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Oregon Eviction Moratorium FAQ

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Moratorium on residential evictions in Oregon on the basis of nonpayment of rent or terminations without tenant cause. Oregon's state-wide moratorium ended June 30, 2021, however, there are still protections in place for tenants related to the pandemic.
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Oregon's Eviction Moratorium ended on June 30, 2021

While all state and local eviction moratoriums have expired, there are still protections in place for tenants related to the pandemic.

Rent relief information for renters and landlords.

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60 or 90-Day Safe Harbor Tenant Cover Letter

Tenants can use this cover letter to notify their landlord of their rights under SB 278 and Multnomah County Ordinance 1296 when providing their landlords with documentation of their application for rent assistance.

Attention renters: Oregon Eviction Moratorium ends June 30, 2021

Last updated July 9, 2021

What protections have been passed related to COVID‑19 housing protections?

Since the COVID-19 pandemic began in March 2020, there have been numerous emergency measures taken by state and local governments to protect renters from eviction during the pandemic. All of these measures, except HB 4401, its extension SB 282, SB 278, and Multnomah County Ordinance 1296 have either expired or been rescinded. The below list outlines the emergency measures that were taken either locally or state-wide since April 1, 2020 to present.

House Bill 4401

Oregon lawmakers passed House Bill 4401 (“HB 4401”) on December 21, 2020. This Bill extended the emergency period under HB 4213 until December 31, 2020 and extend the eviction moratorium in certain circumstances to June 30, 2021. The Bill also created a Landlord Compensation Fund, and allocated money for tenant-based rental assistance.

Senate Bill 282

Oregon lawmakers then amended the payment deadline for all rents accrued during this time with Senate Bill 282 (“SB 282”) on May 11, 2021. This amendment extended the grace period for repayment of balances until February 28, 2022.

The extension went into effect on July 1, 2021 and extended the repayment timeline for all tenants, regardless of whether a written declaration of financially hardship was submitted or not. Regular rent payments resumed on July 1, 2021, however, tenants have more time to pay the accrued nonpayment balance.

SB 282 also provides new protections for tenants including screening protections for tenants who were unable to pay their rent or who were involving in any kind of eviction court action during the emergency period. SB 282 also protects tenants, in certain situations, from being evicted or assessed a fee when they have guests stay in the rental unit for longer than the rules outlined in their lease.

Senate Bill 278

Oregon lawmakers then passed additional protections against evictions for nonpayment of rent for tenants who have applied for emergency rent assistance with Senate Bill 278 (“SB 278”) on June 22, 2021. 

This law prevents a landlord from serving a termination for nonpayment of rent or engaging in an eviction court case for nonpayment of rent if the tenant provides documentation that they have applied for emergency rent assistance.  

This law requires a landlord to attach a notice of the right to avoid termination and eviction for nonpayment of rent if documentation of the application for rent assistance by the tenant is provided to the landlord. These protections are in place until February 28, 2022. 

This law also changed the pay-out from the Landlord Compensation Fund from 80% of the past-due rent of qualified tenants to 100%. Finally, this law created a new source of compensation for landlords who delayed enforcement actions for nonpayment of rent due to SB 278 and whose tenants have been unable to secure rent assistance. 

Multnomah County Ordinance 1296

Multnomah County Board of Commissioners passed Ordinance 1296 on July 8, 2021. This Ordinance extends the 60-day grace period under SB 278 to 90 days for tenants living in Multnomah County.

Past Protections

The following protections have expired or been rescinded but are available here for reference.

  • Multnomah County Ordinance 1287 was adopted on September 24, 2020 to protect Multnomah County tenants. This Ordinance provided some additional protections than Oregon’s House Bill 4213 and 4401. It was rescinded on February 1, 2021.

  • The City of Portland adopted Ordinance 190156 to expand Multnomah County’s eviction moratorium to all areas of the city, including those in the legal boundaries of Portland but outside of Multnomah County. This Ordinance expired on February 1, 2021.

  • Executive Order 20-56
    On September 28, 2020, Governor Brown signed Executive Order No. 20-56 which extended the state moratorium until December 31, 2020. This Executive Order did not create a new repayment grace period for rent that accrued between October 1 and December 31, 2020.

  • House Bill 4213
    Oregon lawmakers passed House Bill 4213 (“HB 4213”) on June 26, 2020. This Bill extended the eviction moratorium until September 30, 2020 and created a six-month repayment period for deferred rent and other charges. It also clarified the process for landlords to send a notice of outstanding balance, offer payment plans and the use of other types of terminations without tenant cause.

  • Executive Order 20-13
    The Governor's Executive Order 20-13 created a state-wide temporary moratorium on certain evictions and terminations of rental agreements and leases in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. This order was signed on April 1, 2020 and was in effect until June 30, 2020.

How long was the moratorium in place?

The City of Portland and Multnomah County moratorium, providing additional protections, ended on February 1, 2021.

The state-wide moratorium for termination notices for no cause expired on June 30, 2021.

The state-wide moratorium for terminations based on nonpayment of rent ended on December 31, 2020 unless a tenant submitted a written declaration of financial hardship to their landlord. If a tenant submitted a written declaration of financial hardship, the state-wide moratorium for nonpayment of rent was extended for that tenant until June 30, 2021.

All tenants, regardless of whether they submitted a written declaration of financial hardship to their landlord, need to pay any nonpayment balance that accrued between April 1, 2020 and June 30, 2021 by February 28, 2022.

Between July 1, 2021 and February 28, 2022, tenants who have applied for rent assistance have a safe harbor from termination or eviction due to nonpayment of rent. In order to be protected, tenants must provide written documentation of their application for rent assistance to their landlord.

  • For rentals in Multnomah County: Landlords are prohibited from taking any action to terminate or evict a tenant for nonpayment of rent for 90 days following receipt of the written documentation.
  • For rentals outside of Multnomah County: Landlords are prohibited from taking any action to terminate or evict a tenant for nonpayment of rent for 60 days following receipt of the written documentation.

Once a tenant’s application for rent assistance has been submitted and is complete, the relevant organization will automatically provide the tenant with a letter documenting that an application has been made. Tenants can use this cover letter to notify their landlord of their rights under SB 278 and Multnomah County Ordinance 1296 when providing their landlords with documentation of their application for rent assistance.


What do I need to do if I am a tenant and cannot pay my rent?

Tenants are obligated to pay their monthly rent under the terms of their rental agreement beginning July 1, 2021. However, between July 1, 2021 and February 28, 2022, a tenant can avoid termination and eviction for nonpayment of monthly rent if they have applied for rent assistance and have provided documentation of their application for rent assistance to their landlord. This documentation must be provided to a landlord in a reasonable manner such as personal delivery, first-class mail or sending a copy or photograph of the documentation via text message or email. Documentation can be provided by the tenant up through the First Appearance court date in an eviction case.

A landlord is prohibited from taking any further enforcement action regarding nonpayment of rent for 90 days (if the tenancy is in Multnomah County) or 60 days (if the tenancy is outside Multnomah County) from the date the tenant provided the documentation to them.

If a tenant has already applied for rent assistance, they will automatically be sent a letter of verification that they can provide to their landlord. Tenants can use this cover letter to notify their landlord of their rights under SB 278 when providing their landlords with documentation of their application for rent assistance.

All rent and other charges that a tenant was unable to pay between April 1, 2020 through June 30, 2021 qualify to be deferred. Tenants do not need to provide any documentation of financial hardship to their landlord to defer rent or other charges that accrued during this period.


Won’t deferred rent hurt a tenant’s credit score and rental history?

SB 282 prohibits a landlord from reporting a tenant’s nonpayment balance from April 1, 2020 through July 1, 2021 as delinquent to any consumer credit reporting agency.

SB 282 also prohibits landlords from considering an applicant’s unpaid rent, including rent reflected in court judgements, or referrals of debt to a collection agency, that accrued on or after April 1, 2020 and before March 1, 2022.


Can an eviction during the pandemic affect a tenant’s ability to find housing?

SB 282 prohibits landlords from considering any court eviction actions that occurred between April 2, 2020 and March 1, 2022 when screening an applicant, regardless of the outcome of the case and regardless of the reason for the eviction.

The law also allows tenants to apply to have any court eviction actions that arose between April 1, 2020 and March 1, 2022 removed from their record. To be eligible for removing an eviction record, a tenant must have paid off any money award that was part of the eviction judgment. In order to have an eviction record removed, tenants must file a motion with the court.


When does a tenant need to pay the past due rent or other charges?

Nothing in the moratorium relieves the tenants of liability for unpaid rent. Tenants have until February 28, 2022 to repay any rent or other charges accrued between April 1, 2020 and June 30, 2021.

Tenants will need to begin paying monthly rent under the terms of their rental agreement on July 1, 2021.


Can late fees be charged on the past due rent?

No late fee may be charged or collected for rent that was deferred between April 1, 2020 and June 30, 2021, unless that rent remains unpaid after February 28, 2022.

Late fees may be charged to a tenant for rent that comes due on or after July 1, 2021 even if the tenant provides documentation of their application for rental assistance to their landlord and is entitled to a 60 or 90-day safe harbor period from termination or evictions for nonpayment of rent.


What type of notice can a landlord send to a tenant regarding their outstanding balance?

Prior to February 28, 2022, a landlord may provide a written notice to a tenant stating that the tenant continues to owe any rent due. The notice must also include a statement that eviction for nonpayment of rent, charges or fees accrued between April 1, 2020 and June 30, 2021 is not allowed before February 28, 2022.

In addition to the written notice regarding the tenant’s outstanding balance, a landlord may offer a tenant a voluntary payment plan for any outstanding balance. The notice must state that the payment plan is voluntary. A tenant is not required to enter into a repayment plan.


How are utilities affected by the moratorium?

If the tenant pays any other fees, service or utility charges directly to the landlord (not directly to a third-party provider), those fees and charges accrued between April 1, 2020 and June 30, 2021 qualify for deferral under the moratorium. The process for deferral and timelines for payment are the same as rent.

If a tenant pays fees, service or utility charges directly to a third-party provider and cannot make these payments due to a substantial loss of income related to COVID-19, we encourage the tenant to reach out directly to those service providers to discuss options.


What other types of termination notices, besides notices for nonpayment of rent, were prohibited under the moratorium?

The moratorium applied to terminations related to non-payment of rent and some terminations without cause under ORS 90.427. All landlords were prohibited from terminating a tenancy for no-cause under ORS 90.427(3) and (4) until June 30, 2021.

Landlords were prohibited from terminating a tenancy for one or more of the four qualified landlord outlined in ORS 90.427(5) until different dates depending on whether the tenancy was in Multnomah County or not.  

For tenants in the City of Portland or Multnomah County:

  • April 1 - June 30, 2020: No termination for any qualified landlord reason were permitted.

  • June 30, 2020 – February 1, 2021: Only termination notices for one qualified landlord reason were permitted. A landlord could terminate a tenancy if they had accepted an offer to purchase the dwelling from a person who intended to occupy the unit as their primary residence. A termination notice for any other qualified landlord reason was prohibited.

  • February 1, 2021 – present: All lawful termination notices for a qualified landlord reason are permitted.

For tenants outside of the City of Portland or Multnomah County:

  • April 1 - June 30, 2020: No termination for any qualified landlord reason were permitted.

  • June 30 – September 30, 2020: Only termination notices for one qualified landlord reason were permitted. A landlord could terminate a tenancy if they had accepted an offer to purchase the dwelling from a person who intended to occupy the unit as their primary residence. A termination notice for any other qualified landlord reason was prohibited.

  • September 30 - December 20, 2020: Only termination notices for two qualified landlord reason were permitted. A landlord could terminate a tenancy if they had accepted an offer to purchase the dwelling from a person who intended to occupy the unit as their primary residence. A landlord could also terminate a tenancy if the landlord or a member of the landlord’s immediate family intended to occupy the dwelling as their primary residence.

  • December 20, 2020 – present: All lawful termination notices for a qualified landlord reason are permitted.

Tenants who receive/received a termination for a qualified landlord reason in the City of Portland may be entitled to mandatory Relocation Assistance under both Portland City Code and state law. For more information on mandatory Relocation Assistance in the City of Portland please refer to Mandatory Renter Relocation Assistance. Tenants who receive/received a termination notice for a qualified landlord reason outside of the City of Portland may be entitled to relocation assistance under state law.

The moratorium dis not apply to evictions for any other lawful purpose.


What types of termination notices are permitted after July 1, 2021?

Starting July 1, 2021, landlords can issue all termination notices allowed under state landlord tenant law with limited exceptions as described below.

Under SB 278 and Multnomah County Ordinance 1296, if a tenant has provided written documentation of their application for rental assistance, a landlord cannot serve a termination notice for nonpayment of rent for 90 days (if within Multnomah County) or 60 days (if outside Multnomah County) from the date they were provided the written documentation. If a tenant has not provided written documentation of their application for rental assistance, a landlord can issue a 10-day Termination Notice for Nonpayment of Rent once the rent is eight days past due.

A tenant can provide written documentation of their application for rental assistance up through the first court date in an eviction action (often called “First Appearance”). Once a landlord receives the written documentation, they must suspend all lease enforcement actions related to nonpayment of rent for 90 or 60 days. If the outstanding rent outlined in the Termination Notice is not paid within 90 or 60 of receiving the written documentation, a landlord may resume lease enforcement action.

Under HB 4401, a landlord may also serve a 30-day Termination Notice Without Tenant Cause up until August 31, 2021, if the first year of occupancy ended between April 1, 2020 and August 31, 2021.

After August 31, 2021, a landlord may only issue a Termination Notice Without Tenant Cause beyond the first year of occupancy in the following situations: 

  • The Termination Notice is for one of the four qualified landlord reason outlined in ORS 90.427(5); or 

  • The dwelling unit is on the same property or in the same building as the landlord's primary residence and the property or building contain no more than two units. 

Under SB 282, a landlord may not terminate a tenancy for having unauthorized guests between July 1, 2021 and February 28, 2022, in some circumstances. During this time period, a landlord may screen a guest that resides in a dwelling unit for more than 15 days in a twelve month period, as they would a new tenant, except that they may not screen for income or credit. The landlord may also require the guest to enter into a temporary occupancy agreement. The landlord may not require the temporary occupancy agreement to end any sooner than February 28, 2021.


What if a landlord doesn’t comply with the eviction moratorium or other protections related to the pandemic?

If a landlord violates the residential eviction moratorium in HB 4213 or HB 4401, a tenant may obtain injunctive relief to recover possession or address any other violation, have a defense to an eviction action, and may recover from the landlord an amount up to three months’ periodic rent plus any actual damages.

If a landlord violates the protections against terminations and evictions for nonpayment of rent after a tenant provides proof of their application for rent assistance in SB 278 or fails to provide notice of a tenant’s rights under SB 278, a tenant may have a defense in an eviction action and may obtain an emergency court order to resume their tenancy.

If a landlord violated Multnomah County Ordinance 1287 (September 24, 2020 through February 1, 2021), a tenant may obtain injunctive relief to recover possession or address any other violation and may recover from the landlord an amount up to three months’ periodic rent plus any actual damages.

If any person, business or entity is in violation of Executive Order 20-13 (April 1 through June 30, 2020) or 20-56 (September 28 through December 31, 2020) they may be subject to the penalties described in ORS 401.990 in addition to any other private rights of action or other enforcement mechanism that may exist in statute or at common law, or under federal law.


Is there financial relief for renters?

In addition to federal rent assistance distributed to the State and local jurisdictions, HB 4401 allocated money for tenant-based rent assistance to be applied for by a tenant and paid directly to the tenant’s landlord. This rent assistance will be distributed through community action agencies and culturally specific providers. Tenant should contact 211info for more information on how to access this financial assistance. Tenants can also apply for statewide rent assistance through the online portal located at oregonrentalassistance.org


As a landlord, don’t I waive my rights to terminate if I accept partial rent payments?

Many landlords worry about the legal implications of accepting partial rent payments under normal circumstances. The waiver provisions outlined at ORS 90.412 do not apply to a landlord that accepts a partial rent payment per HBs 4213 and 4401.


Is there relief available to landlords who do not receive rental payment from their tenants?

For tax years beginning on or after January 1, 2020, Multnomah County has increased the tax rate for the Business Income Tax from 1.45% to 2.00%; increased the gross receipts exemption from less than $50,000 to less than $100,000; and increased the maximum owner’s compensation deduction from $108,000 to $127,000.

HB 4401 created a Landlord Compensation Fund to help landlords with the financial impact of deferred rent. The Fund will be administered by Oregon Housing and Community Services and will allow landlords to apply for compensation for all rent deferred by their tenants from April 1, 2020 to the time of application. With the passage of SB 278, compensation from the fund will be 100% of the total past-due rent of qualified tenants. Landlords that received 80% of the total past-due rent prior to the passage of SB 278 will receive the outstanding 20% directly from the state without the need for any further action.

SB 278 also directed Oregon Housing and Community Services to provide a grant to a third party to make distributions to compensate landlords who delayed termination notices or evictions upon documentation of a tenant’s application for rent assistance and either the tenant’s application for rental assistance was denied or sixty days have passed since the tenant provided documentation without the landlord receiving rental assistance.

Additionally, landlords who rent out a single family home with a mortgage backed by Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac (the Enterprises) may be protected by a foreclosure moratorium until at least August 31, 2020. The foreclosure moratorium applies to Enterprise-backed, single-family mortgages only.

In addition to financial assistance, there may be mortgage relief for federal and private mortgage holders. For more information on mortgage relief, see Federal and Private Mortgage Relief.