Updates on the CDC’s Order: A “Temporary Halt” for Nonpayment Evictions

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9/3/2020: Guidance on CDC Order Temporarily Halting Certain Evictions

Source: National Apartment Association (NAA)

9/2/2020: Yesterday, the Centers for Disease Control announced that it intends to publish an Order on Friday, Sept. 4th that will create an “Eviction Suspension” program as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. We wanted to share some information with you, to help you digest this breaking (and still developing) news:

Q: Is this an eviction moratorium?

A: No, it’s not. Many are using the term moratorium as a convenient way to short-hand the content of the Order. The proposed Order would actually create a protocol in the nature of a “lockout suspension program”, and not a ‘moratorium’ in any sense. The Order actually uses the words “temporary halt” in describing the effect on lockouts/setouts/removals and makes clear that it can only be utilized in cases filed for non-payment of rent.

Q: Does this apply to ALL tenants?

A. The program only applies to eligible tenants, NOT all tenants. If all tenants in a rental unit submit to the Landlord a written Declaration, under penalty of perjury, that they meet the Order’s ‘qualifying criteria’, they may temporarily halt a lockout/setout. Not all tenants will meet the criteria, however, and their cases would therefore not be covered by this Order.

Q: Is the Order permanent?

A: The effect of the Order is not permanent. The Order itself contemplates a “temporary halt,” and would prevent ONLY actions that result in the removal of the tenant from the dwelling, and only until Dec. 31, 2020. After that, barring new legislative or regulatory changes, lockouts should be able to proceed for any tenants who have not gotten caught up or moved out.
The National Apartment Association (NAA) reported being deeply concerned by this action and given that it remains uncoupled with robust emergency rental assistance,  saying “they understand the devastating effects a national eviction moratorium will have on the apartment industry, housing affordability, and America’s 40 million apartment residents.”

We will update you as soon as we have more information. Our team is ready and willing to assist you, please contact us if you have any questions