The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) took action on September 1, 2020 by issuing a “temporary national moratorium” on most evictions for nonpayment of rent to help prevent the spread of coronavirus. Citing the historic threat to public health posed by coronavirus, the CDC declared that an eviction moratorium would help ensure people are able to practice social distancing and comply with stay-at-home orders. The moratorium took effect on September 4 and will last until December 31, 2020.
How do you know if you are covered by the moratorium?
To be eligible, renters must meet the following qualifications:
- You have used your “best efforts” to obtain government rental assistance;
- You do not expect to earn more than $99,000 in 2020 (or $198,000 if you are married and filed a joint tax return), or you did not need to report income to the federal government in 2019, or you received an Economic Impact Payment this year;
- You have been experiencing a “substantial” loss of household income because of a layoff or reduced work hours, or you have “extraordinary” out-of-pocket medical expenses (defined as an unreimbursed medical expense that exceeds 7.5% of your adjusted gross income for the year);
- You have been making your best effort to make partial rent payments as close to the full amount due as possible; and
- Being evicted would cause you to become homeless or you would have to move in with a friend or family member (live “doubled up”).
Renters must also understand that they will still need to pay rent (and any accrued late fees) at the end of the moratorium (December 31, 2020); and that any false/misleading statements may result in criminal and civil actions.
Renters who meet all of the above listed criteria must sign a declaration and provide it to their landlord. There is a copy of a sample of this declaration at the CDC website, www.CDC.gov/coronavirus, and here on our resources page. All adult members of the household must sign a declaration if they wish to qualify for this protection. The CDC does not require you to provide any proof with the declaration nor to prove that your hardship is COVID19 related. If able, tenants should pay as much of their rent as possible in order to continue meeting the qualifications for the moratorium. All back rent will be due once the moratorium expires on December 31, 2020.
Under this order, tenants may still be evicted for;
- Conducting criminal activity on the property
- Threatening the health or safety of other residents;
- Damaging or posing an immediate and significant risk of damage to the property;
- Violating applicable building codes, health ordinances, or other regulations related to health and safety; and
- Violating any contractual obligation other than the timely payment of rent, late fees, penalties, or interest.