Eviction and rental assistance resources in Illinois

A PDF version of this guide is available here (español).

Since August 1, 2021, landlords have been able to file for eviction for nonpayment of rent. On October 3, 2021, the State of Illinois began enforcing evictions. However, if you are struggling with your rent or are facing eviction, Illinois has a wide variety of resources to help you stay in your home.

Covid-19 Rental Assistance through the Illinois Rental Payment Program (ILRPP)

The ILRPP is for renters in Illinois who are having trouble making their rent payments due to financial hardship during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Who is eligible:

  1. You are a renter in Illinois
  2. Your household experienced financial hardship directly, or indirectly, due to the pandemic.
  3. Your household is behind on rent and/or is at risk of experiencing homelessness or housing instability.
  4. You meet the program income requirements for your County of residence.

More information available here.

How to Apply:

If Illinois Rental Payment Program (ILRPP) is accepting applications, you can apply for rental assistance through the IHDA portal. If IHDA is not accepting applications, you can apply for rental assistance through an IDHS Service Provider Agency. You can find your local IDHS agency here.

For Chicago and Cook County Residents you can apply for rental assistance through All Chicago.

What you need:

If possible, you should provide your local IDHS agency the following documents to assist in processing your application:

  • Proof of income
  • Lease agreements
  • Rental arrears statements

Illinois Court-Based Rental Assistance Program

The Illinois Court-Based Rental Assistance Program is for those who have received notice of a Court-Eviction Proceeding and need financial help to stay in their home.

Who is Eligible:

  • Tenant must be in a court-eviction proceeding and provide eviction court documentation.
  • Household must have experienced a financial hardship directly — or indirectly — due to the pandemic.
  • The household is behind on rent and/ or is at risk of experiencing homelessness or housing instability.
  • 2020 household income was below 80% of the Area Median Income (AMI), adjusted for household size.
  • Proof of citizenship is not required. Rental assistance is not a “public- charge” benefit.

How to apply:

In Cook County contact Cook County Legal Aid or call 855-956-5763. Outside of Cook County visit ilrpp.ihda.org.

What you need:

  • Government-issued photo ID
  • Tenant & household information proof of address
  • Proof of household income
  • Rent details and amount past due
  • Proof of public assistance, if applicable
  • Valid email address
  • Eviction court document (court-summons document)

Your landlord is responsible for completing the Program with you.

Short Term Homelessness Prevention

Emergency financial assistance from state, municipal, county, and private funds are available to Chicago residents to prevent or end homelessness among eligible individuals and families who are facing a short-term financial crisis. Programs may offer up to six months of mortgage and rent arrears, future payments, utility assistance, security deposits and application fees.

Who is eligible:

  • Illinois residents in imminent danger of eviction, homelessness, or foreclosure or that are currently experiencing homelessness.
  • These households must document the ability to afford rent and utilities in the future without assistance.
  • All households must be able to document a temporary economic crisis beyond their control, including:
    • Loss of employment
    • Medical disability or emergency
    • Loss or delay of a public benefit
    • Natural disaster
    • Other conditions constituting a hardship comparable to the crises above

How to apply:

  • Call 3-1-1 and request “short-term help” or “rental assistance”
  • A case Manager will review your qualifications and determine if funds are available.
  • When funds are available and you qualify, you are connected with the funding agency. When they aren’t available, you are given the option of calling back the next day.

What you need:

  • Lease in the City or County from which you are requesting aide
  • Documentation showing ability to afford rent and utilities in the future without assistance
  • Documentation of a temporary economic crisis

Need Help Understanding Your Rights?

If you have a question about your rights as a renter in Chicago please reach out to the Chicago Renters’ Rights Hotline at 312.742.RENT (312.742.7368) or visit their website.

Need Legal Help with an Eviction?

If you are facing an eviction or need immediate help with your housing, visit evictionhelpillinois.org or call 1-844-938-4280 to speak with a free pro bono lawyer. You can also visit rentervention.com to get free legal resources to help you keep your home.