Legislation Establishes State Ombudsperson to Educate Owners and Help Resolve Disputes
CHICAGO –(ENEWSPF)—December 29, 2014. Governor Pat Quinn signed a new law that will help protect condominium owners and associations across Illinois. The legislation creates a position within the Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation to help resolve disputes and to educate condominium owners. This action is part of Governor Quinn’s agenda to protect property owners across Illinois.
“This new law will give condominium unit owners alternatives to litigation as they work to resolve disputes,” Governor Quinn said. “By helping prevent potentially expensive litigation the Condominium Ombudsperson can help keep costs down for property owners throughout Illinois.”
House Bill 4204, sponsored by State Representatives Elaine Nekritz (D-Northbrook) and State Senator Heather Steans (D-Chicago), creates the Condominium and Common Interest Community Ombudsperson Act which establishes an Ombudsperson within the Department of Financial and Professional Regulation. This new position will provide dispute resolution assistance on behalf of condominium unit owners beginning January 1, 2019.
“I have heard from a number of constituent condo owners who have struggled to find answers when they have disputes,” Representative Nekritz said. “This bill creates an important process to have those disputes resolved, and I am happy to have helped push for this new law to address this problem.”
“The rights and responsibilities of condo owners and associations can be complex, so I’m pleased that Illinois will follow the lead of four other states whose residents are able to enlist the assistance of a condominium ombudsperson in resolving conflicts,” Senator Steans said. “Educating the public about condo law and assisting with dispute resolution when requested will help prevent unnecessary and expensive litigation.”
Also under the law the new office will provide educational materials on a website that are relevant to condominiums and common interest communities. Additionally, condominium and common interest community associations must have a written policy for resolving disputes and have registered with the Department of Financial and Professional Regulation. The legislation is effective July 1, 2016.