There are several ways to initiate an appeal from the Illinois Appellate Court to the Illinois Supreme Court. You can petition the Illinois Supreme Court for leave to appeal under Illinois Supreme Court Rule 315; you can appeal to the Illinois Supreme Court on certificate under Illinois Supreme Court Rule 316 or you can appeal to the Illinois Supreme Court as of right under Illinois Supreme Court Rule 317. Following is a brief explanation of each Rule:
Petitioning Under Rule 315
Once a petition for leave to appeal is filed under Rule 315, it is up to the court’s discretion as to whether it will be granted. A petition can be filed in any case not appealable from the Appellate Court as a matter of right. A petition for leave to appeal must be filed within 35 days of the entry of judgment in the Appellate Court or within 35 days after the entry of an order denying a petition for rehearing.
Rule 316: Appealing on Certificate
To appeal to the Illinois Supreme Court on certificate, you must file an application for a certificate of importance with the Appellate Court. This can be accomplished either by filing the application or including the application in a petition for rehearing. In order to be successful, the Appellate Court must certify that the case involves a question of such importance that the Illinois Supreme Court should decide it. The timing of filing the application is within 35 days after the judgment is entered if a petition for rehearing is not filed and within 14 days after the petition for rehearing is denied or the judgment on rehearing is entered.
Rule 317: Appealing as of Right
The final method of appeal to the Illinois Supreme Court from the Illinois Appellate Court falls under Rule 317. This type of appeal is known as an appeal as a matter of right because the case involves a United States or Illinois statute that has been held to be invalid or a question of either the United States or the Illinois State Constitution has been raised as a result of action of the Appellate Court. The procedure for filing this type of appeal is to generally follow the form set forth under Rule 315. Therefore, a petition for leave to appeal should be filed which matches the form set forth under Rule 315 with the following exceptions: item 1 should state the appeal is taken as a matter of right instead of setting forth a prayer for leave to appeal and item 5 should contain argument as to why appeal lies as a matter of right to the Illinois Supreme Court.
To appeal from the Illinois Appellate Court to the Illinois Supreme Court, you must determine which rule applies to the specifics of your case. Once you have done that, you must simply navigate the requirements under the applicable rule to ensure a rule-compliant filing.
Should you have any questions regarding the Illinois Appellate and Supreme Courts’ rules and procedures, please do not hesitate to contact me directly. My colleagues and I at Counsel Press’ office in Chicago specialize in the rule-compliant appellate filings in the Illinois Appellate Court (all districts), Illinois Supreme Court, United States Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit, United States Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit, United States Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit, Wisconsin Court of Appeals and Supreme Court and Indiana Court of Appeals and Supreme Court.