ATTENTION LANDLORDS AND TENANTS
EMERGENCY EVICTION EXTENDED
Despite successful re-opening of the economy , and leaving the majority of COVID-19 restrictions in the past, New York continues to take proactive steps in protecting those financially effected by COVID-19. On May 4, 2021 Governor Cuomo signed a bill extending both the Emergency Eviction and Foreclosure Prevention Act of 2020 (“EEFPA”) and Emergency Protect Our Small Businesses Act of 2021 (“SBA”).
Both the EEFPA and SBA have been extended through August 31, 2021.
In order for residential tenants to avail themselves of the protections set forth in the EEFPA, tenants must provide their landlord or the court with a signed Hardship Declaration. Once received, a landlord cannot initiate an eviction proceeding based on non-payment of rent or holdover after lease expiration until August 31, 2021. However, this does not prevent the tenant from being evicted for “unreasonably engaging in behavior that substantially infringes on the quiet use and enjoyment of other tenants or if tenant is causing a substantial threat to the health and/or safety of others.”
If an eviction proceeding has previously been filed with the court, including those initiated before March 7, 2020, but a warrant of eviction has not yet been issued by the court, a tenant can submit a Hardship Declaration to the petitioner, the court, or an agent of the petitioner or the court, and the eviction proceeding will be stayed until August 31, 2021.
With respect to the SBA extension, its protections still only apply to commercial tenants who independently own and operate their business, have 50 or less employees, and experience financial hardship and are unable to pay the rent or other financial obligations under the lease in full or obtain an alternative suitable commercial property as a result of significant loss of revenue during the pandemic, significant increase in necessary expenses related to providing PPE to employees or purchasing and installing other protective equipment related to preventing transmission, and/or monthly expenses and difficulty in securing alternative commercial property.
In sum, by submitting the Hardship Declaration before the warrant is issued, the eviction will be stayed until August 31.
This is not intended to be legal advice. You should contact an attorney for advice regarding your specific situation.