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Coronavirus (COVID-19): Should I enter into a rent repayment plan with my landlord?

Authored By: Northwest Justice Project LSC Funded
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If you couldn't pay rent that was due in March, April, May, or June 2020, learn why and how to ask your landlord for a repayment plan. #6341EN

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Why would I need a repayment plan?

Under the governor’s moratorium, renters have a right to ask for a repayment plan to pay rent that was due in March, April, May, or June of 2020 that you did not pay.

You cannot be evicted for unpaid rent during this time unless your landlord agrees to a reasonable repayment plan. The plan has to be based on your situation. It cannot not just be something the landlord offers everyone in your building.

 

How do I decide if a repayment plan is reasonable?

The governor’s order says that a landlord cannot evict you unless you refuse or fail to pay on a repayment plan that is based on your own financial, health, or other circumstances.

For example, if you have no income and no money, it may be reasonable to tell a landlord you can’t pay on the back rent you owe until you have a job again.

 

What if the landlord doesn’t offer me a reasonable repayment plan?

If your landlord doesn’t offer or agree to a reasonable plan, they cannot try to collect the rent. They cannot report it on your credit, sue you to collect it, or evict you for not paying it.

 

What if I agree to a repayment plan and fail to pay?

The landlord can evict you. This is why it is important that you only agree to a repayment plan if you are sure you can pay it. Do not feel pressured to agree to something you cannot pay. If you are pressured, make a complaint to the Attorney General’s Office. (Contact info below.) 

 

Do I have to pay rent after June 4, 2020?

The moratorium ends on June 4, 2020. You may have to pay rent that comes due in July on time, or you could be evicted.

 

My landlord is trying to evict me anyway or collect the rent.

Get legal help right away. Call

Housing Justice Project at (253) 234-4204 in King County www.kcba.org/For-the-Public/Free-Legal-Assistance/Housing-Justice-Project

 

CLEAR Hotline: 1-888-201-1014 in all other counties, weekdays between 9:15 am and 12:15 pm

 

Your local volunteer lawyer program: check the list at https://bit.ly/39yv9m7 to find one in your county
Contact the state Attorney General’s office at fortress.wa.gov/atg/formhandler/ago/COVID19EvictionComplaintForm.aspx. Let them know your landlord is trying to evict you.

 

  • You are still responsible to pay your rent. Washington’s “eviction moratorium” just pauses the court process. If you can pay the rent, or part of it, do not skip this responsibility!
Last Review and Update: May 06, 2020
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