Supreme Court of Illinois

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Illinois Supreme Court
Seal of the Supreme Court of Illinois.svg
Seal of the Supreme Court of Illinois
Established1818 (1818)[1]
LocationSpringfield, Illinois
Coordinates39°47′53″N 89°39′10″W / 39.797928°N 89.652724°W / 39.797928; -89.652724Coordinates: 39°47′53″N 89°39′10″W / 39.797928°N 89.652724°W / 39.797928; -89.652724
MottoLatin: Audi Alteram Partem
Hear the other side
Composition methodPartisan election
Authorized byIllinois Constitution
Appeals toSupreme Court of the United States
Judge term length10 years
Number of positions7
WebsiteOfficial website
Chief Justice
CurrentlyAnne M. Burke
SinceOctober 25, 2019 (2019-10-25)

The Supreme Court of Illinois is the state supreme court, the highest court of the State of Illinois. The court's authority is granted in Article VI of the current Illinois Constitution, which provides for seven justices elected from the five appellate judicial districts of the state: three justices from the First District (Cook County) and one from each of the other four districts. Each justice is elected for a term of ten years[2] and the chief justice is elected by the court from its members for a three-year term.


The court has limited original jurisdiction and has final appellate jurisdiction. It has jurisdiction in cases where the constitutionality of laws has been called into question, and discretionary jurisdiction from the Illinois Appellate Court. Until 2011, when Illinois abolished the death penalty, it had mandatory jurisdiction in capital cases. Along with the state legislature, the court promulgates rules for all state courts. Also, its members have the authority to elevate trial judges to the appellate court on a temporary basis.[3] The court administers professional discipline through the Attorney Registration and Disciplinary Committee and it governs initial licensing through the Illinois Board of Admissions to the Bar.

The official reporter of the Illinois Supreme Court is Illinois Reports.


Old map of the five districts of the Supreme Court of Illinois (1963-2021)
Illinois supreme court new map

The Illinois Supreme Court is separated into 5 districts, with one Justice elected from each except the 1st, which elects three Justices. They are separated by county lines, as follows. As of 2018 Census estimates, the populations of the old districts are: 1st District: 5,194,000; 2nd District: 3,189,000; 3rd District: 1,805,000; 4th District 1,320,000; 5th District: 1,321,000.

These districts were established in 1963 and had not been updated in nearly sixty years, despite the Illinois Constitution's requirement that the four districts outside Cook County have "substantially equal population". The state legislature redrew districts these in 2021 to take effect in the 2022 elections, Illinois Governor J.B. Pritzker signed these changes into law.[4]

Below are the counties per district as was the case with the old districts. Only the first district has remained the same.

1st district[edit]

2nd district[edit]

3rd district[edit]

4th district[edit]

5th district[edit]


Illinois Supreme Court, Springfield, Illinois

While the justices of many states' supreme courts are expected to relocate to the state capital for the duration of their terms of office, the justices of the Illinois Supreme Court continue to reside in their home constituencies and have chambers in their respective appellate districts (for example, the three First District justices are chambered in the Michael Bilandic Building in Chicago). The justices travel to Springfield to hear oral arguments and deliberate. Accordingly, the Illinois Supreme Courthouse includes temporary apartments for the justices' use while in Springfield.

Current justices[edit]

District Justice Born Party Joined Term ends College Law school
1st Anne M. Burke (Chief Justice) (1944-02-03) February 3, 1944 (age 78) Democratic 2006 2028 DePaul Chicago-Kent
Mary Jane Theis (1949-02-27) February 27, 1949 (age 73) Democratic 2010 2022 Loyola Chicago San Francisco
P. Scott Neville Jr. 1948/1949 (age 73–74) Democratic 2018 2030 Culver–Stockton College WashU
2nd Michael J. Burke (1958-10-28) October 28, 1958 (age 63) Republican 2020 2022 Northern Illinois John Marshall
3rd Robert L. Carter 1945/1946 (age 75–76) Democratic 2020 2022 Illinois Illinois
4th Rita B. Garman (1943-11-14) November 14, 1943 (age 78) Republican 2001 2022 Illinois Iowa
5th David K. Overstreet (1966-01-14) January 14, 1966 (age 56) Republican 2020 2030 Lipscomb Tennessee

Previous justices[edit]




See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Judicial System". Retrieved 2018-12-22.
  2. ^ "Courts in Illinois". Illinois Supreme Court.
  3. ^ Appellate Court Act (705 ILCS 25/1(d)). Retrieved 2010-04-07.
  4. ^ MANSUR, SARAH (2021-05-25). "Dems release proposal for new Supreme Court district maps". Daily Herald. Retrieved 2021-06-01.


  • List of Supreme Court Justices from Supreme Court's website
  • Scammon, J. Young (1841). Illinois Reports v. 1 (2 ed.). Chicago: Gale & Burley.
  • Gilman, Charles; Russell H. Curtis (1886). Illinois Reports v. 10. Chicago: Callaghan & Co.
  • Peck, E. (1856). Illinois Reports v. 16. Chicago: D. B. Cooke & Co.
  • Peck, E. (1869). Illinois Reports v. 16 (2 ed.). St. Louis: W. J. Gilbert.
  • Peck, E. (1858). Illinois Reports v. 19. Chicago: D. B. Cooke & Co.
  • Ewell, Marshall D. Illinois Reports v. 33.
  • Freeman, Norman L. (1866). Illinois Reports v. 44. Callaghan & Co.

External links[edit]