Posted on: July 27th, 2012

Chicago Tribune Reporter, Hal Dardick, reported on June 3, 2012, that Cook County expects to accomplish something that they have not been able to do so since the Carter Administration – mail out second installment real estate tax bills on time!  Assessor Berrios and the local taxing bodies have worked together to accomplish this feat with initial property assessments coming out approximately 4 months earlier than they have in recent memory and the tax Board of Review having considered over 300,000 appeals with additional increased efficiency.  This expected to save many local governmental entities, dependent upon the annual tax revenue, tens of millions of dollars across Cook County.

Traditionally, as real estate lawyers, we explain to clients, especially purchasers, that Illinois real estate taxes are paid one year in arrears, and in virtually all of the counties outside Cook County, the taxes are calculated in the spring and issued by May 1st and due in two equal installments, payable by June 1st and September 1st,  (or the first business day in June and September).

Then there is Cook County, and these real estate taxes are issued in two installments also, but the first is issued March 1st (first business day in March), representing 55% of the prior year’s tax amount and then the current calculations are done and the second installment created sometime thereafter.  The second installment bill has come out as late as October 1st, and due one month later.  The first installment used to be 50% of the prior year’s taxes, but with 2nd installments taking longer and longer to come out, the county increased the first installment to be the 55% to make more revenue available sooner.

Currently, it is anticipated that second installment Cook County taxes will be posted July 1, 2012, and will accordingly be due on August 1, 2012.  For updated information as these dates approach, and at any time to check on the status of your particular property’s tax bill or tax assessment, you can access the Cook County Treasurer’s and Supervisor of Assessor’s websites as follows: and

As a reminder, for the collar counties outside Cook, the first installment of the 2011 real estate taxes were due June 1st  and the second installments are due Tuesday, September 4th, because of Labor Day.  Links to many of the local county treasurer and assessor websites can be found on our Resource Tab..

Joan Brady