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What Laws Have Changed for Illinois Residents in 2021?

Published on Feb 12, 2021 at 10:24 am in Legal Information.

Statue of woman holding justice scales

Illinois representatives work all year to find ways to improve the lives of residents. When they have new laws to implement, residents may expect them to occur at the start of the new year. New laws and law changes have taken place since 2021 began.

Knowing these law changes will mean you’re up to date on your rights and what is happening in your state. You can help others know their rights as well. Let’s look into what law changes Illinois residents have seen so far in 2021.

Votes on Proposed Law Changes

There was a proposed change that would alter how Illinois taxes its residents. Currently, the state has a flat rate tax, which means everyone pays the same rate regardless of their income. The tax rate is 4.95%. During the past election there was a vote on whether or not to change this. The proposed tax plan had support from the state governor, J.B. Pritzker.

The new plan for income tax would change it to a graduated plan. This would mean the level of taxes someone pays raises with the more income they make. So, people and businesses who making more income than others would pay more in taxes than those who make less.

The Lt. Governor Juliana Stratton also supported this bill because the current plan is outdated, and a graduated tax plan would mean those making millions and billions would pay their fair share. She added that if this plan is opposed, every Illinois resident may see an increase in taxes up to 20% in the future. If everyone’s taxes were raised by this much, it would go from 4.95% to 5.94%.

For those who make less than $250,000, they could likely pay the 4.95%. The governor said about 97% of residents would either pay about the same tax rate or less for their state income tax.

Changing the tax plan had plenty of opposition as well. Others argued that this plan wasn’t fair and that those in power only want to raise taxes.

After the election, Illinois residents voted on the issue and the proposed plan was rejected. Those who opposed the bill said this would benefit the middle-class families, small business owners, and more. They also believe this is a response to two tax hikes in the past decade, even though Illinois still has an $8 billion deficit.

Even though this plan was rejected and will not go into effect, lawmakers will continue to search for ways to generate revenue for Illinois. There may be new proposals during this year.

Illinois Law Changes

Another law involving income is the ongoing plan to increase minimum wage. This began in 2020, when the minimum wage increased from $9.25 to $10 an hour. The minimum wage went up again in January 2021, where the wage increased to $11 per hour.

This is all part of a plan to raise the minimum wage in Illinois to $15 per hour by January 2025.

Illinois New Laws

A new law regarding discrimination claims that began in 2020 also sets rules for 2021. As of this year, employers needed to submit reports on final, adverse judgments, or administrative rulings against them in discrimination or sexual harassment issues to the Illinois Department of Human Rights by October 1, 2020. This is for matters that occurred during 2019.

In 2021, this will need to happen by July 1 for the previous year. In the years after, employers will have until July 1 to submit the reports to the Illinois Department of Human Rights for the previous year.

Now that you know what laws have been implemented so far in 2021, you may have a better idea of what kinds of bills will be proposed for the rest of the year in Illinois. In regard to matters like the rejected tax plan, you may expect further response to it. Illinois lawmakers will still need a way to look into bringing revenue into the state. The Lt. Governor did say that Illinois residents may all see a tax hike if the tax plan was rejected.

Following the proposals of the state government will allow you to know that direction they’re trying to take in leading the state and you’ll be aware of the possible upcoming changes.

Schweickert Ganassin Krzak Rundio, LLP is committed to staying current with Illinois law so we can protect the rights of Morris residents and the residents of the greater Illinois area. If you have any questions, you can reach out to us here.

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