Frequently Asked Questions...

 

When is my next court date?

 

            Court dates can be retrieved from this website by clicking on the “Public Access to Court Records” button on the main page, then either:

  click the type of case and enter your first and last name,

  or enter your case number (two digit year, one or two letter case type, number with no punctuation and no spaces)

l  Click either:

  Name Search if you entered your name and case type, or

  Case Search if you entered your case number

l  Underneath the Defendant and Plaintiff names is an Information Section containing:

  File Date

  Courtroom

  Next Appearance Date, and

  Offense Date

 

Where is Courtroom ___ ?

 

            All of the courtrooms are located at the Champaign County Courthouse, 101 East Main Street, Urbana, Illinois.  There are eleven courtrooms in the Courthouse.  A, B, C, D, & E are on the third floor.  F, G, H, J & K are on the second floor.  Courtroom L is located on the first floor to the left of the Circuit Clerk's Office.  For access to the second and third floor use the elevators located to the right as you exit security.  The main stairs near the elevators only go as high as the second floor.

 

Can I get a copy of my birth certificate or a death certificate from the Circuit Clerk's Office?

 

            The Circuit Clerk's Office only has judicial records.  To receive a copy of your birth certificate or a death certificate you need to contact the County Clerk's Office, 1776 E. Washington Street, Urbana, IL. 61802, (217) 384-3720.

 

Where do I go to get a Marriage License?

 

         Marriage Licenses are issued by the County Clerk's Office, not the Circuit Clerk's Office.  There is an application online that you can print out and take to their office.  Their website is located at http://www.champaigncountyclerk.com/vitals/

 

 

Can I pay traffic tickets at the Circuit Clerk’s Office?

 

         Yes.  Any traffic ticket for an offense committed in Champaign County that does not require a court appearance may be paid here.  Law enforcement agencies are allowed 10 days to turn documentation into our office, so it is best to wait 10 days before coming in to pay the ticket.

           

Can I pay parking tickets at the Circuit Clerk’s Office?

 

            Parking tickets must be paid to the city that issued them.

 

I got a traffic ticket and gave the officer my driver’s license as bond.  Now I need a picture id for the airport.  What can I do?

  

For a minor traffic offense, if you originally gave the officer your Driver’s License as bond, you may come into our office and leave a cash bond in its place.

 

What forms of payment do you accept?

 

            You can pay with cash or money order for the amount of the fine.  You may pay with a personal check, but you will have to pay an additional $1.25 fee.  Checks must have the signer’s name pre-printed.  Your address and telephone number must be on the check.  If the check is over $150, your driver’s license number must also be on the check.  You can also pay with a credit card, but it has an additional fee of at least $5.00.  Credit card fees are based on a sliding scale depending on the amount of the charge.

 

I just received a jury summons and I can't serve, what do I do?

 

         If jury service will result in undue hardship or extreme inconvenience because of grave illness in your family or a similar serious problem, and you want to be excused from service, you (or someone on your behalf) must appear before the Jury Commission prior to your report date.  The Jury Commission meeting date will be on your jury summons.  If you cannot serve the requested week, but you can serve at a later time, call (217) 384-3767 and ask to be set over to a later date.

 

Where is the jury commission?

 

            The Jury commission is located in Brookens Administrative Center, Meeting Room 2, 1776 East Washington Street in Urbana.

 

What do I do to get a passport?

 

            We have forms located in our office to get a passport.  There is also a link on our web page to the State Department where you fill out the forms online, print them out to bring into our office, along with a valid photo ID and proof of United States citizenship.  We currently DO NOT have the ability to take your passport photos at the office.  Sorry for the inconvenience.

 

Does my child need to be with me to apply for a passport for him / her?

 

         Actually, both parents and the child should be present.  If both parents cannot be present, parental application permission documentation will need to be presented.    In addition, you will need to submit proof of your child's United States citizenship, evidence of the child's relationship to both parents, two passport photos, pay the applicable fee, and provide the child's Social Security Number.  All of this information needs to be supplied in conjunction with the DS-11 form from the United States Department of State.  There is a link from our main page.  Because of rapidly changing appearances of children, a passport for a child under age 16 is only valid for 5 years, while an adult passport is valid for 10 years.  Please see http://travel.state.gov/passport/get/minors/minors_834.html for more information.

 

How much does it cost to get a passport?

 

            Passports have the following fees:

l  Application Fee ($110 age 16 and older, $80 under age 16)

l  Execution Fee ($25)

l  Cost of Passport Photos (we charge $10 for a set of 2)

 

If it needs to be expedited:

l  Expedite Fee ($60)

l  Optional overnight delivery fee: $14.96.

           

            For more information see the United States Department of State website at http://travel.state.gov/

 

What is the cost for filing for a court case?

 

            Court costs vary, depending on the type of court case.  Actual costs are listed on our main web page under Fee Schedule. 

 

What do I do to get an Order of Protection?

 

            Forms requesting an Order of Protection are available from our office or in our Forms section on our main web page.  Please fill out both the Petition and the Order.  You must fill out the form to the best of your ability either with or without a lawyer’s assistance and bring it into our office.  You must go before a judge for the Order of Protection to be initiated.  Order of Protection hearings are normally heard every weekday morning at 11:00.  If you arrive early, it is possible to have the Order of Protection entered the same day.  If you need assistance, please call our office (384-3725) and we will give you further direction.

 

What is the cost for a copy of court documents?

 

            Photocopies of files are available for $1 for the first page, 50¢ per page for the next 19 pages, and 25¢ for each additional page beyond that.  If the copies need to be certified then there is an additional $2.00 charge per certification.  We cannot take requests for copies over the phone.  All requests must be done in person or in writing.

 

Can I get a record of all of my child support payments?

 

            Yes.  Computer printouts of child support payments made through our office are available for $6.00 per case.  These are only released to the payee, the payer, or to an attorney of record in the case. Please bring a valid state or federal photo identification card with you.

 

Is there a charge for filing a Will?

 

         There are no charges incurred for the filing of a will with our office.   Wills can only be filed after a person is deceased.

 

Could you give me the phone number for the child support State Disbursement Unit (SDU)?

 

         The phone number for SDU is (877) 225-7077.

 

I need to change my mailing address for child support, what do I do?

 

         You can do it in person with a valid picture ID or you can write a letter to the Circuit Clerk's Office, 101 East Main Street, Urbana, IL 61801 explaining that you need to change your address for child support, sign it, and mail it to us.  Please include a copy of your photo ID.  We cannot accept change of address information online or over the telephone.

 

I'd like to see if any child support payments have been made.  Who do I need to speak to?

 

            Please utilize the REACH system at (217) 384-1286.  It is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.  You should have received information on this system when the payments were ordered.  If you did not receive information on how to access this system, please call the Circuit Clerk Child Support Division at (217) 384-3730.

 

What is the cost for a jury for my trial?

 

            Costs vary by case type.  Please see the Fee Schedule on the main page. 

 

What are your hours?  Are you open during lunch hour?

 

            The Circuit Clerk's Office is open Monday through Friday from 8:00 A.M. to 4:30 P.M. and operates continuously throughout the lunch hour.  We are closed on the following holidays: 

-         New Year's Day                                                           January 1

-         Martin Luther King's Birthday (observed)                 Third Monday in January

-         President's Day                                                           Third Monday in February

-         Spring Holiday                                                            Friday before Easter

-         Memorial Day                                                             Last Monday in May

-         Independence Day                                                      July 4

-         Labor Day                                                                   First Monday in September

-         Christopher Columbus Day                                         Second Monday in October

-         Veteran's Day                                                              November 11

-         Thanksgiving Day                                                       Fourth Thursday in November

-         Thanksgiving Friday                                                   Day after Thanksgiving

-         Christmas Eve                                                             December 24

-         Christmas Day                                                             December 25

 

If a holiday lands on a Saturday, the office will be closed the day before on Friday.

If a holiday lands on a Sunday, the office will be closed the following day on Monday.

In the case of inclement weather, check local news to see if the Champaign County Courthouse is closed or closing early.

 

 

Why will you not give me legal advice?

 

            Circuit Clerk employees are barred by statute from providing legal advice.

 

I want to represent myself.  How can I get help?

 

            There is a Self-Help Desk located near Courtroom L on the first floor of the Champaign County Courthouse.  There you will find some legal documentation that may help you in representing yourself in front of the court.  The Self-Help Desk is typically open from 9 a.m. to noon on Monday and Wednesday.  For more information call them at (217) 356-1351.

 

I need a background check, what do I need to do?

 

         You can do your own record search on this website, which has criminal records of Champaign County cases dating back to 1992.  We also have public access computers at our office that you can use.

            However, if you need a formal statement from this office about a record search or lack of a criminal record, we will need the name and date of birth for whom you're searching, along with the years you would like us to search.  The cost of a search is $6.00 per year searched.  Once we have the information and the money, one of our office staff will conduct the search, and print out a form with any retrieved information on it.  If you mail in your request, please include a self-addressed stamped envelope.

 

How do I get a criminal case off of my record?

 

         The Illinois Office of the Appellate Defender is required by law to provide information and forms for the expungement process, which is the legal term for the removal of criminal records.  They can be found at http://state.il.us/defender/exp.html.  They can also be reached at 866-431-4907.

Not all criminal cases can be expunged.  You will need to determine if your case is eligible for expungement.  Information sheets and forms are available either from the Appellate Defenders Office or in our office.  Once you determine whether or not your case is eligible for expungement, fill out the forms and return them to our office with the correct filing fee (see Fee Schedule).  Various entities will have 60-90 days to object.  If no one objects, the judge will approve your request and we will notify you.  If some one objects, a court date could be set for you to present your case. 

 

What items cannot be brought into the courthouse?

 

         Always attempt to arrive at the courthouse at least 15 minutes before your scheduled business.  Security often has a line, especially at the beginning of a day and immediately after lunch.  By order of the Sheriff, the following items are prohibited in the Champaign County Courthouse:

 

Cell Phones

Guns or ammunition

Knives, swords, razors, or box cutters

Personal protective spray, (i.e. pepper spray, mace, etc.) or aerosol sprays of any kind

Items perceived as threatening (i.e. manicure kits, scissors, laser pointers, kitting needles, etc.)

 

You also will be asked to drink from any open beverage containers.

 

What are my options if I am charged with a minor traffic violation?

 

         A minor traffic violation is one that does not require a court appearance.  At the bottom of a traffic ticket, just above the officer’s signature are two boxes, one of which must be checked: “Court Appearance Required” or “No Court Appearance Required”.  If your ticket has No Court Appearance Required, you have three options:

 

1.              Plead guilty and pay the fine, by mail or in person, without going to court.  (A conviction will be entered on your driving record).

2.              Plead not guilty and request a trial.

3.              Request the Traffic Safety Program.  You do not have to appear in court, and a conviction is not entered on your driving record if you:

a.       Sign the “Plea of Guilty” portion of your traffic ticket,

b.      Pay the $120 fine and $42 non-refundable program fee,

c.       Attend the National Safety Council’s Defensive Driving course offered by Parkland College,

d.      Avoid further violations in the following six months.

 

There are some qualifications that must be met in order to take the Traffic Safety Program:

 

1) In the 12 months prior to this ticket, you have not been charged with any traffic offense that resulted in a conviction anywhere in Illinois,

 

2) In the 4 years preceding this ticket, you have not been on court supervision or had a moving violation amended to a non-moving violation, or attended traffic safety school anywhere in Illinois,

 

3) Your ticket is not marked with “Court Appearance Required”,

 

4) You understand that I DO PLEAD GUILTY to the charges on this ticket, WAIVE my right to a hearing by the court, and REQUEST court supervision,

 

5) You agree to pay the non-refundable $42 Traffic Safety Program fee plus the fine indicated on the ticket.  I understand that taking the class online or at another location will require an additional fee.

 

Can you change my court date?

 

         The Circuit Clerk’s Office does not have the ability to change your court date.  In a criminal matter, you should consult your attorney.  In a minor traffic matter, you could file a “Motion to Continue”, that is, ask for a later court date.  However, there is no guarantee that the judge will approve such a request.  You can also consult an attorney.  In civil cases, it would be wise to contact the opposing party to see if an arrangement can be made.  You could also talk to an attorney.

 

Can you pass a message to someone in the courtroom?

 

         We cannot pass messages to the courtrooms. 

 

Can the Circuit Clerk’s Office notarize documents for me?

 

         To notarize a document is to attest to the authenticity of the signature.  We do not notarize documents.  It can be done at the Urbana Free Library and other places in town.

We are commonly asked to certify a document.  To certify something is to verify that it is a true and accurate copy of a court record.  To certify a document is $2 plus the cost of copying.

 

My child is an adult now.  How long must I continue to pay child support?

 

            In Illinois, child support is most commonly set by a judge’s order.  That order will often have a termination date.  If so, that is the date you can stop paying child support, assuming your payments are up-to-date.  If there is no termination date listed on the order for support, you will have to fill out a Modify, Suspend, Abate packet located in our office, or available for download from our Forms section.  Once completed and turned into our office, you will have to appear in court to plead your case.