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CDC extends federal eviction moratorium through June

The order was set to expire at the end of March.
A sign marks the entrance to the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in Atlanta. [Associated Press]
A sign marks the entrance to the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in Atlanta. [Associated Press]
Published Mar. 29, 2021|Updated Mar. 29, 2021

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has issued an order extending the federal eviction moratorium through June 30. It had been set to expire at the end of March.

The extension order, which was dated on Sunday, said that the prevention of “an unprecedented wave of evictions” is still necessary because even as vaccines have been rolled out, transmission rates of the coronavirus continue to be high.

“This 90-day extension will allow the assessment of natural changes to COVID-19 incidence, the influences of new variants, and the expansion of COVID-19 vaccine coverage to determine if there is a continued need for a national eviction moratorium,” the order, which is signed by Centers for Disease Control director Rochelle P. Walensky, reads.

The Centers for Disease Control first implemented its moratorium in September, and has extended it multiple times. To qualify for its protections, renters must submit a signed declaration form to their landlords stating under penalty of perjury that they fit the eligibility criteria, including that they’ve used best efforts to obtain government assistance for rent costs, make less than $99,000, have experienced a “substantial loss of household income” or had “extraordinary” out-of-pocket medical expenses, and that eviction would either render them homeless or force them to live in close quarters with other people.

The order cites a Census survey that found in early March, more than 4 million people were not current on their rent, creating a risk for people to move in with loved ones or into homeless shelters if they were evicted, and thereby increasing the spread of the coronavirus.

Additionally, restrictions being eased back in many places across the country “may continue to expose vulnerable populations ... to higher-than-average COVID-19 rates,” the order states.

In addition to extending the expiration date, the order makes a few slight policy modifications. It clarifies, for example, that renters do not need to re-submit declaration forms under this extension if they have already. It also explicitly states that renters may use a version of the declaration form translated into another language.

The extension does not, however, address some of the loopholes in the order’s protections, which have left some renters, especially those with month-to-month leases, still vulnerable to eviction.

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