CDC Moratorium Struck Down, Again!
Good news for landlords and property owners, sort of. In the last few months, at least six courts have struck down the Center for Disease Control’s (“CDC”) moratorium on evictions for constitutional violations. Now, the D.C. District Court has struck down the CDC’s ban on evictions. Citing to the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals (Tennessee, Kentucky, Ohio, and Michigan) decision that the CDC has exceeded its authority, the D.C. Circuit Court judge, Dabney L. Friedrich, stated “[T]he Department’s interpretation (of its own authority) goes too far” and that “[C]ongress did not express a clear intent to grant the Secretary such sweeping authority.”
In making this ruling against the CDC’s moratorium, the Court has become the seventh court to strike down this moratorium as unconstitutionally broad and an overreach of the CDC’s authority.
So where does that leave the landlords and property owners?
Unfortunately, the Department of Justice has appealed the ruling and it will likely take months before the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals will rule on it. Thus, the moratorium will remain in place and Judge Friedrich has put her decision on hold until May 12 to give landlords time to file papers opposing a longer delay.
It has become clear, at least through the Federal Courts, that this CDC moratorium on evictions is overly broad and exceeds the CDC’s authority. However, this ruling may not be binding on state court judges. Thus, the quagmire of this eviction moratorium continues to be a difficult issue to navigate. In the meantime, it is prudent to continue to encourage tenants to seek rental assistance through the various programs available to them. Moreover, it is prudent for Landlords and property owners to seek any assistance available to them as well.
Brian T. Boyd, JD, LLM, www.BoydLegal.co
Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed in this blog post are provided for informational purposes only, and should not be construed as an offer to buy or sell any securities or to make or consider any investment or course of action.