Court extends Detroit evictions moratorium through Aug. 15

The 36th District Court said Thursday it is extending a moratorium on evictions in the city of Detroit following the expiration of Gov. Gretchen Whitmer’s four-month statewide evictions prohibition.

The prohibition expired Thursday, but the court’s moratorium now extends it through Aug. 15. The earliest evictions for cases that already have been signed by a judge will not begin until Aug. 16. There are 450 of these outstanding cases, 36th District Chief Judge William McConico said.

Whitmer’s previous executive orders required a 30-day delay in evictions following the the expiration of the statewide moratorium, but the latest order did not include that long of a delay, McConico said. He said the moratorium would provide an initial grace period as operations of eviction diversion programs being offered by the state of Michigan and the city of Detroit take effect.

“There are resources,” McConico said, “now available through both the city and the state in which the tenant can access money to pay back the rent. It’s a good option for the landlord to obtain the rent they have and that they are duly owed. It keeps people in their homes, and landlords are paid for their property.”

Local Housing Assessment and Resource agencies began accepting applications on Thursday from residents struggling to pay rent and their landlords through a program run by the Michigan State Housing Development Authority. Payments are expected to begin in early August, MSHDA spokeswoman Katie Bach said.

There is $50 million in coronavirus relief funds available for rental assistance. Landlords can receive lump-sum payments in exchange for allowing tenants to remain in their homes, forgiving late fees and forfeiting up to 10% of the amount due. Tenants earning up to 100% of their area’s median income are eligible for assistance. In Wayne County, that is $55,000 for an individual and $78,500 for a family of four.

The city also has $11.5 million available in coronavirus relief funding for rent assistance for tenants making up to 80% of the average median income and are already in the eviction process. Residents at risk can call 866-313-2520 or go to detroitevicitonhelp.com.

bnoble@detroitnews.com

Twitter: @Breana Noble

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