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Confused about your options regarding the CDC’s eviction moratorium? Here’s what you need to know

The new deadline is Oct. 3

Tenants who are behind on their rent now have a little bit more time and more options.
Tenants who are behind on their rent now have a little bit more time and more options.

LYNCHBURG, Va. – The CDC’s extending the eviction moratorium yet again.

The government pushed the federal program back multiple times during the pandemic, becoming a stressful situation for tenants behind on rent.

Jeremy White, managing attorney at the Virginia Legal Aid Society’s Lynchburg office, is helping people understand their options ahead of the Oct. 3 deadline.

“For us, it’s, ‘What tools do we have in our toolbelt? What do we need to tell tenants on how to proceed?’” said White.

First, he’s telling tenants to be proactive.

“They have to find the CDC declaration online, print it out, get a copy and sign it and give it to their landlord. If a court case has been filed, they provide that to the court, as well,” said White.

The CDC narrowed the scope of the new moratorium. Instead of it applying to anyone across the country, it’s now geared toward areas with substantial COVID-19 rates. Most of the Commonwealth falls into that category.

White said if you signed a declaration to meet the previous July 31 deadline, you should get another one.

“The tenants need to resign because there is the new requirement about whether you’re in a moderate or high transmission area; I would suggest tenants go ahead and do a new declaration.”

Another step he’s suggesting is Virginia’s rent relief program, which helps pay landlords in three-month increments if tenants meet certain criteria. And, more people are eligible than they think.

“Even if you say, ‘Maybe the CDC moratorium doesn’t apply to me,’ that does not preclude you from applying and, probably, getting rent relief money. It’s much broader.”

If you need assistance, you can call the Virginia Legal Aid Society toll-free line at 866-534-5243 or the navigator who helps with the application process at 434-422-5161.

About the Author:

Tim Harfmann joined the 10 News team in September 2020 and works at the station's Lynchburg bureau.