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What does "Leave to Refile-Allowed" mean?

Chicago, IL |

I was a pro se plaintiff in a breach of contract civil action. I had to move to dismiss because of family problems and inability to attend two hearings. The judge granted my motion and the electronic docket says: VOLUNTARY DISMISSAL W/LEAVE TO REFILE-ALLOWED. I do wish to re-file at a later date.

Does the leave to re-file mean that I can re-file under the same case number and not have to pay a filing fee again, or is it just saying that I am allowed to re-sue in the way I would a normal lawsuit, or does it mean something else? Thank you in advance.

This is Cook County Circuit Court.

Attorney Answers 3


  1. Best answer

    It means that you voluntarily dismissed the case and the dismissal was not with prejudice. That means the suit can be refiled. It would be a new case with a new case number and you will have to pay the filing fee and the fee to serve the complaint again. I would note hat you should consider hiring a lawyer. A lawyer would attend and schedule court proceedings to eliminate scheduling conflicts.


  2. The docket statement means that you have permission to refile a new case if you would like to do so. You would have to pay a new filing fee. You are not required to refile.


  3. It means that your suit was dismissed WITHOUT prejudice, as opposed to WITH prejudice [in which case you suit would be dead]

    You likely did not plead the elements of a breact of contract properly--did not allege specific fact in support of offer, acceptance & consideration.

    I'd advise you to be cautious--if you continue to make these mistakes the Court can strike and dismiss with prejudice, even if you may hypothetically have a viable lawsuit.

    The author provides the preceding information as a service to the public. Author's response, as stated above, should not be considered legal advice. An initial attorney-client conference, based upon review of all relevant facts/documents, will be necessary to provide legal advice upon which the client should then rely.