Eviction Moratoriums Rescinded After Landlords Threaten Lawsuits

While a statewide eviction moratorium is still in place, the example of Upland in Southern California suggests that local eviction moratoriums might not withstand legal controversies.

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April 21, 2020, 8:00 AM PDT

By James Brasuell @CasualBrasuell


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"In a complete reversal, the Upland City Council this week repealed its ordinance that protected commercial and residential tenants from evictions during the novel coronavirus pandemic," reports Steve Scauzillo.

"Out of 127 California cities and counties that have passed such measures, Upland and one other, the city of Duarte in eastern Los Angeles County, have rescinded eviction moratoriums, according to data compiled by the California Apartment Owners Association."

Upland city officials made the decision to rescind after lawyers for local landlords sent a letter threatening to sue the city over the eviction moratorium approved on March 31. 

"A letter from attorney Douglas J. Dennington says his clients, which include owners of several large apartment complexes in the city, will incur millions of dollars in losses from non-payment of rents and that they will sue the city to recover lost revenues and legal fees," reports Scauzillo.

Upland tenants are not entirely without protections, however. The state of California still has an eviction moratorium in place, with backing from the state's Judicial Council. The article describes the potential for local governments to encounter a "legal morass" when duplicating or expand the statewide moratorium. Even the League of California Cities is choosing not to advise cities on what tenant protection policies to enact during the pandemic.

Friday, April 17, 2020 in Daily Bulletin

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