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BILL PASSED IN NEW JERSEY REGARDING WHEN TENANTS ARE REQUIRED TO MAKE PAYMENTS AFTER EVICTION AND/OR LOCKOUT

January 17, 2020 Posted in Landlord/Tenant Law

A new bill titled NJ S3124, was signed into law by Governor Phil Murphy on January 13, 2020. This bill requires landlords to allow tenants to pay rent up to three business days after an eviction order or lockout is executed and requires landlords to accept rent payments by any means.

Specifically, in an eviction action for non-payment of rent, the court shall provide a period of three business days after the date on which a warrant of removal is posted to the unit or a lockout is executed, for the tenant to submit a rent payment. A late fee shall not be imposed in excess of the amount set forth in the application for a warrant of removal if all rent due and owing is paid within the three-business day period.

Pursuant to the bill, a landlord shall accept all payments of rent made by a tenant within the three-business day period and upon payment of the rent due and owing, within two business days after, the landlord must provide the court, and a copy to the tenant, a written notice that the rent due and owing was paid. Upon receipt of that notice, the court will dismiss the non-payment action with prejudice.

If the tenant makes a timely payment within the three-business day period established above, and the landlord fails to provide the court with written notice of the rent payment, the tenant may file a motion to dismiss the non-payment of rent action with prejudice.

Further, a landlord shall accept a rent payment within the three-business day period, whether made by cash, certified check, or money order through any federal, State, or local rental assistance program or bona fide charitable organization on behalf of the tenant. If the landlord does not respond to the tenant’s efforts to resolve the issue of late payment through a third party, the tenant may seek remedy by requesting an Order to Show Cause. After each rent payment is made within the three-business day period, the landlord must provide the tenant with a receipt which shall include the date the payment was made.

A landlord in violation of any provision of this new law shall be subject to a penalty of not more than $500.00 for each offense. This act will take effect on the first day of the second month next following enactment.

 

The information in this Client Alert is provided solely for information purposes. It should not be construed as legal advice on any specific matter and is not intended to create an attorney-client relationship. The information provided herein may not be applicable in all situations and should not be acted upon without specific legal advice based upon particular circumstances.  Each legal matter is unique, and prior results do not guarantee a similar outcome.

 

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