Evictions Banned For the Rest of 2020

The White House announced yesterday the U.S. Centers for Disease Control (CDC) will halt evictions through the end of the year.

The order temporarily prevents as many as 43 million residential tenants from being evicted as long as they meet income eligibility requirements. Individual renters who earn less than $99,000 this year or couples who earn less than $198,000 qualify.

Those who meet that criteria must demonstrate to their landlord they have made efforts to obtain government assistance (including a stimulus check through the CARES Act.) They must also be able to demonstrate they have made their best efforts to make timely partial payments to the landlord. Finally, tenants must also be able to show being evicted will cause them to become homeless.

Many landlords have now gone several months without receiving rent and due to eviction moratoriums, have been unable to evict tenants who have fallen behind.

In early August, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said on CNBC, “You can’t just extend the moratorium, you’ve got to have money. If they extend the moratorium, people won’t have to pay their rent just yet. It will get pushed further down the road unless we get some money for them to compensate for what they have to get. And that’s not just for the renters, that’s for the landlords.”

“What good is a moratorium until the end of the year if you don’t have some money to pay rent?”, she added.

White House officials suggested in an effort to help landlords that the Department of Housing and Urban Development wants state and local governments to use certain block-grant programs to help landlords. There may also be money available from the stimulus bill signed into law in March.

The CDC’s order does not supersede Minnesota Gov. Tim Walz’s Executive Order which is more comprehensive than the CDC’s order. In Minnesota, if the Executive Order was lifted or modified in a way that offered tenants less protection than the federal order, the latter would take effect through December 31.

Neither the CDC order nor the governor’s order relieves the tenant’s responsibility for paying rent, late fees, penalties or interest.