13.8 Contempt Proceedings

(a) In General

(i) Initiation - All requests for Rule to Show Cause, Adjudication of Indirect Criminal Contempt or Indirect Civil Contempt must be in writing, must specifically identify the order or provision alleged to have been violated, and must be properly served on the responding party.

(ii) Attachments - A copy of the Judgment or Order alleged to have been violated must either be attached to any petition or motion alleging a violation, or presented to the court.

(iii) Issuance of Rule - Upon the presentation, pursuant to notice, of a verified petition, or sworn testimony in open court, seeking a finding of indirect civil contempt, which makes a prima facie showing of noncompliance, a judge may issue a Rule to Show Cause. The court may issue a rule notwithstanding the responding party’s right to file a written response.

(iv) Form of Order - When a judge issues a Rule to Show Cause, the form Order on Rule to Show Cause provided by the court shall be used.

(v) Service of Rules - Unless otherwise directed by the court, service of any Rule to Show Cause shall be as required by Cook County Circuit Court Rule 6.1(a) and Illinois Supreme Court Rule 105(b).

(vi) Findings of Contempt - Every finding or adjudication of contempt shall be by written order and shall contain specific findings of fact. In cases involving child support arrears, the order shall state the precise amount of any arrearage found to be due and owing. Upon every finding of contempt that results in incarceration, a form order of commitment provided by the court shall be used.

(vii) Return to Court - Every order remanding a contemnor to the custody of the Cook County Department of Corrections for indirect civil contempt must include a provision that the contemnor will be returned to the court for status at periodic intervals, but in no event less frequently than every thirty (30) days.

(b) Appointment of Attorneys in Contempt Cases-Domestic Relations Lawyer Referral Program

(i) Qualifications and Administration


a. The Domestic Relations Division of the Circuit Court of Cook
County in conjunction with any duly constituted, recognized Bar Association, will recruit attorneys to represent indigent litigants in Domestic Relations contempt hearings. An attorney appointed by the Court in such hearings shall be compensated as provided in Illinois Supreme Court Rule 299. Interested attorneys will be referred to the applicable Bar Association to complete an application. The application forms will be submitted to the applicable entity (committee) created by that Bar Association for review of such forms. This entity will review the applications and approve or disapprove applicants. If necessary, the
entity will interview applicants. If approved by the entity, the Bar Association will submit the names of newly nominated attorneys to the Presiding Judge of the Domestic Relations Division for his/her approval.

b. Each attorney qualified to represent indigent litigants in Domestic Relations contempt hearings will submit proof annually of the attorney’s license in good standing, his/her current malpractice insurance coverage and information of any “ARDC” activity by completing an “Application for Continued Participation,” provided by the Bar Association.

c. The Bar Association will maintain a list of approved attorneys,
schedule weekly assignments during each month and submit the monthly schedule to the Presiding Judge at least two weeks prior to each month. Each judge will make appointments pursuant to the monthly schedule.

d. In order to qualify as an attorney representing indigent litigants in
Domestic Relations contempt hearings, an attorney must have at least two years experience in domestic relations cases, must meet the yearly update requirements set forth in paragraph (b) above, and must attend an initial training seminar.

e. After the Court’s ruling on the contempt hearing, the attorney
appointed by the Court may file his/her Petition for Attorney’s Fees setting forth the in-court and out-of-court services provided to the Respondent on the Petition for Rule to Show Cause. The work done shall be set forth with specificity setting forth the service provided and the amount of time expended on each service. The attorney shall provide notice to all parties or attorneys of record as well as notice to the attorney’s own client in the contempt proceedings. The Petition shall not be presented on the Agreed Order Motion Call. The Court shall approve all of the time that was reasonably and necessarily expended in representing the Respondent in the contempt proceedings. Upon the receipt of the Order for Attorney’s Fees, the appointed attorney shall personally deliver or mail a certified copy of the Order with a copy of the petition and exhibits to the Office of the Cook County Clerk, Clerk of the Board, 118 N. Clark Street, Chicago, IL 60602.

(ii) Procedure for Appointments

a. Upon the filing of a Petition for Rule to Show Cause Why the
Respondent to the Rule shall not be held in Civil or Criminal Contempt for the failure to comply with a prior Court order or where the Court already has entered a ruling finding the Respondent in contempt, and in the event that the Court determines that an attorney should be appointed for Respondent on the petition, the Court shall inquire whether the Respondent is financially able to obtain his/her own counsel. In the event that the Respondent states that he/she is not financially able to obtain his/her own counsel, the Court shall conduct an inquiry under oath
to determine the financial circumstances of the Respondent who shall submit an affidavit in accordance with Rule 13.3.1 of the Circuit Court of Cook County setting forth his/her income, expenses and assets owned. When the Court determines that the Respondent lacks sufficient funds to obtain counsel, it shall appoint an attorney from an approved list provided by the Presiding Judge of the Domestic Relations Division as otherwise prescribed in these Rules.

b. The Court shall cause to be entered an Order of Appointment
of the selected counsel in accordance with the form prescribed by the Presiding Judge of the Domestic Relations Division. Each judge will then cause a copy of the Order of Appointment to be forwarded to the appointed attorney by mail as well as by facsimile with a return date on which the matter will be next heard by the Court as set forth in the Order. The appointing judge will then cause a copy of the Order to be mailed to all counsel or parties of record.

c. In the event the attorney appointed by the Court is unable to
accept the appointment he/she shall immediately notify the Court in writing with a copy to all parties. This notification may be made by facsimile. The Court shall then immediately appoint another attorney from the approved list utilizing the same procedure set forth above.

d. In the event that the Court determines that the appointed
counsel for Respondent must immediately appear on the date of the appointment then the Court shall cause the Clerk of the Court to contact counsel by phone and request him/her to immediately appear. In the event counsel is unable to immediately appear, the Court shall appoint another counsel who is able to immediately appear to represent the Respondent.

e. Once the Court appoints an attorney to represent the Respondent on a Petition for Rule to Show Cause, the appointed attorney shall represent the Respondent solely on the issues set forth in the Petition for Rule to Show Cause and on no other matters. The appointment of the appointed attorney shall terminate at the ruling on the hearing on the Petition for Rule to Show Cause unless otherwise extended by the Court for good cause shown. In the event that the attorney appointed to represent the Respondent determines that an irreconcilable conflict exists between the attorney and the Respondent, the attorney may file a petition to withdraw from the case. Nothing in these Rules prevents the Court from reappointing the attorney for the Respondent in the same cause on a future date for good cause shown.

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