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Housing and Homelessness

City Of LA’s COVID Eviction Rules Tentatively Set To End After January

Paper reads: "Eviction Notice, Notice to Quit" with a blue surgical mask resting nearby
An eviction notice rests on a table beside a face mask.
(BackyardProduction / Getty Images
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During the pandemic, the city of Los Angeles has given tenants hurt by COVID-19 extra protections against eviction. Now, the city is getting closer to phasing out those rules.

On Wednesday, an L.A. city council committee focused on COVID-19 voted to recommend ending eviction protections after Jan. 31, 2023 for those unable to pay rent due to the economic effects of the pandemic.

That decision still needs full city council approval before it takes effect. But this is the first time the city’s elected leaders have agreed on a firm end date to L.A.’s pandemic-era eviction rules.

During a previous housing committee meeting, council members clashed on the best path forward and failed to reach an agreement on when to wind down the protections.

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Landlords have long called for an immediate return to pre-pandemic eviction regulations. Many called in to Wednesday’s committee meeting to say they’re financially reeling from missed rent payments. Some said they still have not received government-funded rent relief.

In an August report, the city’s housing department recommended ending the COVID-19 eviction safeguards on Dec. 31 — the same day L.A. County plans to get rid of its rules. But council members decided to push the deadline back a month.

“We all know that December is a month with holidays and extra expenses,” said
Councilmember Mitch O'Farrell. “Impacted renters should be given a little extra time to get back on their feet.”

According to the state’s housing department, more than 101,000 households in the city of L.A. received rent relief funding during the pandemic. Without eviction protections in place, many of those tenants could have quickly lost their housing after falling behind on rent.

Homelessness policy experts have credited L.A.’s anti-eviction rules with stabilizing the number of unhoused residents in the city during the pandemic, following years of double-digit increases. Still the latest homeless count released earlier this month showed a slight 1.7% uptick from early 2020. About 41,980 Angelenos are estimated to be unhoused on any given night.

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