CDC – Federal Moratorium on Evictions – Update

The End of Moratorium

On August 26, 2021, the United States Supreme Court ruled in a 6-3 decision that the Center for Disease Control (CDC) Moratorium on evictions is unconstitutional. The Court found that the CDC did not have the constitutional authority to issue a national moratorium, and any further moratorium would need to come from the legislature.

The federal moratorium on evictions was previously extended until October 3, 2021, for all United States counties facing a high spread of coronavirus. Practically speaking, this accounted for 95% of the nation. With the latest Supreme Court Ruling, that extension is over.

What Does this Mean for Landlords?

Many landlords across Pennsylvania have not been receiving regular rent since the first CDC moratorium went into effect in 2020.  Some landlords have not received any rent at all.  With the latest Supreme Court ruling, landlords are once again free to seek eviction of tenants who are past due on rent. While the moratorium stayed evictions, it did not stay the requirement for rent. With the moratorium now over, landlords may freely seek all past due rent, and eviction. Depending upon the lease agreement, landlords may also seek a judgment for any attorney fees, and court courts for filing the claim.

What Does this mean for tenants?

With the moratorium over, landlords are now free to evict tenants for not paying rent. Not only will landlords be able to seek eviction, but all past due rent. Many counties across Pennsylvania have rent assistance programs, who may be able to help assist tenants pay their past due rent. If a tenant is unable to pay rent, with or without assistance, the landlord can now file a claim monetary damages and eviction in the local district court.  If the claim is based entirely on unpaid rent, the court will issue a pay to stay judgment. This gives tenants an additional ten (10) days to pay their outstanding. If the tenant can not pay, the eviction process will continue, and the tenant will be removed from the property.

If you are a landlord or tenant in need of legal counsel regarding an eviction, please contact Musi, Merkins, Daubenberger & Clark, L.L.P at 610-891-8806.