In a first-of-its-kind action, the Department of Housing & Urban Development (HUD) has awarded $20 million in grants from its Eviction Protection Grant Program. These grants are being awarded to legal service providers to assist their efforts in providing legal assistance to low-income tenants at risk or subject to eviction.
HUD has selected ten organizations for this first award. Those organizations are –
- Advocates for Basic Legal Equality – Toledo, OH;
- Atlanta Volunteer Lawyers Foundation – Atlanta, GA;
- Community Legal Aid, Inc. – Worcester, MA;
- Connecticut Fair Housing Center – Hartford, CT;
- Idaho Legal Aid Services – Boise, ID;
- Jacksonville Area Legal Aid, Inc. – Jacksonville, FL;
- Legal Aid Center of Southern Nevada – Las Vegas, NV;
- Legal Aid Society of Northeastern New York – Albany, NY;
- Legal Assistance of Western New York, Inc. – Geneva, NY; and
- Legal Services of Eastern Missouri – St. Louis, MO
Individual grants ranged from $1 million to $2.4 million.
This program was created due to studies that show a resident’s chance of being evicted is much greater if they lack legal representation. A study in Minnesota found that fully represented tenants win or settle cases 96% of the time and clients receiving limited representation win or settle their cases 83% of the time. Tenants without representation win or settle just 62% of the time.
Properties in the areas noted above should expect more eviction challenges in the months ahead.