NEW YORK EXTENDS MORATORIUM ON EVICTIONS AND FORECLOSURES
On May 4, 2021, Governor Andrew Cuomo signed 2021 N.Y. SB 6362A. The Act amends chapter 381 of the 2020 laws establishing the “COVID-19 Emergency Eviction and Foreclosure Prevention Act of 2020,” as well as chapter 73 of the 2021 laws establishing the “COVID-19 Emergency Protect Our Small Business Act of 2021.”
2021 N.Y. SB 6362A extends through August 31, 2021, the moratorium on evictions for residential and commercial tenants who are experiencing financial hardship. However, to gain the protection of the moratorium, residential tenants must submit a hardship declaration to their landlords. A landlord who receives a hardship declaration from a tenant cannot initiate any eviction proceeding against that tenant until after August 31, 2021. If a proceeding is already in progress, tenants must submit the hardship declaration to the court as well. Thereafter, the court will stay the eviction proceeding until after August 31, 2021.
There is, however, an exception to the moratorium. Tenants who “persistently and unreasonably engag[e] in behavior that substantially infringes on the use and enjoyment of other tenants or occupants or causes a substantial safety hazard to others” will still be subject to eviction (2021 N.Y. SB 6362A(1)).
The Act also extends the moratorium on foreclosures for mortgagors and commercial tenants. Mortgagors must own ten (10) or fewer residential dwellings. Commercial tenants must be residents of the state, be independently owned and operated, not dominant in their field, and employ fifty (50) or fewer employees. Like residential tenants, mortgagors and commercial tenants must file the required hardship declaration with their lender or landlord respectively to benefit from the extended moratorium.
Additional key language in the amended Act has also been modified. If a respondent provides a hardship declaration in an eviction proceeding where a warrant has not yet been issued, the matter will be stayed until August 31, 2021. Courts are prohibited from entering judgment authorizing a warrant of eviction against respondents who have defaulted prior to August 31, 2021, without first have a default hearing upon motion of the petitioner after the effective date of the Act. They are also prohibited from authorizing the enforcement of an eviction resulting from a default judgment prior to August 31, 2021, without having a default hearing first. If an eviction warrant was issued before the effective date of the Act but has not been executed as of the date of the Act, the Court is required to stay the execution pending a status conference. If at the status conference the respondent provides a hardship declaration, then the execution will be stayed to August 31, 2021.
If you have any questions about how any of how the extended moratorium might affect you, your business, or your residents, feel free to contact us. Our attorneys, at Griffin Alexander, P.C., are experienced in landlord-tenant law, and how the new COVID‑19 protocols and extended moratorium affect landlords throughout the State.
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 on particular circumstances. Each legal matter is unique, and prior results do not guarantee a similar outcome.
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