Pro Se Chicago's Weblog

October 22, 2019

Stand up for whistleblower who helps others behind the scenes

Filed under: Uncategorized — Linda Shelton @ 12:47 pm

Shelton’s next court date is December 11, 2019 at 10 am room 506 2600 S California Ave.

https://wordpress.com/post/cookcountyjudges.wordpress.com/1420

April 19, 2018

Complaint for mandamus; civil rights relief from incompetent judges


When judges or officials are incompetent, malicious, or plain mean and violate your civil rights there are two other means that the public usually doesn’t realize by which they can obtain relief even during the case. The judge or official must have a mandatory (non-discretionary) duty under the law or constitution to do a particular act, must have failed to do it, and must be able to do it if ordered to do so in order to use a mandamus complaint. Civil rights law is very complicated. Both types of complaints should be handled by an attorney, but as a starting place if you are interested in such complaints then this is an example that was filed by me, a non-attorney pro se. Look up the case law and look up cases regarding mandamus or civil rights in the circuit courts and under your states’ laws.

  1. Mandamus – this is where you ask a court to order an official (including a judge) to perform a task that is mandatory and not discretionary like set a bail when no bail was set in violation of the law – in Illinois no bail is allowed only on murder cases, cases where the sentence may be life, or cases where a due process hearing was held and the defendant is proven to be a danger to the public or himself.
  2. Civil rights complaint for declaratory and injunctive relief. Suppose a court refuses to allow you to put any witnesses on the stand, refuses to allow you to subpoena documents or refuses to accommodate your disabilities, even when you discussed them with the disability coordinator and followed the court procedures. Under the federal civil rights act section 1983 you can ask a different court (either state or federal) under federal law to declare the judge’s acts or orders in violation of law or the constitution (declaratory relief) and order the judge to follow the law and allow you compulsory process or force the judge to accommodate your disabilities (injunctive relief).

April 13, 2018

2018 U.S. and Illinois criminal law regarding insanity, temporary insanity, fitness, and mental illness


The legal profession from attorneys to judges and police officers are NOT taught sufficiently about the difference between the lay, professional, and legal understanding and interpretation of terms such as insanity, temporary insanity, fitness, and mental illness.

This is a specialized area of law that invades all criminal courts and the misuse of these concepts harm the mentally ill, the disabled, the victims of crimes, the innocent accused, as well as society as a whole.

It is imperative that American courts come to grips with this unfortunate situation as 11% of the population is known to suffer from mental illness and American prisons and jails have become the largest and most inadequate providers of mental health services in America today.

This link will allow you to download a 20 page, two article document that 1st defines these terms in the medical and legal realms, and then, 2nd summarizes in an up to date memorandum of law the laws pertaining to the legal precedent and legal procedural management of issues related to insanity, temporary insanity, fitness, and mental illness in Illinois and U.S. courts. click here for link

I welcome your feedback as well as would welcome pro bono assistance in this matter before the Cook County Courts. Contact me at picepil@aol.com

Please feel free to distribute this document to all attorneys and judges, as well as pro se (self-represented) litigants. I would appreciate a note about where you have distributed it and how well it is received.

Linda Lorincz Shelton, PhD, MD

(Retired disabled physician – neonatology, pediatrics, psychiatry, and pathology/Paralegal, Self-Taught Constitutional Legal Specialist/civil rights activist)

March 20, 2018

Judicial endorsement 3/20/18

Filed under: Uncategorized — Linda Shelton @ 2:24 pm

#CookCountyJudges I endorse
Kelly Patricia Hillison
Keith L Spence
Kevin Patrick Cunningham
Bradley R Towbridge
Kathleen Maloney Vehey
Timothy John Leeming
Lori Ann Roper

January 17, 2017

Help when children falsely removed by DCFS in Cook County, IL


Who to Contact if children falsely removed by DCFS

The Family Defense Center

70 E. Lake St, Suite 1100
Chicago, IL 60601
Phone: 312-251-9800
Fax: 312-251-9801
fdc@familydefensecenter.org

The Family Defense Center is a nonprofit organization whose mission is to advocate justice for families in the child welfare system. We advocate for families who need our help the most: families threatened with losing their children to foster care. Nothing is more painful for a child than to be taken from the only parents he or she knows. Yet, child protection systems throughout America frequently remove children from parents as a first resort, not a last resort. Many parents lose custody of their children to state foster care systems primarily because they are poor or because they are victims of abuse themselves. Far too many children in foster care bounce from home to home and are separated from siblings. Any family can be the victim of a false, harassing, or misguided Hotline call.

We handle the following types of cases: We do not generally handle the following types of cases:
  • Ongoing DCFS investigations for abuse or neglect
  • Safety Plan negotiations
  • Appeals of Indicated findings and Administrative Review Actions
  • A limited number of Juvenile Court cases in which DCFS is attempting to take protective custody if we have been counseling the client during an open investigation
  • Civil rights cases alleging violations of the 4th and 14th amendments.
  • Precedential appellate cases
  • Divorce
  • Parentage/paternity
  • Child Support
  • Criminal cases
  • Open Juvenile Court cases (this means that if your Juvenile Court case has already started when you first contact us, we will most likely not be able to offer you legal representation)
  • Adoption
  • Private custody cases
  • Guardianship
  • Cases in Domestic Relations Court such as Orders of Protection
  • DCFS foster care placement appeals

 

November 6, 2016

From Ken Ditkowsky on the need for more courtwatchers — MaryGSykes.com

Filed under: Uncategorized — Linda Shelton @ 11:07 pm

A few years ago here in Illinois the League of Woman Voters sent their members out to be ‘court watchers.’ The Court watchers reported some of the outrageous actions that were evident is some of the Courts. The constant pressure brought a measure of reform that has since dissipated. The Court […]

via From Ken Ditkowsky on the need for more courtwatchers — MaryGSykes.com

May 21, 2016

New Trial Setting Call System replaces Black Line Call in Cook County Courts


Law division cases will now be scheduled for a trial setting date in courtroom 2005 either 15 months or 28 months from the date filed. All litigants will receive postcard notice of such hearings. The new system is explained in the following order from the new Law Division Presiding Judge. This Trial Setting Call system replaces the unconstitutional Black Line Call System.

STATE OF ILLINOIS           )
)  SS
COUNTY OF COOK            )

 

IN THE CIRCUIT COURT OF COOK COUNTY, ILLINOIS LAW DIVISION

GENERAL ADMINISTRATIVE ORDER 16-2 TRIAL SETTING CALL

IT IS HEREBY ORDERED: Effective April  1 , 2016, the Black Line Call currently heard in Courtroom 2006 will be replaced by a Trial Setting Call, that will also be heard in Courtroom 2006.

I.  The following Law Division Black Line Call General Administrative Orders are hereby vacated: 03-1, 04-2, 05-1, 05-2 and 06-1.

II.  Law Division Master Calendar System:

A. Cases included in the Master Calendar System:

  1.   All cases currently assigned to the Motion Calendar Section of the Law Division as designated by the Presiding Judge of the Law Division.

B. Cases excluded from the Master Calendar System:

  1.   All cases currently assigned to the Individual General Calendar Section, Individual Commercial Calendar Section, or the Tax and Miscellaneous Remedies Section of the Law Division, unless designated by specific order.

C.  The Master Calendar System consists of the following:

  1.   Motion Calendars as designated by the Presiding Judge of the Law
  2.   (Courtroom 2006) Trial Setting
  3.   (Courtroom 2005) Trial Call, Trial Setting Status Call, Prove-up Call and Motion Calls.
  4.   Trial Rooms as designated by the Presiding Judge of the Law Division.

Ill.      This General Administrative Order will apply to all cases currently assigned to the Law Divisions Master Calendar System and all cases filed in the future assigned to the Master Calendar System as designated by the Presiding Judge of the Law Division.

IV.     Master Calendar Case Designations:

A.  Category 1 Case Type: All cases assigned to the Master Calendar excluding: Medical Malpractice, Legal Malpractice, Product Liability and Construction

  1.   Trial Setting Date will be approximately 15 months from the filing date of the
  2.   Trial Setting Date: Electronic or postcard notice will be sent by the Clerk of the Circuit Court to all parties of record or pro se litigants approximately twelve (12)months from the filing date of the
  3.   Trial Setting Date will be approximately 90 days from the date electronic or postcard notice is sent out.

B.  Category 2 Case Type: Medical Malpractice, Legal Malpractice, Product Liability  and Construction Injury

  1.   Trial Setting Date will be approximately 28 months from the filing date of the lawsuit.
  2.   Trial Setting Date: Electronic or postcard notice will be sent by the Clerk of the Circuit Court to all parties of record or pro se litigants approximately twenty-four {24) months from the filing date of the Lawsuit.
  3.   Trial Setting Date will be approximately 120 days from the date electronic or postcard notice is sent out.

V.  All cases appearing on the Trial Setting Call will receive Trial All parties should discuss, prior to appearing for Trial Setting, reasonable Trial Dates to suggest to the Court on the Trial Setting Date.

VI.  Motion Procedure for Master Calendar Cases:

A. The assigned Motion Judge will address all discovery issues and hear all motions excluding motions to continue a trial, motions to vacate, alter, modify, or reconsider orders entered in Courtroom 2005 or 2006 and those motions that must be presented to the Presiding Judge of the Law Division by Circuit Court General Order. These excluded motions should be presented on the appropriate Courtroom 2005 Motion Call.

B.  All motions to continue trial on a case assigned to the Master Calendar Section must be presented to the Presiding Judge of the Law Division or his or her designee on the appropriate Courtroom 2005 motion call. Motion Judges may not set or continue a case for trial.

C.  If all discovery is complete and pending motions ruled upon, the assigned Motion Judge shall enter a Trial Certification This order shall be entered prior to any assigned trial date. If the certified case has no assigned trial date, the case shall be placed on the Trial Setting Status Call in Court room 2005, fourteen (l 4) days from the entry date, for the attorneys to appear and receive a trial date. Failure to have a trial certification order entered will not serve as a basis to continue the trial date.

D.  If at any time All Parties Agree that their case is ready for trial they may present a motion in Courtroom 2005 for Immediate Trial Assignment and the case will be assigned by random computer assignment for the trial to begin

VII. The Transition from the Black Line Trial Call to the Trial Setting Call:

A.  Commencing April I , 2016, Master Calendar Cases will no longer enter the Black Line Pool of

B.  Cases will no longer be categorized or re-categorized, removed from the Black Line Pool or re-sequences within the Black Line

C.  The Black Line Call will continue in Courtroom 2006, until all cases currently in the Black Line Pool have been assigned a trial

D. Cases not currently in the Black Line Pool will be identified as Transition

  1.  The Transition Trial Setting Call shall be conducted from May l, 2016 through July 31, 2016, in Courtroom 2006, with the oldest cases appearing first.
  2. The cases identified for transition will begin appearing in Courtroom 2006 at a rate approximately 60 per day for Trial
  3. Electronic or postcard notice will be sent out to attorneys and all pro se litigants to appear in Courtroom 2006 on the Transition Trial Setting Call, at least thirty (30) days prior to the court
  4. Parties shall be assigned a trial date on the Transition Trial Setting Call, and should discuss an agreed upon trial date, prior to their appearance on the Transition Trial Setting
  5. Effective July 31, 2016, the transition process shall be

VIII. Trial Setting Call

A. Effective August 1, 2016, the Trial Setting Call will commence in Courtroom 2006 with up to thirty (30) cases appearing per day, based on case type and filing

IX.  Nothing in this order will limit the inherent power and discretion of any Judge to enter an order the Judge feels is

It is further ordered that this Order be spread upon the records of this Court.

Dated at Chicago, Illinois this 23rd day of March, 20 1 6.

Honorable James P. Flannery Jr.

Presiding Judge Law Division

March 18, 2016

How to get your kids’ school records if divorced


This was recommended by David Bambic and Heather Stern – activists trying to reform family courts and make them follow the law!

Help with getting School records here is the format that is used at any and all schools works in 50 states.
Subject: fepra letter/REQUEST FOR FILES
EXAMPLE XXXXXXXX IL. SCHOOL DISTRICT XXX
PROVEN IT WORKS IN THIS ILLINOIS DISTRICTS
Principal :EMAIL ADDRESS

XXXXXX Middle School
SCHOOL ADDRESS HERE

RE (XXXXXX X XXXXXX) D.O.B. (XX/XX/XXXX) S.S. (ss number)
SEVNTH (seventh )
PARENT NAME
ADDRESS
XXXXXX IL.XXXXX

Dear Principal Please send complete records of the
above student, my (son or daughter), to me at the above
address.

Test results, application forms, cumulative scholastic
records, enrollment records, health records, and any
other information concerning my (son or daughter), are
also requested. Please include grades of all subjects
to date. If the grading system is in the least
unusual, please include an interpretation. Also please
include all “shot” records, vaccination records, and
immunization records, insurance records, counsellor’s
reports, accident reports, incident reports,
enrollment cards and report cards. You are also
requested to include all records of or involving
psychological counseling, testing, etc.

In addition, please send me copies of all
“developmental evaluation”, psychological and
psychiatric evaluations, test results and reports,
Division of Youth and Family Services (DYFS) reports.
Division of Social Services reports, home studies,
custody evaluations, copies of any and all requests
received from any source concerning (FULL NAME OF CHILD)
as well as any other documents, reports,
correspondence and the like in (FULL NAME OF CHILD)
file. Please send copies of all documents related to
or in connection with any case worker or social worker
investigation, interviews, etc. I, also, request that
I receive copies of all notices and material sent to
the custodial parent.

I also request that copies of all of the
aforementioned type of reports, etc. that become
available as (FULL NAME OF CHILD) progresses through the
(XXXXXXXX Middle School ) be sent to me as they become part of his record or are available to the school. As you are most likely aware, being a professional educator in the teaching and/or school administration profession, Federal Law requires that I be furnished all of the above information. Your attention is directed to The Family Educational Rights and Privacy act (FERPA), Public Law 93-380, Title 20, USCA Section 1232(g), et. seq. and Title 20, USCA Section 93-568 et seq. As you also know, and your local school board lawyer will be glad to confirm and verify this for you, Federal Law requires that this information, files, papers, documents, etc. cannot be kept from me and must be released to either parent if requested. This is a formal written request, pursuant to the above cited FERPA. In the event any of the above requested reports or information is legitimately confidential by law, and not allowed to be released to me, I request that the rest of this request be considered separately, and an itemized list of the reacted items be included. Sincerely, PARENTS FULL NAME
FULL ADDRESS
E-MAIL CONACT: XXXXXXXXXXXXX@XXXXX
PHONE CONTACT :1-XXX-XXX-XXXX

August 25, 2015

Sample appeal – Illinois small claims court – landlord steals items


Small claims court can be frustrating when judges look down on pro se plaintiffs and simply rubber stamp everything the defendant’s lawyer states.  This is a sample appeal of such an unjust ruling where the plaintiff lost due to I believe purposeful misconduct of an attorney and a judge. Read the Appellant’s brief here.

Note that appeals are not like trials. The Appellate Court may ONLY consider information on the record on appeal and in the transcripts. YOU CAN NOT ADD new evidence or information. Therefore, at trial in the local court, make a list and make sure you have all your witnesses and evidence or you won’t be able to add it later.  If the judge refuses to hear a witness or allow you to introduce evidence, then ask the judge to “make an offer of proof” (i.e. to have the  person testify or admit the evidence without it being considered just so that it is on the record). If you anticipate this will be a problem, then file the evidence or affidavit instead of as a motion, label it an “offer of proof” and file it in your case attached to this “offer of proof” where you state you are filing this offer of proof and why you are doing so.

The litigants names and case number were changed so they remain anonymous, except for the name of the corrupt landlord’s corporation and the judge.

Remember, in small claims, Illinois Supreme Court Rules 286(b) allows a small claims court to hear and view all relevant evidence, admit evidence with more relaxed rules of procedure and rules of evidence upon order of the court. This means the court may allow affidavits as evidence and not require the presence of a witness and may allow documents to be admitted without strict rules of authentication.

You must follow strictly all appeal rules, so don’t forget to read Illinois Supreme Court Rules for civil appeals and your local court rules also. Illinois Supreme Court Rules are here. If you don’t follow them, your appeal will be rejected.

Note strict rules such as:

  • 1 1/2 inch margin on left
  • requirement of certification page stating you followed the rules as to page limits
  • you use an appendix and not exhibits
  • the appendix must include an index to the record on appeal and the transcripts (if any), that the page number of testimony of specific witnesses must be indexed and that if you did not have a court reporter and made a “bystander’s report” instead that it is also in index, a copy of the order appealed from, and a copy of the notice of appeal
  • notice of filing and service and filing of record on appeal or record of proceedings (transcripts)
  • don’t forget to include your $50 filing fee or a petition for indigency (see Illinois Supreme Court web site and your local appellate court division’s rules)
  • bind the appeal brief securely on the left side (three staples is OK) [UPDATE: As of 2019, in Illinois courts, you must file all documents through the electronic filing system – which you can connect to on the Clerk’s web site for the court for which you are filing the documents]

Note that you can not just make conclusory statements (“They ripped me off”).  You must back up all your statements, documents, testimony with evidence (testimony by witnesses, documents and reference to “authorities”), with case law (where a court has interpreted a law and said this is how the rules or statutes work and what they mean), or back it up with reference to other authorities (statutes, supreme court rule, administrative rules – note statutes are sent to administrative rules committee and then an administrative rule is made – many pro se litigants are not aware of this – see here; there are similar administrative rules in federal law and all state laws).

August 5, 2015

Sample of Illinois Petition for Leave to Appeal & Petition to Appeal as a Right in Illinois Supreme Court


The Illinois Supreme Court is a real stickler for details. You MUST follow their rules. Rules for civil appeals. Rules for criminal appeals.

Appeals are a difficult nut to crack. Remember that every statement you make must be backed up by reference to where it is on the record, to case law, or to statute, rule, code, or administrative regulation. You should not make arguments that you have not backed-up in this manner. Do not make conclusions of fact or law in your argument that are not backed-up. Also remember that you CANNOT add evidence or use hearsay. You can ONLY APPEAL THAT WHICH IS ALREADY ON THE RECORD (in the record of proceedings = transcripts, or in the record on appeal = court file). If you did not preserve the issue for review = keep it on the record, object at the trial, in the post-trial motions, and on appeal, you cannot argue it.  There are VERY FEW issues that are not subject to the requirement to “preserve the issue for review”. This is a complex topic that you should read a bit about before writing your appeal.

Feel free to use this petition for appeal to the Illinois Supreme Court that was recently submitted. (I’ve changed the names and case numbers for privacy purposes). Read both the petition and the appendix to petition which has attached a blank court order that must be included, although you do not have to give them 20 copies of the order, just one.

I am not an attorney, just a paralegal, so if you use this petition as an example to follow, you do so at your own risk and should check the Illinois Supreme Court Rules for appeals, as well as with an attorney before you sign and submit your petition. There may be errors here that I have not caught.

Remember you have to pay a $50 filing fee as fee was recently raised so include a check or a petition for waiver of fees due to indigence.

You must sent an original and 19 copies of petition plus appendix, plus a stamped envelope and extra copy if you want the clerk to return a date-stamped copy. [UPDATE: In Illinois as of 2019 you must file a copy of everything electronically – you can connect to the “electronic filing portal” through the court’s web site. Then after the electronic file is accepted, which the clerk will send you an email, then you must send the court 11 paper copies of the filing – check their web site and rules as they keep changing]

Typeface must be 12-point or larger EVEN IN FOOTNOTES.

Page limit is 20 excluding cover sheet, affidavit of compliance with page limits, and notice of filing, although if you call the clerk, they may say that the signature or one sentence extra on 21st page is OK.

The margins must be 1 1/2 inches on the left and 1 inch on all other sides.

The document must be securely bound along the left side, not with just one staple. Three staples are OK.

You must discuss the standard of review for each point in your argument – de novo = only issues of law; abuse of discretion would include issues of fact, but this is a bit complicated so do some research on standard of review for your type of issue.

Appeal is a a right if the issues are issues of first impression, which means that they involve laws that have never before been interpreted by the Illinois Supreme Court = there is no previous opinion on an issue which is similar (i.e. “on point” with your issue).

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