The Center for Disease Control (CDC) Orders a Temporary Eviction Moratorium
The Center for Disease Control (CDC) released an order in the Federal Register, which establishes a halt to evictions during COVID-19. The CDC Eviction Order is scheduled to be published on September 4, 2020, and extends to the end of 2020.
The CDC explains the reason for the eviction order:
Housing stability helps protect public health because homelessness increases the likelihood of individuals moving into congregate settings, such as homeless shelters, which then puts individuals at higher risk to COVID-19.
Limitations to CDC Eviction Order
However, this Order does not preclude evictions based on a tenant, lessee, or resident who is:
- Engaging in criminal activity while on the premises;
- Threatening the health or safety of other residents;
- Damaging or posing an immediate and significant risk of damage to property;
- Violating any applicable building code, health ordinance, or similar regulation relating to health and safety; or
- Violating any other contractual obligation, other than the timely payment of rent or similar housing-related payment (including non-payment or late payment of fees, penalties, or interest).
Residents Covered Under Eviction Order
The CDC’s order limits the protection against eviction to residents who meet specific conditions. Residents covered under this order include the following:
- the individual has used best efforts to obtain all available government assistance for rent or housing;
- the individual either (i) expects to earn no more than $99,000 in annual income for Calendar Year 2020 (or no more than $198,000 if filing a joint tax return), (ii) was not required to report any income in 2019 to the U.S. Internal Revenue Service, or (iii) received an Economic Impact Payment (stimulus check) under Section 2201 of the CARES Act;
- the individual is unable to pay the full rent or make a full housing payment due to substantial loss of household income, loss of compensable hours of work or wages, a lay-off, or extraordinary out-of-pocket medical expenses;
- the individual is using best efforts to make timely partial payments that are as close to the full payment as the individual’s circumstances may permit, taking into account other nondiscretionary expenses; and
- eviction would likely render the individual homeless— or force the individual to move into and live in close quarters in a new congregate or shared living setting— because the individual has no other available housing options.
The CDC’s Eviction Order does not supersede or replace local restrictions, which are more restrictive. This order does not alleviate the resident’s responsibility to pay rent and does not prevent property owners/agents from charging fees, interest, and other costs included in the lease agreement.
Based on the Order, renters must fill out a form that validates they meet a specific set of criteria to receive coverage through the eviction moratorium. The Declaration Form for tenants, lessees, or residents of residential properties is attached and can also be found by clicking here.
If an individual or organization seeks an eviction that violates the order, they will be subject to criminal penalties ranging from $100,000-$500,000.