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Alias Summons : Postponing the return date for a Summons that could not be served; an Order for Alias Summons is filed with the clerk, and service is attempted again.

Appearance: Formal submission to the courts by the defendant (respondent) in response to a Complaint or Summons.

Appearance day: See Return day.

Certified Order: An Order that has been certified by the Clerk of the Circuit Court as being valid.

Complaint: The First Pleading in action for eviction, setting forth the allegations upon which the request for relief is based.

Constructive eviction: Creating an unbearable situation to force the tenant to move out.

Court call: Cases slated to be heard in a specific court session.

DBA: Acronym for "Doing Business As." See my article on Assumed Business Name procedures here.

Default Judgment: A default judgment is the type of judgment that is entered by the judge when the defendant has not filed an Appearance or come to court for the case.

Detinue: A claim for repossession of personal property plus additional monetary damages. In some jurisdictions, self-help repossession is not allowed; the creditor must go through the courts to regain possession of the property. Also see Law Magistrate.

Forcible Entry and Detainer: The removal of a tenant from rental property by a law enforcement officer. Before a tenant can be evicted, a landlord must win an eviction lawsuit.

Instanter: Immediate

Judgment: A ruling by the court favoring one or more parties. A judgment for possession is valid for 90 days unless extended by the court. A money judgment is valid for seven years, and can be renewed. (735 ILCS 5/2-1602) Sec. 2-1602. Revival of judgment. (a) A judgment may be revived in the seventh year after its entry, or in the seventh year after its last revival, or at any other time thereafter within 20 years after its entry.

Law Magistrate: Illinois civil claims for amounts greater than $5,000 but less than $50,000, plus all Forcible Entry and Detainer claims. An Illinois Case Category Code of "LM" includes Detinue, Replevin and Forcible Detainer.

Motion: A written application to the court for some particular relief, which is made upon advance notice to the other party.

Nuisance abatement: Nuisance - Behavior which offends or bothers another person. A nuisance can serve as the basis for which one files a lawsuit. Abatement is reducing or eliminating the nuisance.

Order: The Court's ruling on a Motion requiring the parties to do certain things or setting forth their rights and responsibilities. An Order is reduced to writing, signed by the judge and filed with the Court. An Agreed Order is a transcribed or written resolution of the disputed issues, approved by the parties, signed by the judge and filed with the Court.

per diem: Per day.

Posting: The sheriff shall post 3 copies of the notice in 3 public places in the neighborhood of the court where the cause is to be tried, at least 10 days prior to the day set for the appearance, and, if the place of residence of the defendant or unknown occupant is stated in any affidavit on file, shall at the same time mail one copy of the notice addressed to such defendant or unknown occupant at such place of residence shown in such affidavit. Excerpted from (735 ILCS 5/9-107) (from Ch. 110, par. 9-107)

prima facie: Latin: "at first appearance." A prima facie case is one in which from the very beginning of a trial there appears to be sufficient evidence for the plaintiff to win, unless the defense can present evidence which is to the contrary.

pro se: Latin: "On behalf of oneself." This phrase refers to a person who is not a lawyer but who chooses to represent himself in court.

Proof of Service: A proof of service is a court paper filed by a process server as evidence that she served the witness or party to the lawsuit with the court papers she was instructed to serve. It is also required that other case documents filed with the court, such as motions, briefs, status reports, etc., be given or mailed to all parties. The copy filed with the court is usually required to have an accompanying proof of service by the person who gave or mailed the document to the parties. It is usually sworn to under penalty of perjury.

Replevin: Court action for repossession of personal property without any additional monetary damages. In some jurisdictions, self-help repossession is not allowed; the creditor must go through the courts to regain possession of the property. Also see Law Magistrate.

Return date (also known as Appearance date): The return day. Both terms are used interchangeably throughout my book.

Return day (also known as Appearance day): Date scheduled to report to a judge in reply to a Summons, civil or criminal.

Stay: A court order halting a judicial proceeding.

Summons: A notice to appear in court.

Unconscionable lease terms: Unconscionability is a term used to describe a defense against the enforcement of a rental contract based on the presence of terms unfair to the lessee.




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Last modified: September 29, 2009