Eviction Prevention

Coronavirus/COVID-19 updates

 

Federal moratorium

The U.S. Supreme Court has ruled to invalidate the federal eviction moratorium. This means that the federal eviction moratorium is no longer in effect. Some tenants may continue to be protected by state and local eviction moratoriums.  

New York State moratorium

The New York State eviction moratorium is in place until January 15, 2022. While tenants are still able to self-attest to experiencing a financial hardship in order to protect themselves from eviction, the new moratorium legislation allows landlords to request a housing court hearing to contest a tenant’s claim. This should not prevent you from filing a self-attestation if you are experiencing a financial hardship. As always we recommend tenants seek guidance from legal service providers if they feel they are at risk of eviction.

If  you applied for rental assistance through the New York State Emergency Rental Assistance Program you can’t be evicted while your application is being processed even if your landlord refuses to complete the application or submit necessary documents. You can still qualify on your own and you will be protected from eviction for a year if you qualify.

Eviction prevention

Facing eviction can be scary. Tenants should be aware that they do not need to vacate their apartments just because the landlord asks them to or because they receive notice of a court date .Tenants have a right to go to Housing Court to respond to the landlord’s eviction case and may have defenses available to them that will allow them to remain in their homes. Whenever possible, tenants should consult with an attorney if they have received an eviction notice.

Homebase, operated by NYC Human Resources Adminstration, helps individuals facing eviction and/or homelessness to apply for short-term emergency funding, assistance obtaining benefits, financial counseling, landlord and family mediation, employment services/referrals, and linkages to community resources. Services are provided by community organizations located throughout the five boroughs. Visit Homebase to find a Homebase location near you and information in several languages.

Free legal services funded by New York City’s Office of Civil Justice are available as follows:

Anti-Eviction Legal Services are offered in the housing courts and in community offices across the City. They are free, comprehensive, flexible, and individualized to help low-income households avoid eviction and homelessness.

Services may include:

  • Representation in housing court
  • Negotiations with landlords and/or other advocacy assistance
  • Inquiries into whether a tenant’s rent level is correct, whether there are conditions that require repair and whether these constitute defenses to a proceeding
  • Preparation and filing of required agency and court papers

These services are free and you do not have to be an HRA client to apply. If you need legal help with an eviction, please find the Anti-Eviction Legal Services location nearest you here, or by dialing 311 or by emailing civiljustice@hra.nyc.gov.

Right to Counsel provides free legal representation for tenants who are sued for eviction in housing court and in NYCHA termination of tenancy hearings. The city is now assigning Right to Counsel attorneys to all cases that are moving forward in Housing Court, regardless of income, where you live or immigration status. Tenants with notices of upcoming court dates in eviction cases should reach out to get an attorney. Click here for the Right to Counsel website which has information on how to get an attorney assigned.

Free Legal Representation for Tenants Facing Landlord Harassment

The New York City Tenant Support Unit provides assistance to New Yorkers who may be experiencing landlord harassment, are at risk of displacement, or need to make home-related repairs. Tenant Support specialists assist tenants with accessing important City resources, such as free legal assistance. Click here for a list of neighborhoods where services are offered. 

If you live in one of the zip codes listed above and are experiencing housing-related issues, such as harassment, overcharges, or possible eviction, you can call 929-252-7104 Monday through Friday 11:00 am – 6:00 pm to speak with a Tenant Support Specialist. If you do not live in one of the designated neighborhoods and are experiencing any issues that threaten your housing situation, please call 311. If you have additional questions about available legal assistance, go to HRA’s legal assistance website.

Free Legal Representation for Immigration Legal Issues

A variety of free legal services programs for low-income immigrant New Yorkers in need of legal advice or representation in immigration matters are available. If you need legal help with an immigration issue, please visit the New York City Mayor’s Office of Immigrant Affairs website, dial 311 or email civiljustice@hra.nyc.gov.

Housing Court

To learn more about the Housing Court process visit Housing Court Answers or LawHelp.org’s portal which assists tenants with navigating the housing court process including sample forms and guides on how tenants can prepare to answer housing court cases.

Rental Arrears

Households with rental arrears or facing eviction may be eligible for additional rent subsidies and/or for money from certain grant sources. In order to receive help paying for rental arrears, the tenant facing eviction will need to establish that he or she is able to pay rent and maintain the apartment in the future. Resources for eviction prevention include:

  • “One-Shot-Deals,” which are emergency grants from Public Assistance may also be available. To apply for an emergency grant, the tenant needs to bring documentation and explanation of the arrears and will need to provide proof of the ability to pay rent for the apartment in the future. This paperwork should be brought to the tenant’s nearest job center (public assistance office). Find your nearest job center here.
  • Family Homelessness Eviction Prevention Supplement (FHEPS) may be available to those facing eviction and receiving public assistance. FHEPS applications can be filed through Legal Aid’s borough offices and specific community-based organizations in each borough.

Tenants residing in NYCHA Public Housing or Section 8 apartments cannot be evicted solely because of their status as a domestic violence victim due to protections offered under the Violence Against Women Act regardless of the gender of the victim or perpetrator.

Tenants of rent stabilized apartments who are victims of domestic violence and need to temporarily flee their apartments due to the violence cannot be evicted due to not using the apartment as their primary residence if the reason for their absence from the apartment is due to the abuse.

Additional Resources

The NYC Mayor’s Office to Protect Tenants has an online resource portal that offers resources and can help you to determine what your next steps should be. Click here to go to the online portal.

If a City Marshal tries to evict you: Call NYC Department of Investigation (DOI) Bureau of City Marshals at (212) 825-5953.

For information regarding emergency repair or other housing related legal actions: Visit www.nycourts.gov or call (833) 503-0447 (toll-free).

Housing Court Questions: Housing Court Answers, call 212-962-4795 or 718-557-1379.

Fill out this form to report discrimination.

For general questions regarding housing rights and protections: Call the Legal Aid Society at (212) 577-3300.