The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) took the extraordinary and unprecedented action of issuing a national moratorium on most evictions for nonpayment of rent to temporarily halt evictions to help prevent the spread of coronavirus. The action is long overdue and badly needed; it will provide essential protection to millions of renters. The moratorium took effect on September 4 and expires December 31, 2020.
As NLIHC President and CEO Diane Yentel stated in a press statement, “While an eviction moratorium is an essential step, it is a half-measure that extends a financial cliff for renters to fall off of when the moratorium expires and back rent is owed. This action delays but does not prevent evictions. Congress and the White House must get back to work on negotiations to enact a COVID-19 relief bill with at least $100 billion in emergency rental assistance.” The eviction moratorium does not provide emergency rental assistance resources to cover back rent, utilities, or fees.
Citing the historic threat to public health, 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 announcement cites the increased risk of spreading coronavirus when people are evicted from their homes or experience homelessness.
To be protected, qualified renters facing eviction should immediately provide a signed declaration to their landlords. For more details about the moratorium and a sample declaration renters can use, read NLIHC’s and NHLP’s Overview of National Eviction Moratorium and our National Eviction Moratorium: FAQ for Renters.
In the declaration, renters must state, under penalty of perjury, that they: (1) have used their best efforts to obtain rental assistance; (2) expect to earn no more than $99,000 in 2020 (or no more than $198,000 if filing a joint tax return), were not required to report income in 2019 to the IRS, or did not an Economic Impact Payment under the CARES Act; (3) are unable to pay the full rent or make a full rent payment due to loss of income, loss of work hours, or extraordinary medical costs; (4) are using best efforts to make partial rent payments; and (5) an eviction would result in homelessness or force them to double or triple up with other households.
The only way to protect the 30 to 40 million renters at risk of losing their homes by the end of the year is for Congress and the White House return to the negotiating table and work out a deal for the next coronavirus relief package that includes the essential resources and protections provided in the HEROES Act. Congress must enact legislation that includes NLIHC’s top priorities: a national, uniform moratorium on all evictions for nonpayment of rent; at least $100 billion in emergency rental assistance through the "Emergency Rental Assistance and Rental Market Stabilization Act” and housing vouchers; and $11.5 billion to help prevent and respond to outbreaks among people experiencing homelessness.
Read NLIHC’s press statement at: https://tinyurl.com/yy285krh
Read the CDC order at: https://tinyurl.com/yxoq7oo7
See NLIHC’s and NHLP’s “Overview of the National Eviction Moratorium” at: https://tinyurl.com/y5rdv4vy
See NLIHC’s and NHLP’s FAQ for renters at: https://tinyurl.com/y4a3z9gk