The Oregon Legislature closed out 2020 with its third special session of the year, passing four bills aimed to provide relief to Oregonians affected by the COVID-19 pandemic and wildfires. The contents of those bills are summarized below.
HB 4401: Residential Eviction Moratorium and Landlord Assistance
- Directs Oregon Housing and Community Services (OHCS) to provide grants to landlords for 80 percent of unpaid rent between April 1, 2020 and June 30, 2021, provided that landlords complete an application detailing all unpaid rent from qualified tenants and an agreement to forgive 20 percent of the outstanding unpaid rent.
- Directs OHCS to distribute rent assistance to recipients of CARES Act Grants, who will make payments directly to landlords upon tenant’s applications.
- Prohibits eviction without cause until June 30, 2021. Requires landlord to provide tenant with notice of their right to submit a declaration of financial hardship, which must be made under penalty of perjury. Requires court to dismiss eviction action before end of grace period based solely on nonpayment of rent if tenant declares financial hardship or landlord fails to provide tenant with notice of rights.
- For tenants declaring financial hardship:
- Extends emergency period, end of grace period, and prohibits eviction for nonpayment until June 30, 2021.
- Requires payment of past due rent by July 1, 2021.
- Prohibits landlords from charging late fees for nonpayment of rent between April 1, 2020 and June 30, 2021.
- For tenants not declaring financial hardship:
- Extends emergency period to December 31, 2020 and extends grace period to March 31, 2021.
- Prohibits eviction for nonpayment until March 31, 2021.
- Requires payment of past due rent by March 31, 2021.
- Prohibits landlord from charging late fees for nonpayment of rent between April 1, 2020 and March 31, 2021.