Account Stated Case Law Illinois

“An account stated has been defined as an agreement between parties who have had previous transactions, that the account representing those transactions is true and that the balance stated is correct, together with a promise, express or implied, for the payment of such balance.” McHugh v. Olsen, 189 Ill.App.3d 508, 514, 545 N.E.2d 379 (1st Dist. 1989).

“An account stated is merely a form of proving damages for the breach of a promise to pay on a contract.” Dreyer Medical Clinic, S.C. v. Corral, 227 Ill.App.3d 221, 226, 591 N.E.2d 111 (2d Dist. 1992).

A cause of action for an account stated therefore requires allegation and proof that:

  • there was a contract between the parties, such as a credit card agreement or a contract for the sales of goods or services, Dreyer, 227 Ill.App.3d at 226-27,
  • a statement of account was sent to the party sought to be held liable, and
  • the statement was agreed to, expressly or by implication. Thomas Steel Corp. v. Ameri-Forge Corp., 91 C 2356, 1991 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 18110, 1991 WL 280085 (N.D.Ill., Dec. 27, 1991).

Agreement may be inferred from payment or retention for a substantial period without objection.

However, both the basic agreement and the rendition of an account must be proven. “The rule that an account rendered and not objected to within a reasonable time is to be regarded as correct assumes that there was an original indebtedness, but there can be no liability on an account stated if no liability in fact exists, and the mere presentation of a claim, although not objected to, cannot of itself create liability. . . . In other words, an account stated cannot create original liability where none exists; it is merely a final determination of the amount of an existing debt.” Motive Parts Co. of America, Inc. v. Robinson, 53 Ill.App.3d 935, 940, 369 N.E.2d 119 (1st Dist. 1977).

Thus, a cause of action for an account stated is founded on both (a) the underlying contract and (b) the statement of account sent to the debtor and agreed to by the debtor. Both must be attached.



Additional Information


  • avatar G. Armand

    “I was sued by a lawfirm representing Capital One in Illinois small claims court. The lawfirm eventually dismissed the case. I fought the lawsuit pro se. Their case against me never got to trial and was never argued on its merit. Capital One filed a complaint against me with the cause of action being “breach of contract” pursuant to use of their credit card. Attached to their complaint were barely legible 2005 cardholder and arbitration agreements and an affidavit from a “Shawn Wood” , a third-party “litigation support” person.

    After being served I immediately filed a sworn denial and a motion to dismiss pursuant to Rule 282 (no written instrument case is based on was attached to the complaint). I never opened a Capital One account in 2005 (I did in 2004) and the affidavit, pursuant to section 2-606 of the ILCS, did not disclose why a 2004 cardholder agreement could not be attached to the complaint. I then requested leave to file a motion for Capital One to produce all documents it was going to use at trial. Capital One produced account statements and responded to my request for leave with said documents and a response claiming they produced “everything they were going to use at trial”. I then filed for leave again to have the case dismissed pursuant to section 2-606 of the code. At trial I was going to motion to strike the attached affidavit pursuant to Rule 191 (heresay) as well, the affiant had no first hand knowledge of my account even if he did appear at trial. A week before trial the firm representing Capital One filed a motion to dismiss their case. Since they filed a pleading stating that they had “produced everything” they were going to use at trial and did not file for leave to amend the complaint, I motioned the case be dismissed with predjudice.
    The merit of the case was never addressed.

    My suggestion to anyone being sued by a Capital One for an amount they do not owe is to study the law, case law, review other cases and appellate decisions. It appeared to me the the lawfirm was just a hired gun and depended on default judgments. Every filing they filed was a fill-in-the-blank template. If you are in the right, do not be intimidated. Be diligent!”


  • avatar R. Nacion

    “G. Armand, Congratulations on your success. I love hearing success stories. I am also from Illinois and being sued by the original credit card bank. Upon reading your story above, you sound much more knowledgeable and more experienced than me. In fact this is my first time going to court on matters other than traffic tickets. I would appreciate it very much if you could email me the pleadings and motions as well as your adversaries pleadings and motions that were submitted to the court. May be it would help me write an effective pleadings and motions. I have to appear in court on Aug 18, 2010. I would love to buy the “The Defendant’s Package” but the sad truth is that I don’t have anymore money. It’s like a catch-22 situation I am in. Any help would be appreciated. Thanks. My email address is rnacion@comcast.net”


  • avatar Shari

    “It is too late for me because the junk debt collector (Palisades Collection LLC) through the debt collection law firm Blitt & Gaines was able to get an default judgment against me. They (Blitt & Gaines) sent a appearance summons by first class mail and I only had 3 days to file an answer with the court. The summons said they were representing Palisades They had over 5 months to prepare a case and I only had 2 days. They filed the lawsuit back in October 2010 and I did not know anything about it until January 31st. They did not even attached a complaint to the summons so I had no idea what questions I was suppose to answer. The only way I found out about the default judgment is that I received a letter in the mail from another law firm saying that they can represent me in a bankruptcy filing. The letter stated that according to court records that Palisades Collection has obtained a default judgment against you for a amount that is over $4,000. Wow it is nice to know that the court systems work against you and that I am ruined financially and don’t know how I am going to pay this debt with no money. I asked for debt validation but never received it from Blitt & Gaines nor Palisades Collection. I have been dealing with Palisades for over 3 years and they refused to validate the debt, they only keep sending it to another debt collector. They filed the lawsuit before I sent off the validation of debt letter and ignored it and proceeded with the case. They also called me and threatened me saying that we sent you a summons and there is nothing you can do about it. They probably already had the default judgment before they called me. Guess they got the last laugh because the were able to find a law firm who manipulated the court. Pretty good use of their funds, it only cost them $225 to file the lawsuit and they get close to $4500 in return. Don’t know what to do, very depressed about this and wished I had hired a lawyer. Now I will have to find a way to get $4500 in a lump sum, don’t know how it will happen, because they probably already frozen my bank account. I just hope one day I can get in on a class action lawsuit against them.”