COVID-19 Tenant Relief Act EXTENDED
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In one of many COVID-relief actions to come, we have passed, and the Governor has signed, legislation (SB 91) extending the eviction moratorium through June 30, 2021. Through this action, we will also deploy California's share of the latest federal stimulus relief to tenants and landlords, ensuring that $2.6 billion in renter aid is administered quickly and equitably to those most in need.
Even before the pandemic, far too many Californians struggled to keep their homes. This action by the Legislature and Governor is a vital step in the right direction to keep roofs over families' heads and prevent further evictions in our state.
Below is information about the new law. For more information, please visit housingiskey.com or call the California Housing is Key COVID-19 Assistance Line at 1-833-422-4255.
State Senator, 40th District
What do you need to know now?
- Eviction Relief. Tenants cannot be evicted for a COVID-19 related hardship that accrues between September 1, 2020 – June 30, 2021, if tenant returns declaration of hardship under penalty of perjury and pays at least 25% of the rent due by June 30, 2021.
- Rental Assistance. Federal law allocates funds for a statewide program, as enacted by SB 91 and authorizes eligible local jurisdictions the option of creating their own program. While applications are not expected to be available until March, you should also check on whether your local jurisdiction plans to stand up its own program. We will continue to monitor and provide legislative oversight as the program is being developed. For more information, please visit http://housingiskey.com or call the California Housing is Key COVID-19 Assistance Line at 1-833-422-4255.
- Once the statewide program is available, who is eligible and what does it do?
- Eligibility. Pursuant to federal law, income must be below 80% AMI (Area Median Income) based on total household income for calendar year 2020 or a household's monthly income at the time of application.You have earned income of $30,000 or less
- Prioritization given to households 1) below 50% AMI or 2) where they have been unemployed for the 90-day period prior to application. The statewide model will utilize rounds to prioritize those who need the assistance most.
- The rental assistance is available to individuals regardless of citizenship or immigration status.
- Program. Prioritization will be given to rental arrears. Prospective rent and utility arrears can be addressed thereafter. Utilities include electricity, gas, water and sewer, trash removal and energy costs, such as fuel oil.
- Additional Tenant Protections under SB 91. In addition to the tenant protections provided under AB 3088 which have been extended, the following NEW protections have been enacted:
- Prohibits a landlord from applying a tenant's security deposit to satisfy COVID-19 rental debt.
- Prohibits a landlord from charging late fees on the repayment of COVID-19 rental debt.
- Imposes a moratorium on a landlord's ability to sell or assign COVID-19 rental debt until June 30, 2021.
- Prohibits a landlord from selling or assigning COVID-19 rental debt of a tenant who qualified for the rental assistance program and is below 80% AMI.
- Imposes a moratorium on legal actions seeking to recover COVID-19 rental debt until July 1, 2021.
- Allows courts to reduce a COVID-19 rental debt damages if a landlord refused to participate in the rental assistance program with a qualified tenant.
- Requires a landlord seeking to recover COVID-19 rental debt to provide documentation that the landlord has made a good faith effort to cooperate with a tenant who qualifies for the rental assistance program.
- Allows a court to limit attorney's fees in COVID-19 rental debt cases.
- Prohibits a housing provider from using COVID-19 rental debt as a negative factor in evaluating a tenant's rent a unit.
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|California State Senator Ben Hueso - 40th Senate District
|Representing portions of San Diego County and all of Imperial County.
Web site: http://sd40.senate.ca.gov/|
State Capitol, Room 4035
Sacramento, CA 95814
Phone: (916) 651-4040
Fax: (916) 651-4940
|Chula Vista Office
303 H Street., Suite 200
Chula Vista, CA 91910
Phone: (619) 409-7690
Fax: (619) 409-7688
1224 State Street, Suite D
El Centro, CA 92243
Phone: (760) 335-3442
Fax: (760) 335-3444