Extension of CDC Order to Temporarily Halt Residential Evictions Nationwide
The Coronavirus Response and Relief Supplemental Appropriations Act, 2021 was signed into law by President Trump on December 27. Section 502 of the Act extended the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Order of September 4, 2020 which temporarily halts residential evictions for failure to pay rent until January 31, 2021. The original order is discussed in more detail in a law alert from September 3rd, which can be found here.
RENT STILL REQUIRED; PENALTIES FOR VIOLATION
As with the Order, the Act does not relieve any individual of any obligation to pay rent, make a housing payment, or comply with any other obligation under a tenancy, lease, or similar contract. Further, landlords are still permitted to charge and collect fees, penalties, or interest as a result of the failure to pay rent or other housing payments on a timely basis, under the terms of any applicable lease. For a resident to invoke the extended moratorium of the Act or protections from the original Order and become a “covered person” or protected resident, the resident must provide an executed copy of the Declaration form found here (or a similar declaration under penalty of perjury is permitted) to their landlord.
The extension of the Act does not apply in any State, local, territorial, or tribal area with a moratorium on residential evictions that provides the same or greater level of public-health protection than the requirements (halt on evictions) in the Order. In fact, while waiting so see if the federal government would extend the Order moratorium, many local and state authorities implemented their own eviction moratoriums.
It is recommended that all owners, landlords and property managers be familiar with the Order and also have legal counsel determine if any local or state moratoriums have been enacted in addition to the extension of the Order.