Center for Disease Control (CDC) National Eviction Moratorium FAQ
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What does the CDC moratorium do?
The CDC's new moratorium, issued on August 3, stops landlords from evicting tenants for non-payment of rent until October 3, 2021 in counties where rates of COVID transmission is high. This is currently true for every county in NYC. You can check here. This potentially includes some types of holdover cases where non-payment is involved.
To be covered by the moratorium, a tenant needs to live in a county with high COVID transmission rates and give their landlord a sworn declaration that says they:
- tried everything they could to get government help to pay their rent;
- have income less than $99,000, did not have to pay income tax in 2019, or received a stimulus check;
- can't pay rent due to income loss or extraordinary out-of-pocket medical expenses;
- would become homeless or need to double/triple-up if they're evicted;
- will pay their landlord as much as they can, taking into account their other essential expenses.
Note: if you submitted a CDC declaration form before this new moratorium was issued, you do not need to submit it again. The prior declaration still stands.
Who’s not covered by the CDC’s moratorium?
Tenants who are facing eviction for issues unrelated to rent payment or live in areas where COVID transmission rates are low. Of course, tenants and their lawyers will argue that the moratorium covers other types of eviction cases, but the CDC moratorium is really clear that it covers tenants in non-payment cases.
What’s the downside of the CDC Moratorium?
- It doesn't include a clear prohibition on landlords suing tenants, which is a serious cause of anxiety and stress. To date, NY courts continue to accept new eviction case filings and they are not asking landlords about the declaration before they file or taking any steps to stop landlords with declarations from filing.
- It requires that tenants make declarations that many lawyers would not advise a tenant to make when they can still be sued and evicted eventually.
- It requires tenants to swear they’ll pay their landlord what little money they have, clearly prioritizing a landlord’s profit over tenants’ needs. Plus, tenants will be paying their landlords their last resources to avoid eviction in the short term, but their landlord can still sue them and evict them for any unpaid amount after October 3, 2021.
- It’s too short! For NY tenants it will most likely expire before it could benefit anyone sued during COVID.
I think I qualify, should I send my landlord the declaration?
If you’re thinking about sending your landlord the CDC declaration, all tenants should get legal advice before submitting this declaration, because it could have legal consequences after the moratorium lifts.
For Individual Advice:
- In NYC, CALL:
The Housing Court Answers hotline at 212-962-4795, from Mon-Fri, from 9-5. This hotline is staffed by housing court advocates who can walk you through the process and connect you with resources. They take calls in all languages.
You can also call 311 and ask for the Tenant Help Line, which is currently staffed by Right to Counsel Attorneys.
Because of Right to Counsel--you should absolutely talk to an attorney before deciding!
- Outside of NYC, call the Statewide hotline: 833-503-0447, open 24/7.
- To be connected to a housing counselor through the US Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) to see if you are eligible for the CDC moratorium, call (800) 569-4287.