New Illinois Laws for 2013

With a New Year comes new laws; One-hundred-and-fifty new laws for Illinois to be exact. I am highlighting ten that I think are the most interesting and relevant, and here are the weird ones. (Also check out my top ten political stories of 2012.)

  1. Telephone Billing Ban (HB 5211/PA 97‐822): Prohibits “phone cramming,” which is when people are solicited for free trials or coupons, then later billed but never told they were buying a service.
  2. Underage Drinking Parent Penalties (HB1554/PA 97‐1049): It now a crime to allow underage drinking at a parent’s (guardian’s) house, but any other property of the parent or guardian.
  3. Gift Certificate (HB 4689/PA 97‐954): Gift certificates now include credit slips issued when a customer returns products back to the store. The slip is only good if it allows the customer to obtain other products of similar value.
  4. Facebook/Social Media Privacy (HB3782/PA 97‐875): Employers cannot request from current or prospective employees any and all social media account information.
  5. Terms of Divorce (SB 2569/PA 97‐941): There are now specific timetables that must be adhered to regarding child support expenses like child care and education.
  6. Wiretaps (HB 4081/PA 97‐846): Law enforcement officers (and other applicable personnel) can obtain an order from the State Attorney instead of the court. This is only applicable during the investigation of a felony drug violation, and the person wiretapping must be part of the conversation.
  7. Public Benefit Corporations (SB 2897/PA97‐885): Companies can now become "benefit corporations," a mix between non‐profits and corporations. The purpose of their profits is to further a public benefit.
  8. Social Services (SB 278/PA 97‐1077): This law makes the Illinois Human Services Commission permanent. It is a government‐sponsored body that advocates for state funding for social services.
  9. First‐Time Offenders (SB 3423/PA 97‐889): It's no longer just pot smokers let off the hook for minor drug offenses. Now first-time offenders caught with 15 grams (or less) of methamphetamine get treatment in a drug abuse program instead of a prison term.
  10. Non‐Violent Offenders (SB 3349/PA 97‐1118): Instead of prison for non-violent felony offenders (i.e. forgery, retail theft, cannabis possession, etc.) there is now a voluntary 12‐month diversion program.

Filed under: Politics

Tags: 2013, new laws

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