By Jim Perskie
The federal government on Monday sent letters to the nation’s largest apartment landlords warning them to honor federal rules preventing renters from being evicted for non-payment of rent during the pandemic.
The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau and Federal Trade Commission reminded landlords that the temporary moratorium on evictions is in place through the end of June.
“Landlords should ensure that FDCPA-covered debt collectors working on their behalf, which may include attorneys, notify tenants of their rights under federal law. Nearly nine million households are at risk of eviction due to the economic effects of COVID-19, but no one should lose their home without understanding their rights,” CFPB Acting Director Dave Uejio said. “We will hold accountable debt collectors who move forward with illegal evictions.”
The letters were sent to landlords that manage roughly 2 million apartments. Neither the CFPB nor the FTC has determined whether the letters’ recipients have violated the law, the agencies said in a news release.
“With millions of families nationwide at risk of eviction, it’s vital that landlords and the debt collectors who work on their behalf understand and abide by their obligations,” acting FTC Chairwoman Rebecca Kelly Slaughter said. “We are continuing to monitor this area and will act as needed to protect renters.”