New Year, New Laws

The beginning of 2017 brings with it approximately 200 new laws to Illinois! Below are a few of the notable criminal laws that will be effective as of January 1, 2017.


Drug Court Opioid Abuse (HB 5594)

If a defendant needs opioid abuse or addiction treatment, the court must require the defendant to participate in prescribed drug treatments under the care of a licensed physician

Criminal Identification Act (HB 5723)

Provides that a person convicted of operating a vehicle without an insurance policy shall be guilty of a petty offense instead of a business offense

Taking of Bail by Peace Officer (SB 2252)

Requires police to accept currency (cash) for bail

Cell Site Simulator Device Use (SB 2343)

Law enforcement may only use cell site simulators to locate or track the location of a communications device

Although there are limited exceptions, the agency seeking the use of cell site simulators must first get a court order allowing its use

Criminal Damage to Property (SB 2907)

Increases the damage to property amount from $300 to $500 for it to be a Class 4 felony

Approaching Disabled Vehicles (HB 6006)

Requires vehicles to change lanes when approaching a car that has hazard lights on

Order of Protection: Electronic Filing Pilot Program (HB 6109)

The Illinois Supreme Court may now establish a pilot program that will allow electronic filing of petitions for temporary orders of protection

Barber, Cosmetology, Esthetics, Hair Braiding, and Nail Technology Act (HB 4264)

For the initial renewal of a cosmetologist’s license, and for subsequent renewals after that, one hour of continuing education on domestic violence and sexual assault awareness will be required

Law Enforcement Policies (HB 5538)

During initial training and every five years after that, law enforcement officers will receive education on how to help victims of domestic violence. This will include being able to spot both physical and psychological signs of abuse.

Expungement of Juvenile Law Enforcement & Court Records (HB 5017)

Persons with juvenile records are now able to petition to expunge those records at any time

The court must grant the request automatically if the person was never charged, if the charges were dismissed, if the person was not found delinquent, if the person was given supervision and completed it successfully, or if the offense (if committed by an adult) would have been a Class B or C misdemeanor or a petty/business offense

Sex Offenses & Sex Offender Registration Task Force (HB 5572) created

Juveniles: Kinds of Sentencing Orders (HB 6291)

Minors found guilty of violating the Illinois Controlled Substances Act shall not be committed to the Department of Juvenile Justice for Class 3 or 4 felony violations unless it is their third or subsequent finding of a violation of probation for not compling with court ordered treatment/programming

Duties of Public Defender (SB 2370)

 Minors under the age of 15 charged with murder or sexual assault must be represented by counsel throughout interrogation