Worker Adjustment and Retraining Notification Act (WARN)

The Illinois WARN Act requires employers with 75 or more full-time employees to give workers and state and local government officials 60 days advance notice of a plant closing or mass layoff. An employer that fails to provide notice as required by law is liable to each affected employee for back pay and benefits for the period of the violation, up to a maximum of 60 days. The employer may also be subject to a civil penalty of up to $500 for each day of the notice violation. This law does not apply to federal, state, or local governments.

Additional Information Regarding COVID-19:  The Illinois Department of Labor (IDOL) recognizes the unprecedented challenges posed by the COVID-19 pandemic, including unexpected business closures. If a covered employer is forced to close or significantly reduce its workforce in the form of a mass layoff, the WARN Act, 820 ILCS 65/1 et seq., will apply. IDOL will provide individual determinations to employers who seek an exception under Section 15 of the Act. To request the determination, the employer must provide IDOL with a written basis describing the basis for reducing the notification period. IDOL will then make an individual determination in an expedited manner. If the request is approved, an employer must provide as much notice as soon as practicable. 

The WARN Act already recognizes that there are instances where the need to provide notice may not be reasonably foreseeable. Any investigation conducted by IDOL of an employer who has already closed or significantly reduced its workforce in the form of mass layoff, without providing the requisite notice, will be analyzed as if the employer had sought a determination under Section 15 of the Act. If an unexpected event caused your business to close, please provide as much information as possible to IDOL about the circumstances of your closure so the Department can determine if an exception to the WARN Act applies.


Contact Number​

WARN ACT Information: (217) 785-4420