Supreme Court Leaves CDC Eviction Moratorium in Place

In a 5-4 vote, the Supreme Court is leaving a CDC nationwide ban on evictions due to COVID-19 in place.

The Court rejected the request by a Landlord group, led by the Alabama Association of Realtors, to end the CDC moratorium on evicting millions of tenants who are not paying rent during the pandemic. Last week, the Biden Administration extended the moratorium until July 31. It is unlikely to be extended past that date.

A federal judge in Washington, DC had struck down the moratorium as exceeding the CDC’s authority, but put her ruling on hold. The vote by the high court will keep the ban in place until the end of July.

In a brief opinion, Justice Brett Kavanaugh said that while he agrees with the ruling of the DC judge, he voted to leave the ban on evictions in place because it is due to end in a month and that time will allow for “more orderly distribution of the congressionally appropriated rental assistance funds.”

Also last week, the Treasury Department issued updated guidance for the Emergency Rental Assistance Program (ERAP) encouraging states and local governments to streamline the distribution of the $46.5 billion in ERA funding.

Chief Justice John Roberts and the court’s three liberal members also voted to keep the moratorium in place.

The eviction ban was initially put in place last year to provide protection for renters out of concern that having families lose their homes and move into shelters or share crowded spaces with friends or relatives during the pandemic would increase the spread of the disease.

According to HUD, at the end of March 2021, 6.4 million American households were behind on their rent. As of June 7, according to the U.S. Census Bureau’s Household Pulse Survey, about 3.2 million people in the U.S. said they face eviction in the next two months.