LA County extends eviction moratorium through 2022

Latest measure adds to hodgepodge of pandemic-era laws

Los Angeles /
Feb.February 04, 2022 12:29 PM
Supervisor Sheila Kuehl (LA County)

Los Angeles County has extended its pandemic-related eviction moratorium through the end of the year, with some protections slated to last until mid-2023.

County supervisors approved the latest extension of the controversial renter protections at a meeting last week by a vote of four to one. The extension was necessary, the majority of the board argued, because many county residents continue to face financial hardship wrought by a pandemic that has now dragged on for two years and continues to infect Angelenos.

“I’m very happy to see our businesses reporting and people going back to work,” Supervisor Sheila Kuehl said. “But the 250,000 people who became infected in the last seven days most likely do not have sick leave. And so when they have to quarantine … they are not earning money, because they’re not being paid for being sick.”

The measure broadly applies to residential landlords and tenants throughout L.A. County, but it also has some nuances. “No-fault” evictions — whereby landlords evict tenants for any reason with appropriate notice — are barred until April. Beginning that month, renters who fail to pay rent and self-certify pandemic-caused financial hardship are protected from evictions, but beginning in June that protection only applies to lower income tenants. The lower-income protection applies through June 2023. The latest extension also keeps in place a rent hike freeze through the end of 2022.

The regulations add to what’s been a hodgepodge of city, county, state and federal renter protections: In the City of Los Angeles, a parallel eviction moratorium, tied to a local emergency order, also remains in place, even though California’s state moratorium expired on Sept. 30. A federal moratorium also expired last summer.

The various protections, while championed by many tenant organizations, have been aggressively fought by landlords, many of whom are also struggling financially and who feel they’ve been unfairly targeted by government intervention programs.

In the most recent vote, the lone dissenting L.A. County supervisor, Kathryn Barger, emphasized the financial harm borne by property owners and argued that the local economy has largely remained open. “Landlords are saying enough is enough,” she said.

The Apartment Association of Greater Los Angeles, a leading landlord advocacy group, has also been fighting the City of L.A.’s tenant protections in court — a protracted legal challenge that’s also highlighted the growing fissure between many tenants and landlords.

“It is, but for the shooting, a war in every real sense,” one district judge noted as part of an opinion related to the challenge. “Hundreds of thousands of tenants pitted against tens of thousands of landlords — that is the tragedy that brings us here.”

AAGLA’s case was rejected by a federal appeals judge but last month edged closer to a potential hearing before the Supreme Court.





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