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 a new statewide law that protects tenants from being evicted due to inability to pay rent through February 1, 2021. Under this legislation, no tenant can be evicted as a result of rent owed from a COVID-19 related hardship between March 4 to August 31, 2020, if the tenant provides a declaration of hardship according to the legislation’s timelines. For unpaid rent related to hardship between September 1, 2020 to January 31, 2021, tenants must pay at least 25 percent of the rent due to avoid eviction.

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, 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.

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.