the program and the grand majority, 77%, were disposed. Of the 139 arbitration hearings held, 68 awards were accepted (49%) and 49 awards were rejected (35%). No award was entered in 22 cases; these either settled before an award was entered or were still pending at the end of the year. Seventeen cases, 1% of the program's caseload, proceeded to trial.
3rd Judicial Circuit of Illinois. Jan. 1, 2019
Resource Type: Rules - Court
Abstract: The local rules for Illinois' 3rd Judicial Circuit cover Illinois' Madison and Bond Counties.
Rules of Practice Arbitration: Covers Madison County's mandatory arbitration program.
Rules of Practice, Part 5: Mediation in Medical Malpractice Cases:...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...
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.
Kathleen HarrisArbitrator Administrator
Third Judicial Circuit Court