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What can I expect at a Building Code Violation hearing for the City of Chicago?

Chicago, IL |

I'm a landlord who owns a building in Chicago and I received building code violations for failure to repair or replace defective members of porch system and defective window panes. I received a notice of the hearing a few weeks ago. I have estimates from contractors on the cost of the repairs. That was the first time I was aware I needed the repairs done. Can anyone tell me what to expect at the hearing and is there anything I should bring with me? (i.e. estimates or anything else)? Do they typically give a deadline to have the repairs done or immediatley fine you? Any tips or information would be appreciated. Thanks in advance.

Attorney Answers 4

  1. Administrative Hearings/Buildings processes 25,000 building code violations per year. For more information, please contact: Administrative Hearings, Buildings Hearings Division, (312)742-8254.

    The hearing is your opportunity to contest any allegations and show proof that the problems were corrected. Fine will be imposed for every day of non compliance. Get the repairs done NOW

  2. You may want to contact the code enforcement office and ask them the same question, or ideally provide them with a plan for how you will come into compliance and perhaps by that avoid having a hearing altogether.

  3. Quick dawdling and make the repairs now, preferably before the hearing. Bring proof to the hearing that you have had the repairs completed -- receipts and before and after photos.

    And make sure you are represented by a competent attorney. If you don't have an attorney with experience in these matters (and I would not trust a general practitioner), call the Chicago Bar Association's Lawyer Referral Service at 312-554-2001 to identify appropriate attorneys.

    Again don't wait. I'll admit that I cannot understand why so many property owners wait until the last minute to take care of code and zoning violations.

    The information provided in the question posed is not complete enough to provide accurate legal advice. More details are needed to really guide the questioner. My response is not intended to be taken as legal advice and does not establish an attorney-client relationship.

  4. Make the rep[airs. Come to court with an attorney and proof that the repairs have been made. Perhaps the cost of the attorney will be offset by a dismissal of your violation case. In the future, keep better tabs on the condition of your building. Chicago is usually very strict about compliance.

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