New York's Cooperative and Condominium Community




Evictions Suspended Statewide in Effort to Slow Coronavirus

New York City

Eviction ban, co-op boards, coronavirus, homeless shelters.
March 17, 2020

One of a co-op board’s most potent powers – the power to evict shareholders who break the rules or don’t pay their monthly maintenance – was already dealt a blow by last year’s passage of the sweeping Tenant Protection Act. Now the coronavirus has eliminated that power altogether – for the foreseeable future.

New York officials have suspended eviction proceedings indefinitely throughout the state to slow the spread of the deadly outbreak, according to a Sunday memo from the state’s chief administrative judge, Curbed reports.

Beginning Monday evening, eviction proceedings and pending orders have been suspended statewide until further notice, Chief Administrative Judge Lawrence Marks wrote in the memo to court employees. The suspension applies to both residential and commercial evictions, Lucian Chalfen, a spokesperson for the New York Office of Court Administration, confirmed.

The court system had issued a one-week moratorium in New York City on Friday, followed hours later by a coalition of 29 landlords pledging not to execute eviction warrants for 90 days.

The Sunday move to halt housing removals came after tenant advocates and elected officials decried the state’s lack of a moratorium, arguing that evictions during this public health crisis would drive up homelessness and worsen the spread of COVID-19.

Gov. Andrew Cuomo told reporters at a Sunday morning press conference that he had asked Court of Appeals Chief Judge Janet DiFiore to create a plan to limit traffic through the court system while maintaining crucial functions.

Housing court will remain open, but effective March 16 at 5 p.m. state officials “will be postponing all non-essential functions of the courts until further notice,” wrote Marks. Vital housing court functions such as landlord lockouts, repair orders, and serious code violations will continue.

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