Renters

The City of Los Angeles is providing eviction protection to assist residential and commercial tenants who have been economically impacted by the coronavirus pandemic. Learn more about your rights below.

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Gov. Gavin Newsom signed an executive order barring landlords, police and courts from enforcing eviction notices until May 31. The order took effect on April 1. The Judicial Council adopted eviction rules as well on April 6.

The order only applies to tenants who are not already behind on their payments. The following rules apply:

  • Tenants still owe rent. If you can afford to pay it, you should.
  • If you cannot pay all of your rent, you should be aware that your landlord can still file an eviction case against you, but the case will not proceed until at least 90 days following the end of the state of emergency.
  • Local measures may offer additional protection, since they remain in effect following the Governor’s executive order. Research local eviction moratoriums that may apply in your area.

Facts for Tenants Unable to Pay Rent Due to COVID-19

Neither the recent Judicial Council’s emergency eviction rule nor the Governor’s order stops landlords from filing eviction cases. But, during the ongoing state of emergency and for 90 days after it is lifted, the Judicial Council rule prevents new eviction cases from proceeding, except where a court determines that eviction is necessary to protect public health and safety. Specifically, the Judicial Council’s rule prevents courts from issuing a summons, which is a document landlords need to serve on tenants in order to start the clock on the tenant’s time to respond. Courts will also not enter judgment against tenants for failure to appear. Additionally, eviction trials in existing cases will be delayed for at least 60 days.

Under the Governor’s executive order, until May 31, qualifying tenants who retain documentation to prove their inability to pay rent and timely notify their landlords that they cannot do so are protected against lockout by the sheriff.

Tenants who receive an eviction notice or lawsuit and need legal guidance should contact their local legal aid organization, which can be found here.

Emergency Renters Assistance Program

To assist tenants and landlords affected by the pandemic, City leaders created the Emergency Rental Assistance Subsidy Program to provide a temporary rent subsidy for tenants in the City of Los Angeles who are unable to pay rent due to the pandemic. The program allocates $103 million to provide a rent subsidy (a maximum of $2,000 per household). The Los Angeles Housing + Community Investment Department (HCIDLA) is charged with the implementation of the Emergency Rental Assistance Subsidy Program.

Apply for the Emergency Rental Assistance Subsidy Program here. Applications open July 13, 8 a.m.

Summary of renter protections

Los Angeles has tenant protections in place to help prevent displacement of its residents that are renters. On March 23, the Mayor issued an emergency order to strengthen protections for residential and commercial tenants in the City of Los Angeles. Also announced was a moratorium on LADWP shutoffs for non-payment that would remain in effect indefinitely.

  • No owner can evict a residential tenant for nonpayment of rent if the tenant is unable to pay rent due to circumstance related to the COVID-19, such as:
    • Loss of income due to workplace closure or reduced hours due to COVID-19
      • Loss of income or increased child care expenditures due to school closures
    • Health care expenditures stemming from COVID-19 infection of the tenant or a member of the tenant’s household who is ill with COVID-19
    • Reasonable expenditures stemming from government ordered emergency measures.

Tenants are still obligated to pay lawfully charged rent.

However, during the emergency period, tenants may not be evicted for failure to pay rent due to the financial impacts related to COVID-19. Tenants will have up to 12 months following the expiration of the local emergency to repay any back rent due. On March 30, 2020, the City Council extended the repayment period from 6 to 12 months.

  • No property owner shall exercise a No-fault Eviction during the Local Emergency Period. No-Fault evictions means those not based on an alleged fault of the tenant.
  • No property owner may withdraw an occupied residential unit from the rental housing market under the Ellis Act.
  • Landlords may not evict tenants due to the presence of unauthorized occupants, pets or nuisance related to COVID-19.
  • Landlords may not charge interest or late fees on unpaid rent due to COVID-19.

Landlords are required to give written notice of the renter protections to tenants within 30 days of March 31, 2020.

For more information, click here or call (866) 557-7368.

More legal and eviction resources

For a list of additional resources for tenants, click here.