On January 20, President Biden signed an executive order to extend the federal eviction moratorium until at least the end of March. As of January 19, the Federal Housing Finance Agency extended moratoriums on foreclosures and real estate owned evictions for federally backed mortgages until February 28. President Biden’s executive order asks that these moratoria also be extended through at least the end of March. This action follows and replaces an earlier extension of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s eviction moratorium to January 31, 2021 that was included in the Emergency Coronavirus Relief Act passed in December by Congress.
Governor Roy Cooper has also extended the state’s moratorium on evictions until March 31, following his earlier Executive Order and extension. Governor Cooper had provided additional clarifications and expanded protections for tenants in North Carolina through Executive Order no. 171 (“Assisting North Carolinians at Risk of Eviction” to help ensure more consistent and accurate application of the CDC moratorium across the state of North Carolina and provides a clearer process for tenants, landlords and court officials. See below for landlord requirements and tenant eligibility:
Requirements for Landlords
- The order requires landlords to provide tenants with a copy of the CDC Declaration form and submit a signed affidavit confirming the form was provided to the tenant when filing for eviction.
- Upon receiving a declaration form, landlords can take no action to request a writ of possession.
- If an eviction proceeding is in process or initiated after October 30, the landlord must immediately notify the court upon receipt of a declaration form from a tenant and submit a copy within five days.
- Landlords can challenge a tenant’s declaration by filing a response in writing identifying why the eviction should proceed.
Eligibility Criteria for Tenants
Tenants facing potential evictions for nonpayment of rent must make below a certain income and meet other factors laid out by the CDC. To qualify for coverage, each adult listed on the lease, rental agreement or housing contract must complete a declaration in writing that they meet the following criteria:
- Expect an annual income in 2020 of less than $99,000 OR were not required to file a 2019 tax return OR received an Economic Impact Payment pursuant to the CARES Act (“stimulus check”)
- Cannot pay full rent or make a housing payment due to substantial income loss, lay-offs, or extraordinary out-of-pocket medical expenses
- Have used best efforts to obtain all available government assistance (any governmental rental or housing payment benefits) for rent or housing
- Will continue to make best efforts to submit timely partial payments that are as close to full payment as individual’s circumstances permit
- Eviction would render the individual homeless or force the individual to move into and live in close quarters in a congregate or shared living setting because the individual has no other available housing options.