Floating under the radar during so much NOISE the past couple weeks … the CDC announced a halt to evictions for residential renters, and that starts THIS WEEK.
First of all, the authority the CDC cites to establish this rule is the Public Health Service Act of 1944, which is also being cited in a variety of contexts over the course of the past 6 months.
Might there be legal challenges to this? Ah, yes….
But that doesn’t mean it’s okay to ignore this eviction moratorium. It’s on.
Per the ruling, the eviction stay is in place until the end of the year (for now).
But good news/bad news, this doesn’t mean that anything goes.
- Earn a documentable AGI (Adjusted Gross Income) of less than $99,000 (single) or $198,000 (married filing jointly), AND
- Demonstrate they have tried to pay at least some portion of monthly rent, AND
- Have suffered income loss or medical expense increases due to COVID-19, AND
- Have applied for government assistance in some form or fashion, AND
- Confirm and document that if they were evicted, they would be homeless or must go to an unsafe, crowded facility, AND
- File a specific form with the landlord. (If you’re a tenant needing to do this, I suggest sending the form by certified mail for legal paper trail purposes.)
So … if you meet all these requirements, then you can take advantage of this order.
Landlords — it is a good idea to keep these rules in mind.
Obviously, if you want to have a good relationship with your tenant, you will operate in a humane, kind fashion when they’re in distress.
But if push comes to shove, these are the rules, and knowledge is power.
And tenants — you must especially keep these rules in mind. If you need the help, play the game the right way.
Further, per the rule, tenants may not
1) damage property or pose a threat to the health or safety of neighbors
2) pay nothing
3) ignore the rules above or
4) fail to file the right form with their landlord and still expect that the eviction stay will cover you.