Summary of Illinois' Foreclosure Laws

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If you are facing foreclosure in Illinois, it’s important to understand some of the basics, including:

  • the most common type of foreclosure procedure (judicial v. nonjudicial) used in Illinois
  • how much time you have to respond
  • your rights and protections in the process, and
  • what happens afterwards (for example, whether you’ll be liable for a deficiency judgment).

Below we have outlined some of the most important features of Illinois foreclosure law. Keep in mind that this is just a summary; we’ve included statute citations so you can get more details from the laws themselves. And be sure to check out Nolo’s extensive Foreclosure section, where you can find information about all aspects of foreclosure, definitions of foreclosure terms (like redemption and reinstatement), and options to avoid foreclosure.

Topic

State Rule

Most common type of foreclosure process

Judicial

Notice of the foreclosure

Foreclosing party cannot initiate a foreclosure lawsuit until 30 days after mailing a grace period notice advising borrower about housing counseling. An additional 30-day period is available for borrowers who enter into counseling. Homeowner has 30 days to respond after being served with summons and complaint. After court issues a judgment of foreclosure, a notice of sale must be published three times between 45 and seven days before sale. Notice of sale must be mailed to borrower at least ten business days before the sale.

Reinstatement of loan before sale

Available within 90 days after foreclosure complaint is served on borrower. Under High-Risk Home Loan Act, foreclosing party must serve notice of right to reinstate at least 30 days before starting foreclosure lawsuit.

Redemption after sale

Available for seven months after the complaint is served or three months after foreclosure judgment entered, whichever is later. If the mortgage holder is the purchaser at the sale, property sold below a certain value may be redeemed for 30 days after confirmation of sale by paying sales price plus costs and interest.

Special protections for foreclosures involving high-cost mortgages

Special defenses to foreclosure lawsuit. High-Risk Home Loan Act, 815 Ill. Comp. Stat. §§ 137/1 to 137/175. Before filing a lawsuit to foreclose, the foreclosing party must send a notice informing the borrower of the right to cure the default within 30 days. 815 Ill. Comp. Stat. § 137/105.

Special state protections for service members

Certain service members may apply to the court for a 90-day stay of foreclosure proceedings or, in some cases, a reduction in the monthly payments for up to 90 days. 735 Ill. Comp. Stat. §§ 5/15-1501.5, 5/15-1501.6. Court can postpone proceedings if state or federal military service directly results in failure to meet pre-service obligations. 330 Ill. Comp. Stat. § 60/5.1

Deficiency judgments

May be sought as part of the foreclosure lawsuit. Allowed only if borrower is served personally (unless borrower enters an appearance in the action).

Cash exempted in bankruptcy

$4,000 for one person, $8,000 for a married couple

Notice to leave after house is sold

Court may order homeowner removed 30 days after it confirms the sale. New owner must file a complaint for forcible entry and detainer to remove any occupant who wasn’t personally named in the foreclosure case.

Foreclosure statutes

735 Ill. Comp. Stat §§ 5/15-1501 to 5/15-1605

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