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Inslee Extends Eviction Moratorium and Other Relevant Updates.

On March 18, 2021, Governor Jay Inslee signed Proclamation 20-19.6 for Evictions and Related Housing Practices in Washington State. This came as the Washington statewide eviction moratorium was set to expire on March 31, 2021. Here are some highlights of that proclamation:

  • The eviction moratorium will now expire June 30, 2021 at 11:59 pm;

  • The moratorium covers residential dwellings and commercial rental properties;

  • Landlords cannot post the requisite legal notice to start the eviction process unless: (1) eviction action is required to respond to a significant, immediate risk to health, safety of others caused by the resident; or (2) the owner provides 60 days' advance notice that the owner intends to occupy the home as a primary residence;

  • No late fees can be assessed;

  • Landlord can't charge rent if the tenant couldn't occupy the home for any period because of COVID;

  • Landlords cannot collect unpaid rent unless they first offer a reasonable "repayment plan that was reasonable based on the individual financial, health or other circumstances of that resident..."

  • No rent increases;

  • Licensed long-term care facilities are exempt.

Regarding the "reasonable repayment plan" requirement for collecting unpaid rent:

"I recognize that courts, tenants, landlords...may desire additional direction conquering specific parameters for reasonable repayment plans related to outstanding rent. This is best addressed by legislation, and I invite the state Legislature to produce legislation as early as possible during their next session."

Inslee has punted on what to do with the tsunami of unpaid rent receivables held by landlords. The answer should come soon from our state lawmakers.

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