Local Eviction Moratorium Update

Industry News,

Local eviction moratoriums have remained ever present in Los Angeles County, and cities including Los Angeles, Beverly Hills, Pasadena, and Santa Monica.

City of Los Angeles

On March 1, 2022, the Los Angeles City Council once again extended their local emergency for another 30 days and through that extension, the City’s eviction moratorium and rent increase freeze ordinances carry-on as these ordinances’ expiration are directly tied to the expiration of the local emergency. Councilmembers Buscaino and Lee maintained their opposition to the extension.

There has also been recent action on these matters by the City’s Ad Hoc Committee on COVID-19 Recovery and Neighborhood Investment which instructed the City Administrative Officer, in combination with other City offices to, among other related matters, “provide recommendations on a plan for phasing out temporary COVID-19 policies and programs.” In addition to the Committee’s instruction, a motion was introduced by Council President Martinez and Councilmember Cedillo directing the City’s Housing Department to report back in 30 days “on recommendations and possible amendments to the eviction moratorium” and data on the emergency rental assistance program inclusive of the number of Los Angeles City residents on the program’s waitlist and individuals who may have qualified for rental assistance but not have received assistance from either the State or City programs.

City of Santa Monica

Since 2020, the Santa Monica City Council has ratified an Executive Order establishing a local emergency, related emergency measures inclusive of an eviction moratorium and over forty supplements to the Executive Order.

On January 27, 2022, following the Los Angeles County’s Board of Supervisors action extending the Countywide eviction moratorium and rent increase freeze applicable only to Rent Stabilized units in the County’s unincorporated areas, the Santa Monica Director of Emergency Services issued the Forty-Second Supplement to the City’s Executive Order. As a procedural matter, each supplement to the Executive Order must be ratified by the City Council. The Forty-Second Supplement to the Executive Order is scheduled for ratification at the upcoming City Council meeting on March 8th, Agenda Item 3F.

This Supplement reinstates and amends the City’s eviction moratorium which includes prohibitions on evictions for no-fault reasons, nuisance or unauthorized occupants or pets whose presence is necessitated by or related to the COVID-19 emergency, and denial of entry to the housing providers as set forth in the order. The Order also prohibits removals of units from the rental market pursuant to the Ellis Act until sixty days following the expiration of the Order. Additionally, it also sets forth the reporting requirements that housing providers must submit to the City Attorney’s Office. The Executive Order and related Eviction Moratorium will remain in place through June 30, 2022, unless extended.

City of Beverly Hills

The City’s eviction moratorium and rent increase freeze has been in effect since 2020 and is currently set to expire upon the expiration of the City’s local emergency, a date unknown. The eviction moratorium prohibits evictions based on non-payment of rent where the renter demonstrates substantial financial hardship due to COVID-19, and no-fault reasons unless for health and safety. Renters are provided with one year from the end of the local emergency to repay unpaid deferred rent. The City also has a broad ban on rent increases for rental units subject to the City ‘s Rent Stabilization Ordinance, regardless of whether or not the renter is financially impacted by COVID-19. This ban remains in effect through the end of the City’s local emergency.

During a Beverly Hills City Council Study Session on February 15th, the City Council directed staff to return with an ordinance that ends the eviction moratorium and rent increase freeze as of May 31, 2022. The one-year rent repayment period would also commerce at that time.

With regard to allowing owners to recover annual permissible rent increases that were foregone due to the rent increase freeze, the City Council directed staff to establish a process for owners to gradually recoup missed increases over the next few years. It is anticipated that staff will return with a draft ordinance at the upcoming March 15, 2022 City Council meeting.

We encourage members with properties in the City’s mentioned to review the full details of these local eviction moratoriums and seek appropriate legal guidance as needed.

This article is for informational purposes only. If you have any questions regarding your property or specific tenancies and the requirements of any local law changes described herein, please consult with an attorney.