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  • Court rules CDC eviction moratorium unconstitutional

    Courts

    On February 25, the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Texas granted plaintiffs’ motion for summary judgment, ruling that decisions to enact eviction moratoriums rest with the states and that the federal government’s Article I power under the U.S. Constitution to regulate interstate commerce and enact necessary and proper laws to that end “does not include the power” to order all evictions be stopped during the Covid-19 pandemic. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) issued an eviction moratorium order last September (set to expire March 31), which “generally makes it a crime for a landlord or property owner to evict a ‘covered person’ from a residence” provided certain criteria are met. The CDC’s order grants the DOJ authority to initiate criminal proceedings and allows the imposition of fines up to $500,000. The plaintiffs—owners/managers of residential properties located in Texas—argued that the federal government does not have the authority under Article I to order property owners to not evict specified tenants, and that the decision as to whether an eviction moratorium should be enacted resides with the given state. The CDC countered that Article I afforded it the power to enact a nationwide moratorium, and argued, among other things, that “evictions covered by the CDC order may be rationally viewed as substantially affecting interstate commerce because 15% of changes in residence each year are between States.”

    However, the court disagreed stating that the CDC’s “statistic does not readily bear on the effects of the eviction moratorium” at issue, and that moreover, “[i]f statistics like that were enough, Congress could also justify national marriage and divorce laws, as similar incidental effects on interstate commerce exist in that field.” The court determined that the CDC’s eviction moratorium exceeds Congress’ powers under the Commerce Clause and the Necessary and Proper Clause. “The federal government cannot say that it has ever before invoked its power over interstate commerce to impose a residential eviction moratorium,” the court wrote. “It did not do so during the deadly Spanish Flu pandemic. . . .Nor did it invoke such a power during the exigencies of the Great Depression. [] The federal government has not claimed such a power at any point during our Nation’s history until last year.”

    The DOJ issued a statement on February 27 announcing its decision to appeal the court’s decision, citing that the court’s order “‘does not extend beyond the particular plaintiffs in that case, and it does not prohibit the application of the CDC’s eviction moratorium to other parties. For other landlords who rent to covered persons, the CDC’s eviction moratorium remains in effect.’”

    Courts Covid-19 CDC State Issues Constitution Evictions

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  • Illinois reissues and extends several Covid-19 executive orders

    State Issues

    On February 5, the governor of Illinois issued Executive Order 2021-04, which extends several executive orders through March 6, 2021 (previously covered hereherehere, here, and here). Among other things, the order extends: (i) Executive Order 2020-07 regarding in-person meeting requirements, (ii) Executive Order 2020-23 regarding actions by individuals licensed by the Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation engaged in disaster response, (iii) Executive Order 2020-25 regarding garnishment and wage deductions (previously covered here), (iv) Executive Order 2020-30 regarding residential evictions (previously covered here), and (v) Executive Order 2020-72 regarding the residential eviction moratorium (previously covered here and here).

    State Issues Covid-19 Illinois Debt Collection Evictions Mortgages

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  • VA extends Covid-19 foreclosure and eviction moratorium

    Federal Issues

    On January 29, the Department of Veterans Affairs issued Circular 26-21-2, which further extends foreclosure and eviction relief for borrowers affected by Covid-19 (previously covered here). Specifically, all properties secured by VA-guaranteed loans, including those previously secured by VA-guaranteed loans but currently in the VA’s REO (real estate owned) portfolio, are subject to a moratorium on foreclosure and eviction through March 31, 2021. With the exception of abandoned or vacant property, the moratorium applies to the initiation of foreclosures, the completion of foreclosures in process, and evictions.

    Federal Issues Covid-19 Department of Veterans Affairs Military Lending Foreclosure Mortgages Evictions

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  • Illinois reissues and extends several Covid-19 executive orders

    State Issues

    On January 8, the governor of Illinois issued Executive Order 2021-01 extending numerous executive orders through February 6, 2021 (previously covered here, hereherehere, and here). Among other things, the order extends: (i) Executive Order 2020-07 regarding in-person meeting requirements, (ii) Executive Order 2020-23 regarding actions by individuals licensed by the Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation engaged in disaster response, (iii) Executive Order 2020-25 regarding garnishment and wage deductions (previously covered here), (iv) Executive Order 2020-30 regarding residential evictions (previously covered here and here).

    State Issues Covid-19 Illinois Regulation Debt Collection Mortgages Evictions

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  • New York enacts moratorium on Covid-related evictions and foreclosures

    State Issues

    On December 28, the New York enacted the Covid-19 Emergency Eviction and Foreclosure Prevention Act of 2020 (see the press release here). Among other things, the act imposes a moratorium on residential evictions for tenants that experienced Covid-related hardships through May 1, 2021, in addition to mandating specific disclosures regarding evictions. It also suspends residential foreclosures until May 1, 2021, enabling Covid-impacted homeowners and landlords with 10 or fewer residential dwellings to file hardship declarations with their mortgage lender to prevent foreclosure. The act also contains provisions prohibiting certain tax lien sales and Covid-related discrimination by lenders.

    State Issues Covid-19 New York Mortgages Evictions Foreclosure

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  • VA re-extends foreclosure and eviction moratorium for borrowers affected by Covid-19

    Federal Issues

    On December 28, the Department of Veterans Affairs issued Circular 26-20-40, which further extends foreclosure and eviction relief for borrowers affected by Covid-19 (previously covered here). Specifically, all properties secured by VA-guaranteed loans, including those previously secured by VA-guaranteed loans but currently in the VA’s REO (real estate owned) portfolio, are subject to a moratorium on foreclosure and eviction through February 28, 2021. With the exception of abandoned or vacant property, the moratorium applies to the initiation of foreclosures, the completion of foreclosures in process and evictions.

    Federal Issues Covid-19 Department of Veterans Affairs Military Lending Foreclosure Evictions Mortgages

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  • Nevada governor issues an emergency directive regarding evictions

    State Issues

    On December 14, the governor of Nevada issued Declaration of Emergency Directive 036, relating to the implementation of Senate Bill 1 (previously covered here). The directive provides that, effective December 15 through March 31, 2021, certain residential unlawful detainer or summary eviction actions against covered persons are stayed. Emergency Directives 008, 025, and 031 (covered herehere, and here) had previously prohibited such evictions through October 14.

    State Issues Covid-19 Nevada Mortgages Evictions

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  • Illinois reissues and extends several Covid-19 executive orders

    State Issues

    On December 11, the governor of Illinois issued Executive Order 2020-74, which extends several executive orders through January 9, 2021 (previously covered hereherehere, and here). Among other things, the order extends: (i) Executive Order 2020-07 regarding in-person meeting requirements, (ii) Executive Order 2020-23 regarding actions by individuals licensed by the Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation engaged in disaster response, (iii) Executive Order 2020-25 regarding garnishment and wage deductions (previously covered here), (iv) Executive Order 2020-30 regarding residential evictions (previously covered here and here), and (v) Executive Order 2020-72 regarding the residential eviction moratorium (previously covered here, herehere, and here).

    State Issues Covid-19 Illinois Debt Collection Mortgages Evictions

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  • Illinois extends prohibition on residential evictions

    State Issues

    On November 13, the Illinois governor issued Executive Order 2020-72 further extending the state’s prohibition on residential evictions (previously covered here, here, and here).

    State Issues Covid-19 Illinois Evictions Mortgages

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  • New York governor extends suspension of eviction orders

    State Issues

    On October 20, the New York governor issued an executive order extending the state’s moratorium on commercial evictions and foreclosures related to Covid-19 until January 1, 2021. For previous coverage, see here, here and here.

    State Issues Covid-19 New York Mortgages Evictions Foreclosure

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