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If you’re wondering what we do when we’re screening tenants, or how we stay up to date on all the fair housing laws, we invite you to pay attention to our blogs and articles. Part of our work as professional property managers includes sharing what we know. You can find educational videos, blogs, and other information right here, and if something you see sparks additional questions, we hope you’ll get in touch.
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Following the New Jersey Eviction Moratorium
Last updated on Friday, August 6, 2021
You will find the following in this blog:
When Does the Eviction Moratorium End?
Updates Landlords Need to Know
When does the eviction moratorium end in New Jersey?
New Jersey ordered end date:
December 30, 2021
Nationwide CDC end date for "covered persons":
October 3, 2021
NJ ordered end date for some (income dependent):
August 31, 2021
Criteria and Definitions
Income levels are defined as the following, and they are a percentage of the median (average) income based on the household size in the area in which they reside* (also known as the Area Median Income, or AMI):
- Very low income: at or below 30% AMI
- Low income: at or below 50% AMI
- Moderate income: above 50% AMI, below 80%
- Middle income: at or above 80% AMI and below 120% AMI
*Renters will be able to determine their household income level by completing the state’s online self-certification form.
Read the full CDC Eviction Order here.
“Covered person” means any tenant, lessee, or resident of a residential property who provides to their landlord, the owner of the residential property, or other person with a legal right to pursue eviction or a possessory action, a declaration under penalty of perjury indication that:
- The individual has used best efforts to obtain all available governmental assistance for rent or housing;
- The individual either (i) earned no more than $99,000 (or $198,000 if filing jointly) in Calendar Year 2020 or expects to earn no more than $99,000 in annual income for Calendar Year 2021 (or no more than $198,000 if filling a joint tax return), (ii) was not required to report any income in 2020 to the U.S. Internal Revenue Service, or (iii) received an Economic Impact Payment (stimulus check).
- The individual is unable to pay the full rent or make a full housing payment due to substantial loss of household income, loss of compensable hours of work or wages, a lay-off or extraordinary out-of-pocket medical expenses;
- The individual is using best efforts to make timely partial rent payments that are as close to the full rent payment as the individual’s circumstances may permit, taking into account other nondiscretionary expenses;
- Eviction would likely render the individual homeless–or force the indivdual to move into and reside in close quarters in a new congregate or shared living setting–because the individual has no other available housing options; and
- The individual resides in a U.S. county experiencing substantial or high rates of community transmission levels of SARS-CoV-2 as defined by CDC.
“Substantial” and “high level” transmission levels are experiencing (1) 50.99-99.99 new cases in the county in the past 7 days divided by the population in the county multiplied by 100,000; and (2) 8.00-9.99% positive nucleic acid amplification tests in the past 7 days (number of positive tests in the county during the past 7 days divided by the total number of tests performed in the county during the past 7 days).
Check your county’s level of community transmission here.
The Latest Updates Landlords Need to Know
August 4, 2021
Governor Murphy signs Sweeping Housing Eviction Prevention Bill
Governor Murphy signed into legislation two bills that will provide comprehensive eviction protections, as well as utility assistance for renters.
Households are protected from eviction for nonpayment of rent, habitual late payment of rent, or failure to accept a rent increase that accrued from March 1, 2020 through August 31, 2021, if they meet the income eligibility requirements and file the required Self-Certification Form.
Outstanding rent from before March 1, 2020 or after August 31, 2021 can be grounds for eviction.
Landlords can still pursue an action for a money judgement (not an eviction) for any rent due.
Who can be evicted starting August 31, 2021?
Households that are middle-income and above (see above “Criteria and Definitions”) can be evicted for rent arrearages accrued before March 1, 2020 and after August 31, 2021.
These tenants may still be protected by the CDC’s criteria of a “covered person” (see above “Criteria and Definitions”) through October 3, 2021. Whichever criteria is more restrictive stands.
Who is protected until December 31, 2021?
Tenants who are very low-, low-, and moderate-income are protected from eviction for rent accrued through December 31, 2021, if
- They submit the form certifying their income level
- They have suffered economic hardship due to COVID-19, and
- Applied for rental assistance for which they are eligible
August 3, 2021
CDC temporarily halts residential evictions nationwide
CDC extends nationwide moratorium through October 3, 2021 for “covered persons” (see above “Criteria and Definitions”) in counties with heightened levels of community transmission.
This order only applies to counties experiencing “substantial” or “high levels” (see above “Criteria and Definitions”) of community transmission of SARS-CoV-2 as defined by the CDC.
If a county that is not covered by this order at implementation (August 3, 2021), but later experiences “substantial” or “high levels” of community transmission while the order is still in effect, then the county will become subject to this order.
This also works in the opposite direction. If a county is covered by the order at implementation, and then is no longer experiencing “substantial” or “high levels” of community transmission, the order no longer applies to the county.
Check your county’s level of community transmission here.
July 23, 2021
eviction moratorium ruled unlawful
What does this mean for landlords? As of right now, this doesn’t really mean anything.
On July 23, a federal court ruled that the CDC overstepped its authority when it implemented the federal eviction moratorium. Since the federal eviction moratorium ends July 30, 2021, there is really nothing to do about this ruling that will affect landlords.
The New Jersey eviction moratorium is still in effect through the end of 2021.
July 2, 2021
moving forward with evictions
Courts across New Jersey are scheduling mandatory settlement conferences for landlord tenant cases.
The idea is to implement payment plans before proceeding with the eviction process in court.
Case priority goes to the oldest pending cases with the most unpaid rent and newly filed cases where more than 12 months’ rent is due and owed.
Notices by the court have already started being sent by mail – be on the look out for yours.
What does this mean for Landlords?
If you have a tenant who owes over 12 months’s rent and have not filed eviction, now may be the time to do so.
If you already have a case pending and are called to appear before the court for a settlement conference, don’t miss your conference date. If the Landlord does not appear, their case will be dismissed.
No later than five days prior to your conference date, make sure to submit the lease, ledger and landlord registration (if applicable), and be ready with proof to move the process along as quick as possible.
Every county may enforce the Court order within their discretion and as such it may differ from County to County.
For example, Gloucester county is allowing for exhibits to be provided no later than 3 days prior to the settlement conference date, instead of 5.
What will happen during the settlement conference?
If both parties appear...
The settlor will assist the Landlord and Tenant on working out an agreement in writing.
However, if no settlement is reached, a Proof Hearing will be scheduled.
If the tenant does not show up
Default/Judgement of Possession will be entered by the clerk.
If the Landlord is prepared, then a Proof Hearing will be held by the court that same day.
If the Landlord is not prepared, the court will schedule a Proof Hearing within 10 days of the original settlement conference date.
At the Proof Hearing...
Should the Landlord prove its allegations, Default Judgement will be entered.
However, a lockout cannot take place until January 1, 2021, pursuant to the Governor’s Executive Order 106.
Do you have a tenant not paying rent? Or maybe multiple?
Stay connected with us to receive the latest updates on the New Jersey eviction moratorium.
Resources for Landlords and Tenants
Tenants or landlords aren’t prohibited from applying for assistance from more than one program or more than once from the same program.
The state program is available to all residents throughout NJ; the county programs are available to county residents.
Tenants or landlords are prohibited from receiving assistance for the same period of rental arrears.
New Jersey state program for renters and landlords (CVERAP II):
Local (county and municipal) Rental Assistance Finder (nationwide)
Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) designed this tool to help renters and housing providers find their local program and eligibility requirements
THIS IS NOT LEGAL ADVICE
The information contained in this blog post and on this website are for educational and informational purposes only.
We expressly recommend you consult your attorney prior to taking any actions. The information contained in this blog and on this Website are not intended as, and shall not be understood or construed as, legal advice.
Neither KeyVest LLC nor any of its attorneys shall be held liable or responsible for any errors or omissions on this website or for any damage you may suffer as a result of failing to seek competent legal advice from a licensed attorney who is familiar with your situation.
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