Illinois Compiled Statutes 765 ILCS 45 Destroyed Public Records Act. Section 23

    (765 ILCS 45/23) (from Ch. 116, par. 27)

    Sec. 23. In all cases under the provisions of this Act, and in all proceedings or actions now or hereafter instituted as to any estate, interest or right in, or any lien or incumbrance upon any lots, pieces or parcels of land, when any party to such action or proceeding, or his agent or attorney in his behalf, orally in court, or by affidavit, to be filed in such action or proceeding, testifies and states under oath that the original of any deeds, conveyances, or other written or record evidence, has been lost or destroyed, or not in the power of the party wishing to use it on the trial to produce the same, and the record thereof has been destroyed by fire or otherwise, the court shall receive all such evidence as may have a bearing on the case to establish the execution or contents of the deeds, conveyances, records, or other written evidence, so lost or destroyed, but the testimony of the parties themselves shall be received subject to all the qualifications in respect of such testimony which are now provided by law, and any writings in the possession of any person or persons which may become admissible in evidence, under the provision of this Section or of any other part of this Act, shall be rejected and not be admitted in evidence unless the same appears upon its face without erasure, blemish, alteration, interlineation or interpolation in any material part, unless the same is explained to the satisfaction of the court, and to have been fairly and honestly made in the ordinary course of business. Any person or persons making any such erasure, alteration, interlineation or interpolation, in such writing, with the intent to change the same in any substantial matter, after the same has been once made as above stated, shall be guilty of the crime of forgery, and be punished accordingly. Any person or persons who is or are engaged in the business of making writings or written entries concerning or relating to lands and real estate, in any county in this State to which this Act applies, and of furnishing to persons applying therefor abstracts and copies of such writings or written entries, for a fee, reward or compensation therefor, and do not make the same truly and without alteration or interpolation, in any matter of substance, with the view and intent to alter or change the same in any material matter, or matter of substance, shall be guilty of the crime of forgery, and punished accordingly; and any and all such person or persons shall furnish such abstracts or copies to the person and persons from time to time applying therefor, in the order of applications and without unnecessary delay, and for a reasonable consideration to be allowed therefor, which in no case shall exceed the sum of $1.50 for each and every conveyance, or other like change of title, shown upon such abstract or copy; and any and all persons so engaged, and whose business is hereby declared to stand upon a like footing with that of common carriers, who refuses so to do, if tender or payment is made to him or them of the amount demanded for such abstract or copy, not exceeding the amount provided in this Act, as soon as such amount is made known, or ascertained, or of a sum adequate to cover such amount, before its ascertainment, shall be guilty of the crime of extortion, and punished by a fine of not less than $100, and not exceeding $1,000 therefor, upon indictment in the circuit court, and shall also be liable in a civil action for any and all damages, loss or injury, which any person or persons applying therefor may suffer or incur by reason of such failure to furnish such abstract or copy as provided in this Act.

(Source: P.A. 84-550.)

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Last modified: February 18, 2015