Massachusetts’s pause on evictions expired on October 17, 2020. When the state moratorium expired, a federal moratorium established by the Centers for Disease Prevention and Control (CDC) became effective in Massachusetts. Through July 31, 2021, the CDC moratorium prevents residential evictions for non-payment for qualified tenants who submit a written declaration to their landlord. Courts will accept filings and process cases and may enter judgments but will not issue an order of execution (the court order that allows a landlord to evict a tenant) until after the expiration of the CDC order. Protection is limited to households who meet certain income and vulnerability criteria.
In addition, the Trial Court has changed its procedures to provide for a two-tier process that will enable tenants and landlords to access resources and mediate their disputes in order to preserve tenancies.
A state law enacted in December of 2020 added new requirements for notices to quit issued by landlords and made additional changes to court processes. Chapter 257 of the Acts of 2020, An Act providing for eviction protections during the COVID-19 pandemic emergency, as amended by sections 12 to 17 of chapter 20 of the Acts of 2021 requires landlords to provide a form containing certain information related to residential tenant’s rights and available resources when giving a written notice to quit to a residential tenant for nonpayment of rent. The Act also requires EOHED (mass.gov/noticetoquit) to (1) develop the accompanying form that a landlord will provide when given a residential tenant a written notice to quit for nonpayment of rent; and (2) receive from landlords electronic copies of any such notices to quit. This change remains in effect until January 1, 2023.
The Chief Justices of the Housing Court, District Court, and Boston Municipal Court departments each issued a standing order outlining procedures applicable in their respective court departments for summary process (eviction) cases following the expiration of the Massachusetts eviction moratorium.
To wit: “Accordingly, it is hereby ORDERED, pursuant to my authority as set forth in G.L. c. 211B, § 9, that to the extent any provisions of Trial Court Rule I: Uniform Summary Process Rules are inconsistent with the individual standing orders issued by the Chief Justices of the Housing Court, District Court, and Boston Municipal Court departments, those provisions of Trial Court Rule I: Uniform Summary process Rules are suspended until further order.
This Administrative Order is effective as of June 15, 2021 and will remain in effect until further order. This Administrative Order is temporary and may be modified or rescinded at any time, as necessary.”
We continue to monitor change and will update according. For any questions, please contact Deborah Gallo, Esq. at email@example.com.