Texas Tenants Are Still Struggling To Stop Evictions A Month After Federal Moratorium Was Announced

October 7, 2020

The CDC’s moratorium doesn’t automatically stop evictions. Tenants have to sign a declaration stating they have sought government assistance and tried to pay their landlords as much rent as they can, among other requirements. Landlords can still take tenants to court to contest the eviction protections.

Since Sept. 17, information about the moratorium and a copy of the declaration should be included in the paperwork Texans receive once eviction proceedings against them begin. But Murray’s eviction case began before the Texas Supreme Court ordered that those written notifications and declarations should be given to tenants.

According to Nelson Mock, a housing attorney for Texas RioGrande Legal Aid, the Texas Supreme Court’s order about giving tenants information on the moratorium left it to justices of the peace to ask tenants if they have signed the CDC order, even if their case was filed before the moratorium.

“It doesn’t compel the judge to say something, but it makes it very clear the judge can do it,” Mock said.

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