6 pesron jury demand residential

Asked over 4 years ago - Chicago, IL

I was instructed by council to request a six person jury demand,I was asked by council if there was a lease ,I said no,how much was the rent ,I said 450.00 a month, how long I lived there ,I said approximately 2 years ,was I ever required to pay a late fee, I said no, and how much I owed,I said 1275.00, I was advised by council that I could get out of paying anything and get an additional month or more to move,this was legal advice from an attorney that represented people facing a possible eviction,my question is could I go to court on my own and get this accomplished without an attorney to represent me while still avoiding the eviction and move within the time granted by the court..

Attorney answers (2)

  1. John J Curry Jr

    Contributor Level 6

    Answered . Your question is whether you can successfully represent yourself in a jury trial on your eviction and breach of lease case. Although it is possible that you could successfully represent yourself in a jury trial, the courts in Chicago will strictly bind you to the rules of procedure that apply to conducting jury trials. Unfortunately, there are many such rules and some you may find complicated. Therefore the odds of you properly educating yourself on conducting a jury trial and succeeding in the case would be pretty low. Of course, people in your position have succeeded, but the overall number is quite small. Moreover, you would have to consider the possibility that a jury might not sympathize with you and that a jury might rule against you regardless of the strengths of your case -- that in fact happens every day in every court.

    One suggestion to consider is that you waive (or give up) your right to a jury trial and bring your defense before the judge alone, in what is called a bench trial. If you have any facts that operate in your favor, you may find the judge sympathetic (many of them in housing court are) and even if you lose, you may be given additional time to leave the premises and pay any outstanding amount due. Or you may even win your case.

  2. John J Curry Jr

    Contributor Level 6

    Answered . I am sorry but I neglected to make one more suggestion. You should prepare yourself for your defense by contacting any one of several tenants organizations in Chicago. You may be able to find some helpful information on line from either www.renters-rights.com or www.tenants.org.

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