Can’t find your tenant? Maybe they are in Jail

All sorts of difficulties can arise when a landlord cannot find a tenant. One day, I will write on the difficulties of abandonment of property the many issues it creates. In short though, abandonment issues, especially in CRLTO covered tenancies, require more caution than the plain code of the CRLTO might suggest and landlords who mistakenly take back a property that they deem abandoned can find themselves in a real legal mess of wrongful eviction claims. When a tenant can’t be found, a myriad of notice and service issues must be analyzed. One possible explanation for a tenant’s absence is that the tenant might be in jail.  Here are a couple of links where landlords can search to see if their tenants are in jail.

Here is the search page for the Illinois corrections system.
Here is the search page for the Cook County Jail system.
Here is the search page for the Federal prison system.

There is a procedure established by the jail systems for serving tenants who are in jail with service of process and notices.  Before assuming a tenant is “gone”, it always makes sense to perform due diligence to see if the tenant can be found.  Searching the jails is one part of that due diligence.

About Richard Magnone

Co-founding member of Reda | Ciprian | Magnone, LLC, attorney at law and Illinois licensed lawyer since 1996.
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