Illinois New Laws 2023


New year, new laws: From public safety to hairstyles – Illinois lawmakers have issued unique rules covering everything from public safety to hairstyles.

Parts of the SAFE-T Act, which outlaws cash bail, take effect on Jan. 1. Under this measure, judges must assess whether those accused of crimes are dangerous to themselves or their community.

1. Minimum Wage Increase

Illinois will join other states by mandating employers pay employees at least a minimum wage; under its new legislation, this minimum will rise gradually over time to $15 an hour.

Illinois’ minimum wage was an issue during the 2014 gubernatorial campaign, as Democratic candidate Pat Quinn advocated for raising it while Republican Bruce Rauner stood firmly against it.

Employers in Chicago must abide by the city’s Minimum Wage Ordinance and state labor laws that entitle workers to a 20-minute paid break every 7.5-hour shift, as well as Illinois’ overtime pay law which requires overtime pay payments at the time and a half. Ogletree Deakins’ Wage and Hour Practice Group will continue closely monitoring these developments.

2. Abolish Cash Bail

Cash bail will no longer be mandatory for defendants charged with criminal offenses, ending a practice critics say criminalizes poverty. According to victim advocates who were involved in crafting this new law called the Pretrial Fairness Act, this change will allow more time and attention to be dedicated to high-risk cases such as murder, gang assaults, and robberies.

This law also limits pretrial incarceration to those who pose an immediate threat or are likely to flee. It requires police to issue tickets instead of arrests for certain low-level offenses. A nonpartisan task force working alongside the Supreme Court is working toward implementation ahead of Jan. 1, with lawmakers currently debating follow-up legislation clarifying any unclear or contradictory language contained within the bill; its hold on eliminating cash bail expires Sept 18th – find out more here!

3. Creating a Task Force for School Safety

The state will form a task force to examine school safety, covering topics ranging from class size and teacher-student ratios to how schools communicate with the public. They will also require uniform guidance regarding lockdown procedures that should help alleviate problems caused by district- and school-level variances in practices such as lockdown procedures.

School board members must take a course from the State Board of Education regarding trauma-informed practices for students and staff. This training will cover topics like understanding trauma’s impact, how to recognize it in students, care for them in response, and its effects on behavior and learning.

Illinois’ “Procurement Code” will require that any contract involving food or catering services at state-owned buildings prioritize bids from vendors offering compostable food ware. Furthermore, health insurance plans must provide coverage of medically necessary hormone therapy treatments for women undergoing hysterectomy procedures.

4. Requires State Agencies to Prioritize Bids for Compostable Foodware

New Year’s Day brings over 180 new laws for Illinois residents. These changes will impact Illinois workers in various ways.

Changes in how workers organize will greatly simplify unionization for Maryland baristas, janitors, and warehouse employees. Union groups believe it will make businesses more competitive while helping people secure better employment; business groups and conservatives oppose this measure, saying too much power will be granted to labor unions, leading to strikes and increased taxes.

Other changes include a mandate that employers give employees one day of rest every two seven-day periods and fair housing protections to prevent discrimination against applicants who use non-employment income sources such as Section 8 vouchers or disability payments for housing applications. Finally, senior citizens will now receive discounts on annual vehicle registration fees.

5. Requires the Secretary of State to Offer Professional Sports Team License Plates

Illinoisans love their sports teams, and this year will have more ways to demonstrate it thanks to legislation signed by Gov. Pritzker. Under new rules enacted by the Secretary of State, license plates featuring professional team logos such as Blackhawks, Bears, White Sox, or Cubs will now be made available for sale by the Secretary of State.

Each plate costs $25, and all proceeds go to support public schools across the state through two funds: Professional Sports Teams Education Fund and Common School Fund.

Beginning this year, Illinois has officially designated the eastern milk snake as its state snake following a bill proposed by Gentry Heiple of Carterville Junior High. This snake can be found throughout central and northern Illinois and grows 24 to 43 inches long, often hiding among fields, woodlands, or rocky hillsides.

6. Requires State Agencies to Compile Data on Crimes Against Children

Domestic violence survivors can now file online for protective orders so they won’t have to face their abuser in court, while counties with populations over 250,000 must also offer remote hearings. Under the Student Confidential Reporting Act passed in May, survivors can also report potential harm or self-harm of students or school employees via the Safe2Help helpline.

The Illinois Public Street Sideshow Act will take effect January 1 and prohibit anyone engaging in street sideshows that disrupt traffic flow or cause vehicles to slow or stop while making it unlawful for child sex offenders to operate or manage county or state fairs, amusement parks, or carnivals when children are present. Lastly, an Eastern Milksnake becomes Illinois’ official snake.

7. Requires State Agencies to Compile Data on Violent Crimes

Under a newly passed state law, state agencies must collect information on violent crimes committed by people with criminal backgrounds of domestic violence, rape, or sexual assault. Their findings will then help inform the state government’s task force to address this issue.

A recently passed law barring those convicted of certain sexual offenses against children from working at carnivals, county and state fairs, amusement parks, and similar venues mirrors restrictions already placed upon schools and child daycare centers.

Laws impacting working populations include rules designed to streamline the process for employees to demonstrate their linguistic qualifications and earn bilingual supplemental pay, as well as new legislation making discriminating based on the source of income illegal in real estate transactions; school districts can now incorporate lessons on safe gun storage into safety education classes; among many others.

8. Requires State Agencies to Compile Data on Sexual Assault

Under new state law, state agencies will be mandated to collect data on sexual assault. The information compiled will help reduce sexual violence while supporting victims and providing lawmakers, educators, and community members with knowledge that could prevent further incidents of this nature.

On Jan. 1, 2019, this law will go into effect and immediately impact all working populations across the state. Hourly wage workers who make at least $13 an hour will increase their pay by nearly 10 percent.

A new law will permit school students to report threats confidentially in response to the suicide of a Chicago girl bullied for her braids. Furthermore, it allows domestic abuse survivors to file petitions online instead of going to court. It will expand traits associated with race to include hair texture while protecting styles such as braids, locks, and twists.

9. Requires State Agencies to Compile Data on Violent Crimes

Every new year brings new laws that impact our everyday lives, including:

The SAFE-T Act will likely prove most contentious as it removes cash bail starting on Jan. 1. Many law enforcement agencies fear that eliminating this practice will encourage criminals, making it harder for them to keep them off the streets until their trial takes place.

The Jett Hawkins Act will establish a hotline between schools and Illinois State Police that receives reports about students or employees considering suicide, self-harm, or any other threats to themselves or others. Meanwhile, CROWN Act expands what defines “race” under Illinois Human Rights Act by including hair texture traits historically associated with race, such as braids, dreadlocks, and twists, as traits historically related to race to prevent discrimination in workplace environments. And Medical Examiners and Coroners Act mandates coroners notify the FBI when remains have not been positively identified within 72 hours after discovery.

10. Requires State Agencies to Compile Data on Violent Crimes

While Illinois’ SAFE-T Act, which will end cash bail in Illinois, has garnered significant media coverage this year, over 180 other laws will go into effect as of Jan. 1. These new laws address topics as diverse as job training assistance and hair discrimination as well as designating dolostone as an official state rock.

One of these new laws is a mandate requiring police officers to wear body cameras in cities and counties with populations exceeding 100,000. Furthermore, this law mandates officers receive more training on using force effectively, crisis intervention techniques, and first aid procedures.

Other changes include a new law that exempts individuals whose cars have been stolen or carjacked from violations, impounding fees, and fines imposed. It also establishes a pilot program providing eligible people job training assistance and support services. At the same time, drivers with disabilities can get verified for parking placards without going through a doctor.