State of California
The State of California has passed an eviction moratorium, protecting renters statewide through February 1, 2021. Renters who owe rent due to a COVID related hardship between March 4th, 2020 and January 20th, 2021 cannot be evicted due to that owed rent. Renters must provide a declaration of hardship with information about the hardship and demonstrate the inability to pay. More details about this protection can be found on the state’s COVID-19 Housing resources page. The California Department of Real Estate also has a webpage of resources and information for tenants and landlords.
Alameda County Board of Supervisors passed an emergency ordinance suspending evictions countywide for renters, homeowners, and those living in mobile home parks who are experiencing loss of income, significant out-of-pocket medical expenses or childcare needs as a result of the County COVID-19 shelter mandate. This moratorium is in place beginning March 24, 2020 and continuing until 60 days after the expiration of the local health emergency or 60 days after December 31st, 2020 (whichever is later). You can read an FAQ about the county level moratorium here that is updated to include information about the statewide moratorium. Alameda County Board of Supervisors has also funded an anti-displacement program called AC Housing Secure to connect renters, homeowners and those in need of financial assistance help to stay in their homes.
Contra Costa County
The Contra Costa County Board of Supervisors also established eviction protections for residents of the county. The current set of protections are in place from November 17th, 2020 through January 31st, 2021. The County has established additional protections for renters on top of the State’s protection and has protections for commercial tenants. The County has released an FAQ about the state and county level protections with links to resources for tenants and landlords.
Homeowners or small landlords are encouraged to contact their loan providers to request forbearance. Your lender must give you detailed information about their reasons for denying a forbearance request and you have the right to appeal a denial. You can learn more about protections and resources for homeowners from the California Department of Real Estate.
Fastrak has also suspended cash tolls and will be charging tolls either through Fastrak or will mail a bill for the toll until further notice.
The Federal CARES Act
Employment Benefits: The federal COVID-19 relief package passed in March expands unemployment insurance benefits by 13 weeks and includes a four-month enhancement of benefits. Those eligible will receive an additional $600 per week from the federal government, in addition to any CA unemployment insurance benefits they receive through July 25th, 2020. Notably, the bill makes these benefits available to independent contractors and the self-employed in a new program called the Pandemic Unemployment Assistance program. PUA benefits are currently set to expire on December 26th. If you are experiencing difficulty with getting your Unemployment benefits, please fill out this form and a member of my staff will be in touch to connect you to assistance.
Federal Student Loan Program: Federal student loan payments have been suspended through January 31, 2021, under the Congressional stimulus bill called the CARES Act, passed on March 27. Students have the option of stopping payment on their loans during this time, without incurring penalties or fees. This only covers federal student loans owned by a government agency -- this does not include private student loans. For more information, please visit: https://studentaid.gov/announcements-events/coronavirus
Questions about Insurance
For businesses or consumers with insurance-related questions, the CA Department of Insurance’s consumer hotline at 1-800-927-4357 continues to be available from 8:00 AM to 4:00 PM to help California consumers and businesses with their urgent insurance issues and answer questions you may have. You can also find FAQs and COVID-19 specific information from the Department of Insurance on its website.