(15 ILCS 205/0.01) (from Ch. 14, par. 0.01)
Sec. 0.01. Short title. This Act may be cited as the Attorney General Act.
(Source: P.A. 86-1324.)
(15 ILCS 205/1) (from Ch. 14, par. 1)
Sec. 1. Before entering upon the respective duties of his office, the attorney general shall be commissioned by the governor, and shall take the following oath or affirmation:
I do solemnly swear (or affirm, as the case may be), that I will support the constitution of the United States and the constitution of the state of Illinois, and that I will faithfully discharge the duties of the office of attorney general, according to the best of my ability.
And shall also execute a bond, to the People of the State of Illinois, with good and sufficient securities in the penal sum of $10,000, to be approved by the governor, and then filed in the office of the Secretary of State. The bond shall be conditioned upon the faithful discharge of the duties of the office, and the paying over all moneys as provided by law, which bond shall run to and be for the benefit of the state, county, corporation or person injured by a breach of any of the conditions thereof.
(Source: P.A. 86-962.)
(15 ILCS 205/2) (from Ch. 14, par. 2)
Sec. 2. (Repealed).
(Source: P.A. 90-372, eff. 7-1-98. Repealed internally, eff. 7-1-98.)
(15 ILCS 205/3) (from Ch. 14, par. 3)
Sec. 3. If any person elected to the office of attorney general shall fail to give bond, or take the oath required of him, within 20 days after he is declared elected, the office shall be deemed vacant, and if, being required to give additional bond, as provided in section two hereof, he fails to do so within 20 days after notice of such requirements, his office may, in the discretion of the governor, be declared vacant and filled as provided by law.
(Source: P.A. 86-962.)
(15 ILCS 205/4) (from Ch. 14, par. 4)
Sec. 4. The duties of the Attorney General shall be--
First - To appear for and represent the people of the State before the supreme court in all cases in which the State or the people of the State are interested.
Second - To institute and prosecute all actions and proceedings in favor of or for the use of the State, which may be necessary in the execution of the duties of any State officer.
Third - To defend all actions and proceedings against any State officer, in his official capacity, in any of the courts of this State or the United States.
Fourth - To consult with and advise the several State's Attorneys in matters relating to the duties of their office; and when, in his judgment, the interest of the people of the State requires it, he shall attend the trial of any party accused of crime, and assist in the prosecution. When the Attorney General has requested in writing that a State's Attorney initiate court proceedings to enforce any provisions of the Election Code or to initiate a criminal prosecution with respect to a violation of the Election Code, and when the State's Attorney has declined in writing to initiate those proceedings or prosecutions or when the State's Attorney has neither initiated the proceedings or prosecutions nor responded in writing to the Attorney General within 60 days of the receipt of the request, the Attorney General may, concurrently with or independently of the State's Attorney, initiate such proceedings or prosecutions. The Attorney General may investigate and prosecute any violation of the Election Code at the request of the State Board of Elections or a State's Attorney.
Fifth - To investigate alleged violations of the statutes which the Attorney General has a duty to enforce and to conduct other investigations in connection with assisting in the prosecution of a criminal offense at the request of a State's Attorney.
Sixth - To consult with and advise the governor and other State officers, and give, when requested, written opinions upon all legal or constitutional questions relating to the duties of such officers respectively.
Seventh - To prepare, when necessary, proper drafts for contracts and other writings relating to subjects in which the State is interested.
Eighth - To give written opinions, when requested by either branch of the general assembly, or any committee thereof, upon constitutional or legal questions.
Ninth - To enforce the proper application of funds appropriated to the public institutions of the State, prosecute breaches of trust in the administration of such funds, and, when necessary, prosecute corporations for failure or refusal to make the reports required by law.
Tenth - To keep, a register of all cases prosecuted or defended by him, in behalf of the State or its officers, and of all proceedings had in relation thereto, and to deliver the same to his successor in office.
Eleventh - To keep on file in his office a copy of the official opinions issued by the Attorney General and deliver same to his successor.
Twelfth - To pay into the State treasury all moneys received by him for the use of the State.
Thirteenth - To attend to and perform any other duty which may, from time to time, be required of him by law.
Fourteenth - To attend, present evidence to and prosecute indictments returned by each Statewide Grand Jury.
Fifteenth - To give written binding and advisory public access opinions as provided in Section 7 of this Act.
(Source: P.A. 95-699, eff. 11-9-07; 96-542, eff. 1-1-10.)
(15 ILCS 205/4a) (from Ch. 14, par. 4a)
Sec. 4a. Attorneys and investigators appointed by the attorney general, and on his payroll, when authorized by the attorney general or his designee, may expend such sums as the attorney general or his designee deems necessary for the purchase of items for evidence, the advancement of fees in cases before United States courts or other State courts, and in the payment of witness or subpoena fees.
Funds for making expenditures authorized in this Section shall be advanced from funds appropriated or made available by law for the support or use of the office of attorney general or vouchers therefor signed by the attorney general or his designee. Sums so advanced may be paid to the attorney or investigator authorized to receive the advancement, or may be made payable to the ultimate recipient. Any expenditures under this Section shall be audited by the auditor general as part of any mandated audit conducted in compliance with Section 3-2 of the Illinois State Auditing Act.
(Source: P.A. 95-331, eff. 8-21-07.)
(15 ILCS 205/4b) (from Ch. 14, par. 4b)
Sec. 4b. Before the filing of the first pleading in federal district court in any civil action brought by the Attorney General in the name of the State as parens patriae on behalf of the natural persons residing in this State, as authorized by Section 4c of the Clayton Act, 15 U.S.C.A 15c, the Attorney General shall file with the Auditor General a statement disclosing the fee arrangements applicable to the attorneys' fees in relation to that civil action.
(Source: P.A. 80-828.)
(15 ILCS 205/4c) (from Ch. 14, par. 4c)
Sec. 4c. (a) Subject to the qualifications set forth below, investigators employed by the Attorney General shall be peace officers and shall have all the powers possessed by policemen in cities and by sheriffs; provided, that Attorney General's investigators may exercise such powers anywhere in the State in cooperation with and after contact with the local law enforcement officials.
No investigator employed by the Attorney General shall have peace officer status or exercise police powers unless he or she successfully completes the basic police training course mandated and approved by the Illinois Law Enforcement Training Standards Board or such board waives the training requirement by reason of the investigator's prior law enforcement experience or training or both.
The board shall not waive the training requirement unless the investigator has had a minimum of 5 years experience as a sworn officer of a local, state or federal law enforcement agency, 2 of which shall have been in an investigatory capacity.
(b) The Attorney General must authorize to each investigator employed under this Section and to any other employee exercising the powers of peace officers a distinct badge that, on its face, (i) clearly states that it is authorized by the Office of the Attorney General and (ii) contains a unique identifying number. No other badge shall be authorized by the Office of the Attorney General.
(Source: P.A. 90-540, eff. 12-1-97; 91-883, eff. 1-1-01.)
(15 ILCS 205/4d)
Sec. 4d. Locating support obligor. The Attorney General may request and receive from employers, labor unions, telephone companies, and utility companies location information concerning putative fathers and noncustodial parents for the purpose of establishing a child's paternity or establishing, enforcing, or modifying a child support obligation. In this Section, "location information" means information about (i) the physical whereabouts of a putative father or noncustodial parent, (ii) the putative father or noncustodial parent's employer, or (iii) the salary, wages, and other compensation paid and the health insurance coverage provided to the putative father or noncustodial parent by the employer of the putative father or noncustodial parent or by a labor union of which the putative father or noncustodial parent is a member.
(Source: P.A. 89-395, eff. 1-1-96.)
(15 ILCS 205/4e)
Sec. 4e. (Repealed).
(Source: P.A. 92-19, eff. 6-30-01. Repealed internally, eff. 7-1-02.)
(15 ILCS 205/6) (from Ch. 14, par. 6)
Sec. 6. Whenever the attorney general is sick or absent, or unable to attend, or is interested in any cause or proceeding, civil or criminal, which it is or may be his duty to prosecute or defend, the court in which said cause or proceeding is pending may appoint some competent attorney to prosecute or defend such cause or proceeding, and the attorney so appointed shall have the same power and authority in relation to such cause or proceeding as the attorney general would have had if present and attending to the same.
(Source: P.A. 86-962.)
(15 ILCS 205/6.3)
(This Section may contain text from a Public Act with a delayed effective date)
Sec. 6.3. Worker Protection Unit.
(a) The General Assembly finds that the welfare and prosperity of all Illinois citizens and businesses requires the establishment of a Unit within the Attorney General's Office dedicated to combatting businesses that underpay their employees, force their employees to work in unsafe conditions, and gain an unfair economic advantage by avoiding their tax and labor responsibilities. The Worker Protection Unit shall be focused on protecting the State's workforce to ensure workers are paid properly, guarantee safe workplaces, and allow law-abiding business owners to thrive through healthy and fair competition. Businesses that violate the State's worker protection laws put a greater burden on taxpayers by hurting the State's ability to provide critical services; compliant businesses cannot compete against those who gain an unfair advantage by evading their responsibilities.
(b) There is created within the Office of the Attorney General a Worker Protection Unit, consisting of Assistant Attorneys General appointed by the Attorney General, who, together with other staff as deemed necessary by the Attorney General, shall have the power and duty on behalf of persons within this State, to intervene in, initiate, and enforce all legal proceedings on matters related to the payment of wages, the safety of the workplace, and fair employment practices, including, without limitation, the provisions of the Prevailing Wage Act, the Employee Classification Act, the Minimum Wage Law, the Day and Temporary Labor Services Act, or the Wage Payment and Collection Act, whenever the Attorney General determines that such action is necessary to protect the rights and interests of Illinois workers and Illinois businesses.
(c) Prior to initiating an action, the Attorney General shall conduct an investigation and may: (1) require an individual or entity to file a statement or report in writing under oath or otherwise, as to all information the Attorney General may consider necessary; (2) examine under oath any person alleged to have participated in or with knowledge of the alleged violation; or (3) issue subpoenas or conduct hearings in aid of any investigation.
(d) In an action brought under this Section, the Attorney General may obtain, as a remedy, monetary damages to the State, restitution, and equitable relief, including any permanent or preliminary injunction, temporary restraining order, or other order, including an order enjoining the defendant from engaging in a violation, or order any action as may be appropriate. In addition, the Attorney General may request and the court may impose a civil penalty against any person or entity found by the court to have violated the Prevailing Wage Act, the Employee Classification Act, the Minimum Wage Law, the Day and Temporary Labor Services Act, the Wage Payment and Collection Act, or any other law related to the payment of wages, the safety of the workplace, or fair employment practices, in a sum not to exceed the maximum amount of any civil penalty prescribed by law. Neither the State nor an aggrieved individual may recover monetary relief, including civil penalties, in more than one proceeding related to the same violation.
(e) Upon the Attorney General's request, the Illinois Department of Labor shall provide any materials or documents already in the Department's possession pertaining to the enforcement of this Section. The Office of the Attorney General may use information obtained under this Section, including information that is designated as and that qualifies for confidential treatment, which information the Attorney General's Office shall maintain as confidential, for law enforcement purposes only, which information may be shared with other law enforcement officials. Nothing in this Section is intended to take away or limit any powers of the Attorney General under common law or other statutory law.
(Source: P.A. 101-527, eff. 1-1-20.)
(15 ILCS 205/6.4)
(This Section may contain text from a Public Act with a delayed effective date)
(Section scheduled to be repealed on December 1, 2021)
Sec. 6.4. Worker Protection Unit Task Force.
(a) There is created a Worker Protection Task Force within the Office of the Illinois Attorney General. The Task Force shall be coordinated by the Office of the Attorney General to promote a statewide outreach and enforcement effort to target businesses that violate the State's worker protection laws. The purpose of the Task Force shall be to:
(1) create a coalition in Illinois dedicated to
protecting the State's workforce and law-abiding businesses;
(2) facilitate the timely sharing of information
between Task Force members relating to suspected worker exploitation;
(3) promote the refinement of targeting methods and
best practices, and develop strategies to systemically investigate worker exploitation; and
(4) work cooperatively with labor and community
organizations, businesses and business coalitions, and other advocacy groups to increase public awareness on the underground economy in an effort to promote fairness, combat discrimination, and protect the welfare of the State.
(b) The Task Force shall consist of:
(1) the Illinois Attorney General;
(2) Assistant Attorneys General, assigned at the
discretion of the Illinois Attorney General;
(3) three elected State's Attorneys of Illinois, or
their designees, selected by the Attorney General;
(4) the Director of Labor or his or her designee;
(5) the Director of Employment Security or his or her
(6) the Director of Human Rights or his or her
(7) the chairperson of the Illinois Workers'
Compensation Commission or his or her designee.
(c) The Task Force shall elect a chairperson from its membership and shall have the authority to determine its own meeting schedule, hearing schedule, and agendas. Members of the Task Force shall serve without compensation.
(d) The Task Force shall submit a report to the Governor and the General Assembly regarding its progress no later than December 1, 2020.
(e) This Section is repealed December 1, 2021.
(Source: P.A. 101-527, eff. 1-1-20.)
(15 ILCS 205/6.5)
Sec. 6.5. Consumer Utilities Unit.
(a) The General Assembly finds that the health, welfare, and prosperity of all Illinois citizens, and the public's interest in adequate, safe, reliable, cost-effective electric, natural gas, water, cable, video, and telecommunications services, requires effective public representation by the Attorney General to protect the rights and interests of the public in the provision of all elements of electric, natural gas, water, cable, video, and telecommunications service both during and after the transition to a competitive market, and that to ensure that the benefits of competition in the provision of electric, natural gas, water, cable, video, and telecommunications services to all consumers are attained, there shall be created within the Office of the Attorney General a Consumer Utilities Unit.
(b) As used in this Section: "Electric services" means services sold by an electric service provider. "Electric service provider" shall mean anyone who sells, contracts to sell, or markets electric power, generation, distribution, transmission, or services (including metering and billing) in connection therewith. Electric service providers shall include any electric utility and any alternative retail electric supplier as defined in Section 16-102 of the Public Utilities Act.
(b-5) As used in this Section: "Telecommunications services" means services sold by a telecommunications carrier, as provided for in Section 13-203 of the Public Utilities Act. "Telecommunications carrier" means anyone who sells, contracts to sell, or markets telecommunications services, whether noncompetitive or competitive, including access services, interconnection services, or any services in connection therewith. Telecommunications carriers include any carrier as defined in Section 13-202 of the Public Utilities Act.
(b-10) As used in this Section, "natural gas services" means natural gas services sold by a "gas utility" or by an "alternative gas supplier", as those terms are defined in Section 19-105 of the Public Utilities Act.
(b-15) As used in this Section, "water services" means services sold by any corporation, company, limited liability company, association, joint stock company or association, firm, partnership, or individual, its lessees, trustees, or receivers appointed by any court and that owns, controls, operates, or manages within this State, directly or indirectly, for public use, any plant, equipment, or property used or to be used for or in connection with (i) the production, storage, transmission, sale, delivery, or furnishing of water or (ii) the treatment, storage, transmission, disposal, sale of services, delivery, or furnishing of sewage or sewage services.
(b-20) As used in this Section, "cable service and video service" means services sold by anyone who sells, contracts to sell, or markets cable services or video services pursuant to a State-issued authorization under the Cable and Video Competition Law of 2007.
(c) There is created within the Office of the Attorney General a Consumer Utilities Unit, consisting of Assistant Attorneys General appointed by the Attorney General, who, together with such other staff as is deemed necessary by the Attorney General, shall have the power and duty on behalf of the people of the State to intervene in, initiate, enforce, and defend all legal proceedings on matters relating to the provision, marketing, and sale of electric, natural gas, water, cable, video, and telecommunications service whenever the Attorney General determines that such action is necessary to promote or protect the rights and interests of all Illinois citizens, classes of customers, and users of electric, natural gas, water, cable, video, and telecommunications services.
(d) In addition to the investigative and enforcement powers available to the Attorney General, including without limitation those under the Consumer Fraud and Deceptive Business Practices Act, the Illinois Antitrust Act, and any other law of this State, the Attorney General shall be a party as a matter of right to all proceedings, investigations, and related matters involving the provision of electric, natural gas, water, cable, video, and telecommunications services before the Illinois Commerce Commission, the courts, and other public bodies. Upon request, the Office of the Attorney General shall have access to and the use of all files, records, data, and documents in the possession or control of the Commission. The Office of the Attorney General may use information obtained under this Section, including information that is designated as and that qualifies for confidential treatment, which information the Attorney General's office shall maintain as confidential, to be used for law enforcement purposes only, which information may be shared with other law enforcement officials. Nothing in this Section is intended to take away or limit any of the powers the Attorney General has pursuant to common law or other statutory law.
(Source: P.A. 99-6, eff. 6-29-15.)
(15 ILCS 205/6.6)
Sec. 6.6. Immigrant Assistance Program.
(a) Purpose and policy. The immigrant population of the State of Illinois constitutes a significant portion of the population of the State. These immigrants often require assistance in order to obtain the government services to which they are entitled under the law. It is imperative that State government is aware of the needs of the State's immigrant community and sensitive to the barriers that may prevent them from seeking and obtaining services. The Office of the Attorney General should be equipped to assist immigrants by increasing accessibility to the Office and providing outreach services to the community, which will serve to educate immigrants as to their rights and responsibilities as residents of the State.
(b) Immigrant Assistance Program. Within the Office of the Attorney General, there shall be established an Immigrant Assistance Program, which shall be charged with the responsibility of assessing the needs of the State's immigrant community with regard to access to government and other services. In addition, the Immigrant Assistance Program shall be empowered to provide education and outreach services to the immigrant community of the State, subject to funding availability. These services may include, but are not limited to, consumer issues, civil rights issues, employee rights, and other issues of particular interest to the immigrant communities in the State.
(Source: P.A. 93-464, eff. 8-8-03.)
(15 ILCS 205/7)
Sec. 7. Public Access Counselor.
(a) The General Assembly finds that members of the public have encountered obstacles in obtaining copies of public records from units of government, and that many of those obstacles result from difficulties that both members of the public and public bodies have had in interpreting and applying the Freedom of Information Act. The General Assembly further finds that members of the public have encountered difficulties in resolving alleged violations of the Open Meetings Act. The public's significant interest in access to public records and in open meetings would be better served if there were a central office available to provide advice and education with respect to the interpretation and implementation of the Freedom of Information Act and the Open Meetings Act.
(b) Therefore, there is created in the Office of the Attorney General the Office of Public Access Counselor. The Attorney General shall appoint a Public Access Counselor, who shall be an attorney licensed to practice in Illinois. The Public Access Counselor's Office shall be comprised of the Public Access Counselor and such assistant attorneys general and other staff as are deemed necessary by the Attorney General.
(c) Through the Public Access Counselor, the Attorney General shall have the power:
(1) to establish and administer a program to provide
free training for public officials and to educate the public on the rights of the public and the responsibilities of public bodies under the Freedom of Information Act and the Open Meetings Act;
(2) to prepare and distribute interpretive or
educational materials and programs;
(3) to resolve disputes involving a potential
violation of the Open Meetings Act or the Freedom of Information Act in response to a request for review initiated by an aggrieved party, as provided in those Acts, by mediating or otherwise informally resolving the dispute or by issuing a binding opinion; except that the Attorney General may not issue an opinion concerning a specific matter with respect to which a lawsuit has been filed under Section 3 of the Open Meetings Act or Section 11 of the Freedom of Information Act;
(4) to issue advisory opinions with respect to the
Open Meetings Act and the Freedom of Information Act either in response to a request for review or otherwise;
(5) to respond to informal inquiries made by the
public and public bodies;
(6) to conduct research on compliance issues;
(7) to make recommendations to the General Assembly
concerning ways to improve access to public records and public access to the processes of government;
(8) to develop and make available on the Attorney
General's website or by other means an electronic training curriculum for Freedom of Information officers;
(9) to develop and make available on the Attorney
General's website or by other means an electronic Open Meetings Act training curriculum for employees, officers, and members designated by public bodies;
(10) to prepare and distribute to public bodies model
policies for compliance with the Freedom of Information Act; and
(11) to promulgate rules to implement these powers.
(d) To accomplish the objectives and to carry out the duties prescribed by this Section, the Public Access Counselor, in addition to other powers conferred upon him or her by this Section, may request that subpoenas be issued by the Attorney General in accordance with the provisions of Section 9.5 of the Freedom of Information Act and Section 3.5 of the Open Meetings Act. Service by the Attorney General of any subpoena upon any person shall be made:
(1) personally by delivery of a duly executed copy
thereof to the person to be served, or in the case of a public body, in the manner provided in Section 2-211 of the Code of Civil Procedure; or
(2) by mailing by certified mail a duly executed copy
thereof to the person to be served at his or her last known abode or, in the case of a public body, to its principal place of business.
(e) If any person or public body fails or refuses to obey any subpoena issued pursuant to this Section, the Attorney General may file a complaint in the circuit court to:
(1) obtain compliance with the subpoena;
(2) obtain injunctive relief to prevent a violation
of the Open Meetings Act or Freedom of Information Act; and
(3) obtain such other relief as may be required.
(f) The Attorney General has the authority to file an action in the circuit court of Cook or Sangamon County for injunctive or other relief to compel compliance with a binding opinion issued pursuant to Section 3.5 of the Open Meetings Act or Section 9.5 of the Freedom of Information Act, to prevent a violation of the Open Meetings Act or the Freedom of Information Act, and for such other relief as may be required.
(g) The Attorney General shall post his or her binding opinions issued pursuant to Section 3.5 of the Open Meetings Act or Section 9.5 of the Freedom of Information Act and any rules on the official website of the Office of the Attorney General, with links to those opinions from the official home page, and shall make them available for immediate inspection in his or her office.
(Source: P.A. 96-542, eff. 1-1-10; 96-1000, eff. 7-2-10.)
(15 ILCS 205/8)
Sec. 8. Multistate Registration and Filing Portal. The Attorney General may become a member of the Multistate Registration and Filing Portal, Inc. For purposes of this Section, "Multistate Registration and Filing Portal, Inc." means an independent tax-exempt nonprofit corporation formed to develop and operate a multistate online system that will allow nonprofit organizations and their professional fundraisers to comply with all states' charity registration and annual filing requirements through a single online portal without duplication of data entry.
(Source: P.A. 100-289, eff. 8-24-17.)
(15 ILCS 205/9)
Sec. 9. Contract aspirational goals. The Attorney General shall establish aspirational goals for contract awards for all contracts for goods and services, not including contracts for services relating to investigations or litigation. These aspirational goals shall be substantially in accordance with the Business Enterprise for Minorities, Women, and Persons with Disabilities Act, unless otherwise governed by other law. The Attorney General shall not be subject to the jurisdiction of the Business Enterprise Council established under the Business Enterprise for Minorities, Women, and Persons with Disabilities Act with regard to steps taken to achieve aspirational goals. The Attorney General shall annually post information regarding the Office's utilization of businesses owned by minorities, women, and persons with disabilities during the preceding fiscal year on the Office's Internet websites.
(Source: P.A. 100-801, eff. 8-10-18.)