Illinois State Police to pay $100,000 to lawyers for overcharging for gun ID cards

Illinois State Police will no longer be charging vendor fees for applicants of the Firearm Owner’s Identification Card. They’ll also have to pay legal fees of up to $100,000 in a lawsuit brought by an applicant who said he was overcharged.
Some FOID card holders

Updated: December 29, 2021 - 8:11pm

Illinois State Police will no longer be charging vendor fees for applicants of the Firearm Owner’s Identification Card. They’ll also have to pay legal fees of up to $100,000 in a lawsuit brought by an applicant who said he was overcharged.

Some FOID card holders Thursday were sent a notification about an agreement to settle a class action case involving the fees paid for applying for a FOID card. Some payment options included a fee above the $10 laid out in state law.

“Generally, the case alleges that 430 ILCS 65/5 sets the cost for an Illinois Firearms Owners Identification Card at $10.00,” the notification sent by email said. “However, since March 15, 2015, Defendants have charged the $10.00 statutory fee plus applicable processing fee for an Illinois [FOID]. Currently, there exists no mechanism to obtain an Illinois Firearms Owners Identification Card for $10.00.”

The case in Madison County has Gary Terr as an individual suing the chief of the ISP Firearms Services Bureau and Illinois Treasurer Michael Frerichs on behalf of others.

“The parties have agreed to a proposed settlement,” the notification said.

Messages seeking comment from the Illinois Attorney General’s office, which is representing the state, were not returned Thursday.

In response to the notification, a public information officer for Illinois State Police Thursday sent a statement to The Center Square.

“On November 29, 2021, the Madison County Court entered an order of preliminary approval of the class action case Sterr v. Hacker, 15-L-1337,” the ISP statement said. “The settlement provides that ISP will add an option to pay the FOID Card application fee through an electronic check using the Automated Clearing House (ACH) system, resulting in a charge of $10.00 with no additional vendor fee paid by the applicant.”

The notification sent to FOID card holders said the agreement means no processing fee above $10, “unless and until the Illinois General Assembly changes the law.”

“In exchange, Defendants will pay class counsel up to $100,000.00 in litigation costs and attorney fees, as ultimately approved by the Court,” the notification says.

The notification also lays out how a class member could file a legal objection to the settlement.

The Maag Law Firm listed in the notification couldn’t be reached for comment Thursday.

Just the News Spotlight