SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (CN) – Gov. Pat Quinn signed into law a Judicial Privacy Improvement Act, allowing Illinois judges to ask that their personal information be removed from websites and other public documents.
The Michael Lefkow and Donna Humphrey Judicial Privacy Improvement Act of 2012 defines personal information as judges’ home addresses, telephone numbers, personal email addresses, Social Security numbers, federal tax identification numbers, checking and savings account numbers, credit card numbers, marital status and the identification of minor children.
The law lets judges ask that personal information released in public records requests be redacted. Starting next Jan. 1, judges can request that their office address be used instead of their home address on state identification cards and driver’s licenses.
Agencies and businesses are not required to adhere to the law unless they have received a written request from a judge.
Any person who unlawfully publishes a judge’s personal information that leads to that judge’s bodily harm or death, or to that of the judge’s immediate family members, could be charged with a Class 3 felony.
The measure is named after U.S. District Judge Joan Lefkow’s husband and mother, both of whom were fatally shot in 2005. Police believe Michael Lefkow and Donna Humphrey were victims of retaliation after Joan Lefkow dismissed a medical malpractice lawsuit.