By Sam DeBaltzo
Oregon House Bill 4213, as extended by Governor Kate Brown’s Executive Order 20-56, currently prohibits eviction of residential tenants for non-payment of rent through December 31, 2020, as previously discussed. However, with COVID-19 raging on and Governor Brown recently issuing a two-week statewide “freeze,” many have expected the eviction prohibitions to be extended further.
In response, the Oregon Legislature is meeting to discuss an extension to the ban on residential evictions through June 2021. Affected landlords will appreciate a proposed landlord-based compensation fund, which would allow landlords to apply for rent assistance on behalf of their tenants. Under the current proposal, smaller landlords and those with higher percentages of unpaid rent would receive priority, and would have to forgive 20% of past-due rents. Also, tenants would have to submit a sworn statement of financial hardship caused by COVID to qualify for the extended eviction protection.
Landlords have received protection from foreclosure through December 31, 2020, but the Oregon Legislature proposal would allow them to start recouping funds for tenants that cannot pay. Time will tell whether the proposal turns into law.
For this and other up-to-date information on the various legal impact of the coronavirus, please reach out to the attorney you regularly work with.