On May 20, 2013, Cook County Use Tax returns are required to be filed for all businesses in Cook County, Illinois, and individuals in Cook County who owe such use tax for purchases made in April 2013 from sellers located outside of Cook County. While a couple cases have been filed against the tax, no injunction has been issued. Therefore, any business or person that pays the tax may want to do so "under protest" to protect its ability to get a possible refund. While a refund may still be allowed if the tax is declared illegal, even if a payment under protest is not made, the county is taking the position that it will contest any such refunds.
However, it is important to note that even the payment of the tax under protest may not guarantee a refund if the tax is declared invalid. Rather, businesses and individuals seeking to truly protect their right to a refund of taxes paid may have to file their own action against the county and seek an injunction or special escrow fund for their tax payments. It is up to each taxpayer to decide whether the added protection is worth the cost of taking such action.