Condo Law Watch

Boards Must Move Quickly to Rent Units Pursuant to Collection Forcible Orders in 2015

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The relevant provisions of the Illinois Forcible Entry and Detainer code provisions governing collection actions for unpaid assessments will change in the new year.  Specifically, the Forcible Entry and Detainer Statute has been amended to create an eight month cut-off for commencing to rent out a unit pursuant to a forcible entry and detainer (eviction) judgment. This means that boards must start renting a unit in possession with eight months of the expiration of the stay of enforcement.  Failure to do so may result in the association being precluded from renting, absent further relief from a court.  Courts may be willing to extend this eight month timeline but it would need to be for some good reason shown to the court. There is no case law on whether savvy owners who file various motions to slow the eviction process could benefit from this cut-off or use it strategically to avoid eviction.

(735 ILCS 5/9-111.1)

Sec. 9-111.1. Lease to bona fide tenant. Upon the entry of a judgment in favor of a board of managers for possession of property under the Condominium Property Act, as provided in Section 9-111 of this Act, and upon delivery of possession of the premises by the sheriff or other authorized official to the board of managers pursuant to execution upon the judgment, the board of managers shall have the right and authority, incidental to the right of possession of a unit under the judgment, but not the obligation, to lease the unit to a bona fide tenant (whether the tenant is in occupancy or not) pursuant to a written lease for a term which may commence at any time within 8 months after the month in which the date of expiration of the stay of judgment occurs. The term may not to exceed 13 months from the date of commencement of the lease.  The expiration of the stay of judgment unless extended by order of court may, upon motion of the board of managers and with notice to the dispossessed unit owner, permit or extend a lease for one or more additional terms not to exceed 13 months per term. The board of managers shall first apply all rental income  to assessments and other charges sued upon in the action for possession plus statutory interest on a monetary judgment, if any, attorneys’ fees, and court costs incurred; and then to other expenses lawfully agreed upon (including late charges),  any fines and reasonable expenses necessary to make the unit rentable, and lastly to assessments accrued thereafter until  assessments are current. Any surplus shall be remitted to the  unit owner. The court shall retain jurisdiction to determine the reasonableness of the expense of making the unit rentable.

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