By Tia Politi, ORHA President
The end is here! October 1, 2022, marks the return to normal for Landlords and Tenants alike regarding nonpayment of rent and other eligible charges. It also marks the end of the Safe Harbor Period Tenants have enjoyed if they provided written proof of Application for Rent Assistance to their Landlord on or after July 1, 2021, and before July 1, 2022.
On October 1, 2022, Landlords whose Tenant Applications have not been funded by September 30, 2022, can apply to...
These changes correspond to the 2022-2023 ORHA Forms Manual. We hope you find these changes useful. For more information about this change or to access a cross reference between the old and new form numbers, please use the links below.
On December 13th, 2021, Oregon Legislature passed in the Second special session an extension to the moratorium on evictions for nonpayment for tenants who have applied for emergency rental assistance. The housing policy bill, known as Senate Bill 891, was the reason the Governor called the special session.
In this bill, tenants that apply for rental assistance and provide documentation to their landlord before June 30th, 2022, will have a safe harbor from eviction until September 30th, 2022, or until their application is canceled or denied. Oregon Housing and Community Services (OHCS) will prioritize those that applied before December 1st, 2021, and cancel applications of tenants that are not responding to their requests. OHCS is required to notify the landlord if a tenant is denied, or an application is canceled.
Additionally, in this bill is the extension of the requirement for a 10-Day or 13-Day Notice to Pay or Vacate for Nonpayment of Rent until Sept 30th, 2022. Landlords must send an updated version of the tenant protection letter with these nonpayment notices served after the date that SB 891 is signed into law by the Governor.
In another bill, Senate Bill 5561 is the budget companion bill to SB 891 which allocates $100 million to OHCS for rental assistance. $5 million was allocated to administrative costs to speed up the processing of rental assistance applications, and $10 million was added to the Landlord Guarantee Fund for landlords to recover lost funds due to canceled, denied or unprocessed rental assistance applications. Another $100 million was allocated for longer term rental assistance programs to be distributed through other local agencies.
Effective July 1, 2021, Senate Bill 278 requires that when serving a Notice for Nonpayment, the Landlord must include a notice about a Tenant’s rights to be protected from eviction. This notice must also be included with any court summons for eviction for nonpayment. “Nonpayment” means the nonpayment of a payment that is due to a Landlord, including a payment of Rent, Late Charges, utility or Service Charges or any other Charge or Fee as described in the Rental Agreement or ORS 90.140, 90.302, 90.315, 90.392, 90.394, 90.560 to90.584 or 90.630.
Penalties for mistakes made can be expensive, we recommend you consult an attorney before you take any action against your Tenants(s).
HB 4401 requires Housing Providers to send the Notice of Eviction Protection and the Tenant Declaration form under certain circumstances. During the new Grace Period, if a Housing provider serves a 72- or 144-hour Notice for Nonpayment (remember these are now 10- or 13-day notices through the end of June) for Current Rents Due, serves any Notice of Termination for Nonpayment of Rent or other Charges, or sends a Statement of Account indicating that the Tenant has through March 31, 2021 to pay amounts owing that accrued during the Emergency Period that ended December 31, 2020, these forms MUST be included.
Tenants must provide a signed declaration for household or tenancy declaring financial hardship, delivered to the Housing Provider in writing, email, text message or other method reasonably calculated to achieve receipt. If the declaration is provided to the Housing Provider, they are entitled to withhold payment and are not considered in default unless they fail to pay the balance by June 30, 2021.
Housing Providers are not required to send the Notice of Eviction Protection and the Tenant Declaration if they intend to allow their Tenants the full Grace Period through June 30, 2021.
On April 1st, the Governor issued Executive Order 20-13, enacting a moratorium on all "no-cause" and "Landlord-cause" evictions and evictions for nonpayment of Rent. EO 20-13 is set to expire at the end of June. On Friday, June 26th, the Oregon Legislature passed HB 4213, which extends the eviction moratorium on both residential and commercial evictions through September 30th, 2020.
Warning!!! The Governor's Executive Order (20-13) issued April 1, 2020 prohibits Landlords from serving a Notice to Terminate Tenancy for Nonpayment of Rent or filing an Eviction for Nonpayment of Rent. Do not serve a Notice for Nonpayment until the ban is lifted, doing so is a Class C misdemeanor punishable by a fine of up to $1250, 30 days in jail, or both.
We are removing both nonpayment notices from the ORHA Forms Store and will put them back up once you can use them again:
(NOT AVAILABLE FOR USE DURING COVID-19 PANDEMIC)
Form 4: 72-Hour Notice to Pay or Vacate for Nonpayment of Rent
Form 44: 144-Hour Notice to Pay or Vacate for Nonpayment of Rent
The crisis set in motion by the spread of the COVID-19 virus is causing ripple effects throughout our communities. In many cases, we will all experience a significant reduction in income due to cancelled events, closed schools and facilities as we attempt to thwart the spread.
While the government is taking various forms of action to reduce the impact on citizens and the economy in general, such as waiving the waiting week for employees to file for unemployment, tenant advocates are pleading for understanding from landlords during this uncertain time.
If you are a landlord and have renters whose livelihoods are significantly impacted, and you are financially able to defer rent and waive late fees for a period of time, we are offering a Landlord and Tenant Deferment Agreement free on the Oregon Rental Housing Association website (Forms Store): https://oregonrentalhousing.com.
Oregon landlords are advised to seek legal counsel prior to issuing either a notice of rent increase or notice of termination without cause. Please read the list of updated forms and the changes made to comply with the new law and help Oregon Landlords by clicking below.