Frequently Asked Questions

 

Q. Whom can I contact regarding Social Security disability payments?

A. The Social Security disability program provides benefits to persons with severe disabilities whose injuries prevent them from performing gainful work. Disability determination is the only Social Security program handled by a state government office. Requests for additional information may be directed to: Ann P. Robert, Deputy Director, Bureau of Disability Determination Services, Department of Human Services, PO Box 19250, Springfield, IL 62794-9250. Or call 1-800-225-3607. You may also contact your Congressman. To find out whom your U.S. Congressman is visit www.writerep.house.gov.

Q. Does Illinois still have a Department of Public Aid?

A. Illinois has the Department of Healthcare and Family Services, formerly the Department of Public Aid, the state agency dedicated to improving the lives of Illinois' families through health care coverage, child support enforcement and energy assistance. Through the website, www.hfs.illinois.gov , multiple agencies and programs may be reached. The department can also be reached by calling (217) 782-1200.

Q. Where can I go to find out more about All Kids and learn whether or not my family is covered?

A. Illinois is the first state in the nation to provide affordable, comprehensive health insurance for all children, regardless of their financial status. Of the 253,000 children in Illinois without health insurance, more than half come from working and middle class families who earn too much to qualify for state programs like KidCare, but not enough to afford private health insurance. To receive coverage, parents need to sign up and pay monthly premiums. To learn more, visit http://www.allkidscovered.com or contact your State Representative.

Q. What is happening to SeniorCare and Circuit Breaker?

A. On January 1, 2006, SeniorCare and Circuit Breaker were combined to form Illinois Cares Rx, a new program to help Illinois residents pay for prescriptions. To read more about this new state program, find specific answers to your questions, and learn about current state pharmaceutical assistance programs in Illinois, visit http://www.illinoiscaresrx.com. Your State Representatives appreciate the difficulty these new programs may cause so please contact them for additional help.

Q. What is Medicare Part D?

A. Medicare Part D is a federal program that offers various types of prescription drug coverage for eligible seniors. In late fall 2005, all people receiving Medicare should have received information about this new federal benefit including the plans available in their area. They were asked to choose from several different prescription drug plans before the new requirements took effect. Please visit http://www.hfs.illinois.gov/pharmacies/120905partd.html to learn more and to choose a plan that is right for you.    

Q. Where can I get more information about the Medicare prescription drug coverage and the state-funded programs?

A. For more information about the Medicare prescription drug program, call the Senior Health Insurance Program (SHIP) toll-free in Illinois at 1-800-548-9034. SHIP, sponsored by the Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation, is a statewide health insurance counseling service for Medicare consumers of all ages. SHIP is not affiliated with any insurance company and volunteer counselors do not sell or solicit any type of insurance.

Q. How can I apply for a Firearm Owner’s Identification (FOID) card?

A. All Illinois residents who buy or possess firearms are required by law to have a valid FOID card. FOID applications can be obtained from any firearm's dealer, law enforcement agency, or printed from the Internet. To obtain a FOID card, complete an application and mail it in, along with a $10.00 fee and a photograph to: Illinois State Police, FOID, PO Box 19233, Springfield, IL 62794-9233. You may download an application at http://www.isp.state.il.us/foid/.

Q. Where can I find out how to get help with rising utility costs?

A. The Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP) is designed to help eligible low-income households pay for winter energy services. The amount of the benefit is determined by income, household size, fuel type and geographic location. Their website, http://www.liheapillinois.com/, will provide you with more details.  

Q. What services are available through the Department on Aging Community Care Program?

A. The Community Care Program is designed to help seniors maintain independence in their homes rather than being placed in nursing homes. Case management, homemaker and adult day services are available. Contact the Senior Help Line at 1-800-252-8966 for more information.

Q. Whom can I contact for help with a worker's compensation claim?

A. Contact the Industrial Commission at 1-866-352-3033 or www.state.il.us/agency/iic/.  

Q. Whom can I contact with complaints about Elder Abuse?

A. Please call the Senior Help Line at 1-866-800-1409 or contact your State Representative.  

Q. Whom can I contact to report a suspected case of child abuse?

A. Call 1-800-25ABUSE. (800-252-2873)  

Q. How can I obtain background information on any reported child abuse or neglect incidents for a daycare in my community?

A. Call the Daycare Hotline at 1-877-746-0829.  

Q. Where can I find information regarding TANF (Temporary Assistance for Needy Families), AABD (Aid to the Aged, Blind, or Disabled), Medicare, child care, substance abuse, and developmental disabilities services?

A. The Department of Human Services offers assistance programs in all of the above areas. Information is located on the Department’s web site at www.dhs.state.il.us or call 1-800-843-6154.  

Q. Where can I find information about fishing and hunting licenses?

A. Fishing and Hunting license information can be found at the Department of Natural Resources web site at www.dnr.state.il.us. This website will provide information about hunting seasons, renewal of fishing and boating licenses, and more.  

Q. How can I obtain background information about my doctor or other licensed professional?

A. Contact the Department of Professional Regulation to obtain records and copies of licenses at (217) 782-0458.  

Q. How can I renew my own professional license?

A. Go to www.idfpr.com/dpr/renewal.  

Q. How do I file an appeal on my property taxes?

A. Contact your county assessor’s office to obtain a Property Tax Appeal Board appeal form. Once the assessment appeal is filed, a hearing must be requested. Check with your county assessor for filing deadlines.  

Q. Where can I get a copy of my birth certificate?

A. Birth certificates can be obtained from the county clerk of the county in which you were born or from the Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH). Send a signed request to IDPH Division of Vital Records, 605 W. Jefferson Street, Springfield, Illinois 62702. The letter must include the full name at birth, date and place of birth, and parents’ full names, including mother’s maiden name. The charge is $15 for the first certified copy and $2 for each additional copy.  

Q. Where can I get information about the Secretary of State's services for senior citizens, veterans, and persons with disabilities?

A. Call the Secretary of State’s Senior Hotline at 1-800-252-8966 to obtain information about reduced license plate fees, defensive driving courses, and help with veterans' issues. Also visit the Secretary of State’s website at www.sos.state.il.us.  

Q. Where can I find information about financial assistance for students?

A. There are several grant and loan programs available throughout Illinois in addition to early planning programs like Bright Start, www.brightstartsavings.com or College Illinois!, www.collegeillinois.com. Please visit the Illinois Student Assistance Commission (ISAC) website at www.collegezone.com to learn more. ISAC is the agency with primary responsibility for student financial aid for Illinois students and their families.    

Q. Where can I find information about road projects in my area including road closures and highway repairs?

A. The Illinois Department of Transportation (IDOT) keeps a list of all current and future projects available for review on their web site at www.dot.state.il.us. It is updated often.

Q. Where should I go if I have a job complaint or feel I have been treated unfairly at work?

A. Visit Workplace Fairness on the web at http://www.workplacefairness.org/index.php?page=agencies_IL . Workplace Fairness is a non-profit organization that provides information, education and assistance to individual workers and their advocates nationwide and promotes public policies that advance employee rights.  

Q. Does Illinois have a sex offender registry?

A. Access to sex offender information in Illinois is provided to the public at http://www.isp.state.il.us/sor/, where the database can be accessed. For more information on Illinois laws dealing with sex offenders and to learn how to protect your family from sexual predators, visit the Attorney General’s website at http://www.ag.state.il.us/.

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