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Legal Department FAQ

Q: How do I complain about a barking dog or a dog running loose?
A: The City has a contract with Winnebago County Animal Services, or phone them at (815) 319-4100.

Q: Where do I register to vote? Where do I vote?
A: Voter registration is handled by the Rockford Board of Elections, or call: (815) 987-5750.

Q: How do I report discrimination at the workplace?
A: Call (312) 814-6200 or visit the website for the Illinois Department of Human Rights.

Q: How do I obtain a State of Illinois Liquor License?
A: The City of Rockford is not involved in State Liquor Licensing. Please visit the Illinois Liquor Control Commission or phone them at (312) 814-2206.

Q: Who collects taxes for the City and County?
A: The City of Rockford Department of law is not responsible for collecting taxes. Please visit the site for the Winnebago County Treasurer’s Office or call (815) 319-4400.

Q: How do I find out about my next court date?
A: You can check online here.

Q: How do I report the company who illegally towed my car from a private lot?
A: The City of Rockford does not handle towing company complaints. The Illinois Commerce Commission site handles regulations and complaints regarding vehicles towed from private lots. They can also be reached at 800-524-0795.

Q: How do I obtain a raffle license?
A: The City of Rockford Department of Law does not issue raffle licenses. Call 815-319-4250 or visit the Winnebago County Clerk site. The City of Rockford has an agreement with the County Clerk to handle raffle licenses throughout Winnebago County.

Q: Where can I get a new marriage license? or just a copy of it?
A: The City of Rockford Department of Law does not maintain marriage licenses. If you were married in Winnebago County, call the Winnebago County Clerk at 815-319-4250.

Q: Where can I get a copy of my birth certificate or my child’s?
A: The City of Rockford Department of Law does not maintain birth certificates. If you were born in Winnebago County, call 815-319-4250 or click Winnebago County Clerk. If you were not born in Winnebago County, you should be able to obtain your birth certificate from the County in which you were born.

Q: I need an attorney for a private matter (divorce, alimony, child support, a civil lawsuit, neighborhood dispute). Can the City represent me?
A: The City of Rockford Department of Law, by ordinance, may only represent City of Rockford officials and employees in their formal capacity. We cannot provide legal advice to the general public. The Winnebago County Bar Association has a lawyer referral site to assist in the selection of a private attorney.

Q: Who do I call about a City liquor or tobacco license?
A: For liquor or tobacco licenses within the City of Rockford, please call Shelia Alexander at 779-348-7383. For information about State of Illinois liquor licenses, call the Illinois State Liquor Control Commission at 312-814-2206 or visit their website.

Q: Where can I find the City’s Code of Ordinances?
A: Copies of the City of Rockford Code of Ordinances can be found online here, in the Department of Law’s main office on the 7th floor of City Hall, in the Winnebago County Law Library, and at the main branch of the Rockford Public Library. Copies of the zoning ordinance can be found here, or in the Zoning Office on the first floor of City Hall. Copies of various building codes can be found here or on the first floor of City Hall. The Traffic Division of Public Works on the fifth floor of City Hall maintains a record of traffic ordinances and schedules. The Fire Prevention Bureau maintains a copy of the fire and life safety codes at 204 S. First Street. For general information on city laws, contact (779) 348-7154.

Q: What are the responsibilities of the Department of Law?
A: The Department of Law acts as legal counsel to the City of Rockford, its’ elected officials, officers and employees (in their official capacity). The responsibilities of the department include: general legal advice to the City Council and all City Departments, litigation support, annexation support, contract drafting and review, ordinance, resolution, and committee report drafting and review and municipal code violation enforcement. The Department also processes liquor licenses for the Mayor’s office. Staff provide land acquisition services for various city departments and projects. The Legal Director serves as ex-officio City Clerk and Keeper of the Records for the City of Rockford. The department also houses the City Council Clerk and is the repository of official city records.

Q: What is the phone number for the Department of Law?
A: The Main Office phone number is (779) 348-7154.

Q: Where is the Department of Law located?
A: The Department of Law’s main office is on the 7th floor of City Hall, 425 E. State Street in downtown Rockford.

Q: Do I need a permit to protest in Rockford?
A: No. However, a large, organized protest may need to consider a special events permit, which may be found by clicking on the link on this page.

Q: My car was damaged by a pothole. How do I file a claim against the City?:
A: View our Claims page.

Q: Where do I pay my traffic (speeding) ticket?
A: Clerk of the Circuit Court, Winnebago County Courthouse, Room 108, 400 West State Street, Rockford, IL 61101 or click here.

Q: What is the phone number for the Public Defender’s office?
A: (815) 319-4900 or click here.

Q: Where do I make a claim for an accident with a City vehicle?
A: Here.

Q: How do I report damage from a snowplow to my mailbox or other property?
A: Here.

Q: How do I report a mowing or weeds violation?
A: Click here.

Q: How do I report a garbage violation?
A: Click here.

Q: How do I determine who owns property in the City of Rockford?

A:  Click here.

 Q: What are the rules for political campaign signs in the City? 

A:  Click here.