Illinois Legal Aid Online recently launched 2 new online automated document systems for use by attorneys. If you don't know what automated documents are, just think "Turbo Tax" - they are interactive systems for easily completing legal documents and forms. Automated documents save attorneys time and are especially helpful for pro bono and newer attorneys.
Automated documents can be found in the Legal Resources section of www.IllinoisLegalAdvocate.org and www.IllinoisProBono.org. You must be logged in to the website to use them. We now offer 13 multi-document packets covering common matters in family law, probate, landlord-tenant, consumer law, and general civil practice and discovery. The 2 new additions are:
• Eviction Defense Pleadings and Discovery Documents - Generates documents based on common law, FED Act, Chicago Residential Landlord Tenant Ordinance, and other applicable state and federal statutes, including Motion to Dismiss, Answer with Affirmative Defenses and Counterclaims, Interrogatories, Requests to Produce, Notice of Deposition, Appearance, Transfer Order.
• Child Support Enforcement Documents - Produces a Petition for Order on Rule to Show Cause, Affidavit in Support of Petition, Order, Notice to Withhold Income and other mailings to employer, Notice of Motion, and Uniform Order of Support.
On www.IllinoisLegalAid.org we now feature 52 automated documents for the public, including many common pleadings, motions, petitions, and letters. These interactive programs allow self-represented persons to accurately and legibly complete their legal documents. Recent additions and revisions, which can be found here, include:
• Small Claims Complaint and Summons for Cook County - Guides pro se plaintiff through the process of filing, including how to find agent for service of process for a business, and how to select appropriate method of service.
• Petition for Expungement of Juvenile Record - Takes user through a series of questions to find out if his Juvenile arrest record can be expunged and creates appropriate “Section 1” or “Section 2” petition.
• Child Support Modification Documents - Produces all essential documents, including “Notice of Withholding” and related mailings to employer, Uniform Order for Support with party names and children’s names in all cases, and a pre-filled UOS including interest on arrearages if both parents agree and are submitting Motion together. Qualifying questions direct users to contact IV-D if the agency is a necessary party.
• Statewide Order of Protection - Updated with the new forms circulated in January by the Conference of Chief Judges.
• Uncontested Divorce - Our most popular form set has been substantially revised so that the judgment now disposes of both petitioner AND respondent’s property, the property and custody screens are easier for pro se users to understand, the Joint Parenting Agreement has been simplified and improved, and the program now creates the UCCJEA custody declaration.
• Federal Court Filing Documents and Federal Court In Forma Pauperis - Revised to match new forms created specifically for use by pro se plaintiffs in the Northern District of Illinois. Instructions for how to find agent for service of process for a business, and how to select appropriate method of service are provided.
• Request for Crisis Assistance - Helps TANF benefit recipients draft a letter to request cash Crisis Assistance from the state in defined circumstances.
• Letter to Creditor or Collection Agency from Collection-proof Debtor: Guides user through a series of questions to determine whether all his property and income are exempt from collections under Illinois law. If user is “collection-proof,” the program drafts letters to any creditors or collection agencies that the user lists.
This winter Illinois Legal Aid Online added two important new positions to our staff: Program Director and Development Associate. We are delighted to announce that we promoted from within our ranks to fill these new positions.
Outreach Coordinator Teri Ross is our new Program Director, responsible for the overall operations and management of ILAO's technology, content, and outreach programs and supervision of all program personnel. Operations Manager Natasha Wasinski is now ILAO's first Development Associate. She will assist the board and executive director in expanding funding sources and increasing revenue for ILAO, and will engage in donor cultivation, grant writing, special events planning, and communications.
We are also excited to announce that we recently hired outstanding replacements for Teri and Natasha. Stacie Colston, our new Outreach Coordinator, will implement outreach programs to the legal aid community, the private bar, courts, law schools, a wide variety of organizations that serve lower-income Illinois residents, and the public. Jamie Smith will start next week as Operations Manager, and will be responsible for the overall management of administrative, financial, and human resource functions. Jamie will also be your new contact for training and support to post news, events, jobs and volunteer opportunities on ILAO's websites.
Please join us in congratulating and welcoming Teri, Natasha, Stacie and Jamie!
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