By Karen Kies DeGrand, Donohue Brown Mathewson & Smyth LLC
As the Illinois Supreme Court moves the state toward electronic filing, here the court implicitly acknowledged the continuing relevance of the “mailbox rule.” The issue arose in the context of obtaining circuit court review of a decision of the Illinois Workers’ Compensation Commission. The supreme court interpreted section 19(f)(1) of the statute and held that mailing the requisite documents commences circuit court review and satisfies the strict statutory compliance needed to vest subject matter jurisdiction in the circuit court. See Workers’ Compensation Act, 820 ILCS 305/19(f)(1) (West 2008). Thus, mailing the documents within 20 days, rather than obtaining file-stamped documents by the clerk within that time frame, “commenced” the action under the statute.