Last week, the Supreme Court struck down the CDC’s latest extension of the eviction moratorium, which was supposed to last through Oct. 3. That means millions of renters now face eviction, although some states have their own eviction bans still in place, and rental assistance is available—despite a delayed rollout in many states. Here’s a closer look at your options if you’re facing eviction or can’t otherwise afford your rent.
What happened to the federal eviction moratorium?
After suggesting that the CDC was exceeding its authority in June, the Supreme Court has reversed the agency’s latest extension, effective immediately. The majority opinion stated that the CDC relied on “a decades-old statute that authorizes it to implement measures like fumigation and pest extermination.” The ruling suggested that a federal ban should be authorized by Congress, instead.
Some states still have their own eviction moratoriums
The following states have either eviction bans or graduated easing on eviction bans that extend into September:
- California: An eviction ban is in place through Sept. 30. The legal news site Nolo has a list of cities and townships that also have restrictions here. There’s also a ban on utility shut-offs based on nonpayment until at least Sept. 30, 2021 for most utilities.
- Washington, D.C.: The mayor has enacted a phased out approach, allowing evictions based on nonpayment as early as Oct. 12. Landlords may begin filing evictions of any type, as of Jan. 1, 2022. More details can be found here.
- Illinois: Gov. Pritzker has extended the existing eviction moratorium, through Sept. 18, 2021.
- Minnesota: Minnesota renters not eligible for emergency rental assistance are protected from eviction until Sept. 12. However, renters with a pending application for federal rental assistance can’t be evicted until June 2022, per GOBankingRates.
- Nevada: Tenants can delay eviction by showing proof that they have applied for rental assistance.
- New Jersey: Renters are protected from eviction and eviction court cases through Dec. 31, 2021, provided that their annual household income is below 80% of their county’s median income.
- New Mexico: The state’s supreme court has a temporary moratorium on evictions in place already, with no end date at this time.
- New York: The existing state moratorium on eviction bans is set to expire today, although an extension until the end of the year is in the works.
- Oregon: Per NOLO, landlords must wait 60 days before filing an eviction if the tenant provides documentation proving that they’ve applied for rental assistance.
- Washington: Earlier this summer, Gov. Jay Inslee announced a “bridge” extension of an existing state eviction moratorium, effective through Sept. 30.
Don’t forget about rent assistance programs
Despite the fact that it was established early in the pandemic, the $46.5 billion Emergency Rental Assistance Program has only doled out 11% of its funds, according to the New York Times. While the federal government provides the funding, states are responsible for the actual distribution of rent assistance, and they’ve been sluggish in doing so, with delays resulting from understaffing and overly stringent documentation requirements.
Fortunately, access to rental assistance is slowly improving. If you haven’t done so already, check out the National Low Income Housing Coalition’s new Emergency Rental Assistance Dashboard, which allows you to search for rental assistance in your area. The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau also has a good guide for renters that can’t afford their rent here. For free legal help relating to evictions, contact either LawHelp.org or the Legal Services Corporation.