Legal Self-Help

The Circuit Clerk’s office and other court personnel can give procedural information but are prohibited by law from giving legal advice. McHenry County Administrative Order 93-4 explains the fact that court personnel are specifically prohibited by law from giving out legal advice. If you need legal advice, you should seek the assistance of an attorney. If you cannot afford an attorney, listed below are some contacts for obtaining legal assistance, in addition to resources for locating an attorney.

McHenry County Law Library / Self-Help Legal Center

McHenry County Government Center – Room 368 
2200 N. Seminary Avenue
 Woodstock, IL 60098
Hours: Open 9:00 a.m. – 1:00 p.m., Monday – Friday 
Closed: All Court Holidays

The Self-Help Legal Center was established to assist individuals who are not able to retain attorneys to represent them in court proceedings. A computer “navigator” is available in the Law Library to assist individuals with their own legal research. The Self-Help Legal Center offers: user-friendly forms & instructions, staff assistance, public access to computers, legal research materials and procedural information. The Self-Help Center’s online system is available 24/7.  

Prairie State Legal Services (Civil Cases Only)

400 Russel Court
Woodstock, IL 60098

Prairie State Legal Services, Inc. is a non-profit law firm that provides free civil legal aid to low-income persons and seniors who have important legal problems affecting their basic human needs.  Prairie State serves clients in 36 counties in northern and central Illinois, outside of Cook County, from 11 local offices. They represent survivors of domestic violence, divorce and other family cases; people with disabilities who are wrongfully denied benefits; tenants who are being unlawfully evicted from their homes; families who are facing utility shutoffs or mortgage foreclosures; seniors who are facing improper discharge from nursing homes or are victims of elder abuse; veterans who need help securing benefits to which they are entitled; and many others with urgent legal problems.  

McHenry County Public Defender 

2200 N. Seminary Ave.
Woodstock, IL 60098


The McHenry County Public Defender represents individuals charges with a criminal offense in McHenry County.  The representation begins only after the accused person requests the appointment of counsel by the Court, is shown to be indigent by filing an affidavit of assets and liabilities, and the Court in a written order directs that person to be represented by the Public Defender’s Office.  

Illinois Legal Aid Online (ILAO)

Illinois Legal Aid Online (ILAO) is an online resource that provides easy to understand legal information and assistance to the public and self-represented persons. ILAO delivers easy-to-understand legal information and assistance to those who cannot afford a lawyer.  The website contains over 1,700 pages of legal content, translated into both Spanish and Polish.

McHenry County Bar Association

114 S. Jefferson St. (P.O. Box 37)
Woodstock, IL 60098
(815) 338-9559

Volunteer attorneys from the McHenry County Bar Association are available at the free McHenry County Bar Association Attorney Help Desk on Monday mornings, from 9:30am to 11:30 am in the 2nd floor Rotunda (just off the elevator) of the Courthouse.  

Legal Self Help

Illinois State Bar Association

Statewide Lawyer Directory
(217) 525-5297 or (800) 922-8757
Monday – Friday from 9:00 am to 2:00 pm

Illinois Court Help

Illinois Court Help is a free service provided by the Illinois Courts which can connect you to the information you need to go to court. Get specific answers to your questions about the court process, like how to file court documents. Get connected to legal aid and community resources to help you solve your problem. Visit to find more information. For statewide court information call or text (833) 411-1121 Illinois Court Help

Illinois Court Help

IL Free Legal Answers

Illinois Free Legal Answers is a secure website where those who meet income requirements can ask a lawyer for  help with a legal issue, including civil appeals.  Qualified users can post questions about civil (non-criminal) appeals and volunteer lawyers will logon to the site and answer questions.  Illinois Free Legal Answers is the only help desk in Illinois dedicated to civil appeals and is sponsored by the Public Interest Law Initiative (PILI).