Evictions Update: California Updates the Covid-19 Tenant Relief Act and Covid-19 Housing Recovery Act, effective April 1.

First, because the effective date of this evictions rule change corresponds with April Fools’ Day, I have to be clear: This is not a joke.

The California Assembly is expected to pass AB-2179 on March 30, 2022, as an emergency order. It extends protections to Tenants by changing notices that are required and increasing the burden on landlords to apply for assistance or assist tenants in applying for assistance. Here are some things that have not changed:

  • The definitions of COVID-19 related debt, protected time period, transition time period, and recovery period remain unchanged.
  • For debts incurred in the protected time period, the tenant need only pay 25% of the amounts due to avoid eviction.
  • Most of the COVID-19 Tenant Relief Act provisions that you have come to know and “love.”

Changes to Take Effect April 1

Here is what does change:

  • The text on notices demanding rent from the transition time period (between September 1, 2020, and September 30, 2021) has changed. Under the new text, the notice implies that a tenant who has paid in full through the protected time period may be able to avoid eviction because they paid more than 25% of what is due. There is no express statement of law to this fact and tenants are directed to a state agency to learn more about that option.
  • For notices demanding rent from the recovery period (between October 1, 2021, and March 31, 2022), tenants are advised that as long as they have filed a rent relief application before March 31, 2022, they may be able to avoid eviction.
  • All evictions based on rent will be denied unless the landlord has demonstrated that he or she applied to an appropriate government agency for rent relief on behalf of the tenant and been denied.
  • Evictions filed prior to April 1, 2022, where the landlord did not apply for rent relief are to be immediately denied.

While the notices become more complex, this does not dramatically change the eviction process. The COVID-19 Housing Recovery Act already required landlords to seek rental recovery assistance. If anything, this just shows how important it is to have a professional handle your evictions. The law changes so frequently that it is difficult to stay updated unless you do this work daily.

With respect to the recent post on how to evict as of March 2022, the core elements of that article about how to serve notice remain unchanged. The notices must include statutory language that is not covered in that article. For more information about the required notices, check out Code of Civil Procedure section 1179.10 and the sections that follow.

Who to Call for Kern County Evictions

If you have residential evictions in Kern County, call 661-325-1300 and schedule an appointment with Jared R. Clemence. This branch of Coleman & Horowitt LLP has been serving Bakersfield under various names for over 30 years. Jared (that’s me) is a Real Estate Broker and a Law Clerk, which makes real estate matters familiar to him.