Governor Andrew Cuomo signed an executive order on March 20, 2020 creating a 90-day moratorium on all residential and commercial evictions. In practice, this means that no one in New York State can be evicted from their rented property until at least June 20, 2020. The purpose of the moratorium is to ensure people can remain in their homes and properties during the coronavirus outbreak, limiting the spread of the disease.
The coronavirus, also called COVID-19, is a dangerous disease that can cause severe respiratory problems for anyone who becomes infected. Additionally, it is very infectious, able to spread through the air, on contaminated surfaces and through physical contact with an infected person or their bodily fluids. Attempts to curtail the spread of the disease have led to numerous extreme measures, such as closing many public meeting areas and limiting restaurants to take-out and delivery only. As a result, many people are now out of work. Thus, there was a significant fear that landlords would commence evictions against their tenants while many people were out of work due to the closing of many businesses.
The moratorium prevents landlords from legally evicting someone in New York while the moratorium is in effect. While tenants will still owe rent for this period, they can remain in their rented space for its duration, regardless of their ability to pay rent. However, there may still be unscrupulous landlords who attempt to illegally force tenants out of their apartments or commercial spaces during the moratorium, so they can free it up for people who are able to pay rents. If that happens, you should seek legal representation immediately to discuss your options.
If you have questions regarding your rights as a landlord or tenant, you should seek advice from an attorney experienced in handling landlord/tenant disputes. Contact the skilled landlord-tenant attorneys at Hobson-Williams, P.C. Please contact us online, toll-free (866) 825-1529 or (718) 210-4744 to discuss your rights and the solutions available to you.