Search
  • storable-logo-color

  • marcus badge logo ss...

  • XercorInsuranD18aR06...

  • Yardi-Breeze-Logo-St...

  • Janus-500x177

  • af1-wings-8


Wednesday, March 03, 2021
You are here : About SSA  >  SSA News

10

Can I Conduct Lien Sales and Charge Late Fees During the Coronavirus Pandemic?

posted on

 

State and Local Restrictions on Lien Sales and Late Fees

 

When the coronavirus began to spread throughout the United States, several states and localities enacted restrictions on foreclosures and evictions. Although most covered residential foreclosures and evictions that are not applicable to self storage, some states expanded those restrictions to cover commercial or non-residential evictions and foreclosures as well. Self storage lien sales are not evictions in the usual sense of that word; however, SSA urges all operators to exercise great caution if they operate in an area covered by a moratorium on commercial or non-residential evictions or foreclosures.

 

As of this writing in mid-October, most states and localities have lifted their restrictions on commercial and non-residential evictions. The states and localities with continued restrictions are listed below. Self storage operators are urged to consult with knowledgeable counsel before proceeding with lien sales or imposing late fees in the states and localities with continued restrictions.

 

SSA offers the following considerations for operators that proceed with the lien sale process:

  1. Look for options other than a lien sale, particularly if the tenant provides a documented COVID-related reason for non-payment. For example, consider allowing the tenant to remove the stored property by a certain date and waiving part or all of the outstanding payment if the tenant does so.
  2. If a tenant has filed for bankruptcy or indicates that he intends to do so, the operator must immediately halt all collection efforts and should consult with your legal counsel. The operator may be prohibited even from agreeing to allow the tenant to remove the property.
  3. Hold the lien sale with an online auction provider. This will eliminate the need to ensure social distancing, mask wearing, gathering limits, and other state and local health requirements during the lien sale.
  4. If you hold the lien sale in-person, be sure that you or your auctioneer follow all state and local health requirements such as social distancing, mask wearing, and gathering limits.

 

In addition to the considerations above, operators must ensure that they follow their state’s lien law as written. Operators must follow the lien law even if the stored property appears to have little or no value. Lien law manuals, including sample timelines, checklists, and lien notices, can be purchased here.

 

Finally, operators should keep in mind that lien sales are a non-judicial remedy (outside of the court system) used solely for non-payment of rent and other fees. If an operator wants to terminate a tenancy for reasons other than non-payment, such as living in the unit or other illegal activity, and the tenant will not leave voluntarily, the operator may need to file an eviction action in court. Eviction actions filed in court may be prevented or slowed due to restrictions put in place by courts and local and state governments. Operators should consult with knowledgeable counsel to discuss their options for handling these troublesome tenants. The Self Storage Legal Network is a members-only resource available to provide this information.

 

Please email Daniel Bryant and Joe Doherty if you believe any orders are missing or if you have any questions about this document.

 

Federal

 

  • The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) issued an order limiting certain residential evictions. This order does not apply to self storage lien sales or commercial evictions.

 

Alabama:

 

  • Lien sales are allowed. For in-person lien sales, operators must comply with all applicable state and local health requirements such as social distancing, mask wearing, and gathering limits.

 

Alaska:

 

  • Lien sales are allowed. For in-person lien sales, operators must comply with all applicable state and local health requirements such as social distancing, mask wearing, and gathering limits.

 

Arizona:

 

  • Lien sales are allowed. For in-person lien sales, operators must comply with all applicable state and local health requirements such as social distancing, mask wearing, and gathering limits.

 

Arkansas:

 

  • Lien sales are allowed. For in-person lien sales, operators must comply with all applicable state and local health requirements such as social distancing, mask wearing, and gathering limits.

 

California:

 

  • The Governor issued an executive order and a subsequent extension that authorizes local governments to pause evictions for commercial tenants. The protection is in effect through March 31, 2021.
  • Pursuant to the Governor’s order, tenants are still obligated to pay rent, and landlords can still recover rent that is due. The order only applies to the imposition of limitations on evictions when the basis for the eviction is nonpayment of rent, or a foreclosure, arising out of a substantial decrease in household or business income (including, but not limited to, a substantial decrease in household income caused by layoffs or a reduction in the number of compensable hours of work, or a substantial decrease in business income caused by a reduction in opening hours or consumer  demand), or substantial out-of-pocket medical expenses; and the decrease in household or business income or the out-of-pocket medical expenses was caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, or by any local, state, or federal government response to COVID-19, and is documented.
  • In other words, the statewide order limits local governments to protecting tenants that provide a COVID-19 related reason for non-payment. If the tenant does not provide such a reason, a California operator can likely proceed with the lien process against that tenant. However, operators should carefully review the local orders linked to below to determine the exact protections available to tenants in the jurisdictions where the operator does business.
  • Commercial evictions and foreclosures are suspended only as set forth by local governments. A complete list of California orders can be found here.

Below are the orders that specifically refer to self storage.

 

Livermore, CA

 

  • The Director of Emergency Services issued an order stating that “no landlord or lessor shall endeavor to evict a commercial tenant for nonpayment of rent, limit their physical access to personal property or conduct lien sales, including but not limited to any such provisions under . . . Business and Professions Code section 21700 et seq., if the tenant or lessee demonstrates that the inability to pay rent is due to, or arising out of, a substantial decrease in business income or substantial out of pocket medical expense, or extraordinary child care needs, any of which was caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, or by any local, state, or federal government response to COVID-19, and is documented in writing.”
  • A landlord who knows that a tenant cannot pay some or all of the rent temporarily for the reasons set forth above shall not serve a notice pursuant to . . . Business and Professions Code section 21703 as applicable, . . . conduct a lien sale, or otherwise seek to evict or terminate a rental agreement for nonpayment of rent during the period of the local emergency and while this Order is in place.
  • A landlord is presumed to know of a tenant’s inability to pay rent within the meaning of this Order if the tenant or mobile homeowner, within 30 days after the date that rent is due, notifies the landlord in writing of tenant’s inability to pay full rent because of a substantial decrease in business income, or out of pocket medical expenses caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, or extraordinary child care needs, or by any local, state, or federal government response to COVID-19, and provides documentation to support the claim. Any medical or financial information provided to the landlord shall be held in confidence and only used for evaluating the tenant’s claim.
  • A landlord is also prohibited from retaliating against a tenant that qualifies for the protections set forth in this order during the term of the moratorium. For example, a landlord, and any of the landlord’s employees or agents, is prohibited from terminating utilities or blocking physical access to personal property to a qualified tenant protected by this moratorium.
  • The order remains in effect until March 31, 2021.

 

El Monte, CA

 

  • The City Council imposed a temporary moratorium on eviction for non-payment of rent by storage unit patrons impacted by the COVID-19 crisis.
  • The ordinance states that “no storage unit operator shall endeavor to evict a storage unit patron, in accordance with this Urgency Ordinance, if the patron demonstrates that the inability to pay rent or fees is due to COVID-19, the state of emergency regarding COVID-19, or following government recommended COVID-19 precautions.
  • A patron must satisfy all the following requirements to take advantage of the ordinance’s protections: 1.Prior to the date of the Order, the patron paid rent due to the storage unit operator pursuant to an agreement; 2. The patron retains verifiable documentation, such as termination notices, payroll checks, pay stubs, bank statements, medical bills, or signed letters or statements from an employer or supervisor explaining the patron's changed financial circumstances, to support the patron's assertion of an inability to pay. This documentation may be provided to the storage unit operator no later than the time of payment of back-due rent; and 3. The patron notifies the storage unit operator in writing before the rent is due, or within a reasonable period of time afterwards not to exceed 7 days, that the patron needs to delay all or some payment of rent because of an inability to pay the full amount due to reasons related to COVID-19, including but not limited to the following:

a) The patron was unavailable to work because the patron was sick with a suspected or confirmed case of COVID-19 or caring for a household or family member who was sick with a suspected or confirmed case of COVI D- 19;

b) The patron experienced a lay-off, loss of hours, or other income reduction resulting from COVID-19, the state of emergency, or related government response; or

c) The patron needed to miss work to care for a child whose school was closed in response to COVID-19.

  • If a storage unit patron complies with the requirements of subsection A, a storage unit operator shall not do any of the following: 1. Prevent a storage unit patron from accessing their stored items during the normal hours of operation of the storage unit facility; 2. Send to the storage unit patron a Notice of Lien Sale pursuant to Business and Professions Code, Division 8, Chapter 10, or any other applicable statute regulating storage unit operators; or 3. Conduct a Lien Sale pursuant to Business and Professions Code, Division 8, Chapter 10, or any other applicable statute regulating storage unit operators.
  • Any fees deferred by storage unit patrons under the protections of the ordinance will become due on July 2, 2021. Nothing in this Urgency Ordinance shall relieve a patron of liability for unpaid rent or storage fees, which the operator may seek and the patron must pay by July 2, 2021. After July 2, 2021, the rent or storage fees are unpaid, an operator may charge or collect a late fee for rent/fees that is delayed for the reasons stated in this Urgency Ordinance; or an operator may seek rent or storage fees that is delayed for the reasons stated in this Urgency Ordinance through the eviction or other appropriate legal process.
  • All operators shall be required to send to all patrons, either via U.S. mail or any other manner reasonably calculated to provide actual notice, a copy of the City-prepared Notice attached hereto as Exhibit “A.” Operators must dispatch said notice within five calendar days of approval of this Urgency Ordinance. Operators must also post a copy of said notice on site in an entry area or other prominent public area.
  • The ordinance remains in effect until July 2, 2021.

 

City of Los Angeles, CA

 

  • The Los Angeles City Council passed an ordinance requiring self storage owners to defer rent if a tenant is unable to pay for a COVID-related reason and provides documentation to the owner no later than seven days after the rent is due.
  • The deferral lasts until three months after the local emergency period.
  • The ordinance prohibits late fees on deferred rent.
  • The ordinance also requires that owners provide notice of the ordinance to their tenants.
  • Owners in Los Angeles are strongly encouraged to consult with legal counsel before proceeding with lockouts or lien sales. 

 

Los Angeles County, CA

 

  • The Board of Supervisors ratified an Executive Order stating that no residential or commercial property owner shall evict a residential or commercial tenant for: (1) nonpayment of rent, late charges, or any other fees accrued if the Tenant demonstrates an inability to pay rent and/or related charges due to financial impacts related to COVID-19, the state of emergency regarding COVID-19, or following government-recommended COVID-19 precautions, and the Tenant has provided notice to the Landlord within seven (7) days after the date that rent was due, unless extenuating circumstances exist, that the Tenant is unable to pay; or (2) reasons amounting to a no-fault eviction under the County Code, unless necessary for health and safety reasons.
  • The order defines “no-fault  eviction” as  any eviction for which the notice to terminate  tenancy  is not based on alleged fault  by  the  Tenant,  including but not  limited  to,  eviction  notices  served pursuant to Code of Civil Procedure section 1161 et seq. or County Code.
  • The Board later amended the Executive Order to cover the unincorporated areas of L.A. County and the incorporated cities without a local eviction moratorium.
  • The amended order prohibits a landlord from charging late fees on unpaid rent.
  • The amended order also states that “a commercial tenant includes, but is not limited to, a tenant using a property as a storage facility for commercial purposes.”
  • The order provides tenants with 12 months after the expiration of the order to repay their unpaid rent.
  • The L.A. County order, as amended, may affect lien sales and late fees, particularly as applied to business tenants. Consultation with your legal counsel is strongly advised before proceeding with any lien activity.

 

Ontario, CA

 

  • The City Council ordered that no landlord shall endeavor to evict a storage unit patron (including a lien sale), in accordance with the ordinance, if the storage unit patron demonstrates that the inability to pay rent or fees is due to COVID-19, the state of emergency regarding COVID-19, or following government recommended COVID-19 precautions. To take advantage of these protections, the patron must satisfy all of the following requirements:

 

  1. Prior to April 7, the patron paid rent due to the storage unit operator pursuant to an agreement.

 

  1. The patron notifies the storage unit operator in writing before the rent is due, or within a reasonable period of time afterwards not to exceed 7 days, that the patron needs to delay all or some payment of rent because of an inability to pay the full amount due to reasons related to COVID-19, including but not limited to the following:

 

  • The patron was unavailable to work because the patron was sick with a suspected or confirmed case of COVID-19 or caring for a household or family member who was sick with a suspected or confirmed case of COVID-19;

 

  • The patron experienced a lay-off, loss of hours, or other income reduction resulting from COVID-19, the state of emergency, or related government response; or

 

  • The patron needed to miss work to care for a child whose school was closed in response to COVID-19.

 

  1. The patron retains verifiable documentation, such as termination notices, payroll checks, pay stubs, bank statements, medical bills, or signed letters or statements from an employer or supervisor explaining the patron’s changed financial circumstances, to support the patron’s assertion of an inability to pay. This documentation may be provided to the storage unit operator no later than the time of payment of back-due rent.

 

  • If a storage unit patron complies with the requirements above, a storage unit operator shall not do any of the following:

 

  1. Prevent a storage unit patron from accessing their stored items during the normal hours of operation of the storage unit facility; or

 

  1. Send to the storage unit patron a Notice of Lien Sale pursuant to Business and Professions Code, Division 8, Chapter 10, or any other applicable statute regulating storage unit operators.

 

  1. Conduct a Lien Sale pursuant to Business and Professions Code, Division 8, Chapter 10, or any other applicable statute regulating storage unit operators.

 

  • For purposes of this ordinance, “in writing” includes email or text communications to a landlord or the landlord’s representative with whom the tenant has previously corresponded by email or text. Any medical or financial information provided to the landlord shall be held in confidence, and only used for evaluating the tenant's claim.

 

  • The patron is not relieved of liability for unpaid storage fees, which the operator may seek after expiration of the local emergency and the patron must pay within six months of the expiration of the local emergency. Six months after the end of the emergency if the rent or storage fees are unpaid, an operator may charge or collect a late fee for rent/fees that is delayed for the reasons stated in the ordinance; or an operator may seek rent or storage fees that is delayed for the reasons stated in the ordinance through the eviction or other appropriate legal process.
  • The order expires on October 1, 2020 and will not be renewed. However, tenants have until April 1, 2021 to pay their unpaid rent in full.

Pasadena, CA

  • City Council passed an ordinance stating that “no landlord shall endeavor to evict a commercial tenant for non-payment of rent if a commercial tenant is unable to pay rent due to financial impacts related to COVID-19.”
  • “Tenant” means a person, partnership, corporation, family trust or other business entity entitled by a written or oral agreement to occupy a rental unit to the exclusion of others, and actually occupy said rental unit for residential or commercial purposes (including, but not limited to, a self-storage facility, as defined by Pasadena Municipal Code Section 17.80.020).
  • The Pasadena Municipal Code defines self-storage as “a structure containing separate yorstorage space that is designed to be leased or rented individually in an enclosed building. This use does not include outdoor storage or recreational vehicles, boats, personal watercraft, motorcycles, or trailers.”
  • A landlord shall give written notice of the protections afforded by this ordinance to each tenant no later than 30 days after its effective date. In lieu of providing written notice to each tenant's rental unit, a landlord may conspicuously post and prominently display such notice in the common areas of the property during the pendency of this local emergency.
  • A landlord knows of a tenant’s inability to pay rent if the tenant, within 30 days after the date that rent is due, notifies the landlord in writing of lost income and inability to pay full rent due to financial impacts related to COVID-19, and provides documentation to support the claim. Any medical or financial information provided to the landlord shall be held in confidence, and only used for evaluating the tenant's claim.
  • The tenant must pay any unpaid rent within six months after the local state of emergency ends.
  • The landlord cannot charge late fees, deny a tenant access to the premises, or move or convert the tenant’s possessions.

Colorado

 

  • Lien sales are allowed. For in-person lien sales, operators must comply with all applicable state and local health requirements such as social distancing, mask wearing, and gathering limits.
  • The Governor issued an order prohibiting late fees through January 31, 2021. He extended the order through March 2, 2021. Any late fees charged on or after March 2, 2021 “shall apply only to rent due on or after that date.”

 

Connecticut:

 

  • Lien sales are allowed. For in-person lien sales, operators must comply with all applicable state and local health requirements such as social distancing, mask wearing, and gathering limits.

 

Delaware:

 

  • Lien sales are allowed. For in-person lien sales, operators must comply with all applicable state and local health requirements such as social distancing, mask wearing, and gathering limits.

 

District of Columbia:

 

  • The DC Council has placed restrictions – see subsection (l) toward the bottom of the link – on most forms of consumer debt collection. The DC Attorney General’s office has taken the position that these restrictions apply to self storage lien sales. They may also extend to typical lien notices. While the restrictions are in effect, operators should likely halt tenant collection efforts, aside from payment reminders that do not imply or threaten a lien sale. Consultation with your legal counsel is strongly advised.
  • The Coronavirus Support Congressional Review Emergency Amendment Act of 2020 has provisions that address payment plans and rent increases for certain commercial properties. These provisions may affect self storage and should be reviewed closely. This article provides a brief explanation of the Act’s key provisions.

 

Florida:

 

  • Lien sales are allowed. For in-person lien sales, operators must comply with all applicable state and local health requirements such as social distancing, mask wearing, and gathering limits.

 

Georgia:

 

  • Lien sales are allowed. For in-person lien sales, operators must comply with all applicable state and local health requirements such as social distancing, mask wearing, and gathering limits.

 

Hawaii:

 

  • Lien sales are allowed. For in-person lien sales, operators must comply with all applicable state and local health requirements such as social distancing, mask wearing, and gathering limits.

 

Idaho:

 

  • Lien sales are allowed. For in-person lien sales, operators must comply with all applicable state and local health requirements such as social distancing, mask wearing, and gathering limits.

 

Illinois:

 

  • Lien sales are allowed. For in-person lien sales, operators must comply with all applicable state and local health requirements such as social distancing, mask wearing, and gathering limits.

 

Indiana:

 

  • Lien sales are allowed. For in-person lien sales, operators must comply with all applicable state and local health requirements such as social distancing, mask wearing, and gathering limits.

 

Iowa:

 

  • Lien sales are allowed. For in-person lien sales, operators must comply with all applicable state and local health requirements such as social distancing, mask wearing, and gathering limits.

 

Kansas:

 

  • Lien sales are allowed. For in-person lien sales, operators must comply with all applicable state and local health requirements such as social distancing, mask wearing, and gathering limits.

 

Kentucky:

 

  • Lien sales are allowed. For in-person lien sales, operators must comply with all applicable state and local health requirements such as social distancing, mask wearing, and gathering limits.

 

Louisiana:

 

  • Lien sales are allowed. For in-person lien sales, operators must comply with all applicable state and local health requirements such as social distancing, mask wearing, and gathering limits.

 

Maine:

 

  • Lien sales are allowed. For in-person lien sales, operators must comply with all applicable state and local health requirements such as social distancing, mask wearing, and gathering limits.

 

Maryland:

 

  • Governor issued an order, halting certain types of commercial evictions and certain types of repossessions.
  • It states that to the extent any statute, rule or regulation of the State of Maryland or any political subdivision would permit a Creditor to repossess any Chattel Home by self-help (including, without limitation, CL §§ 9-609, 12-115, 12-624, 12-1021, or 14-2008), such statute, rule, or regulation is hereby suspended until the state of emergency is terminated and the catastrophic health emergency is rescinded.
  • “Chattel Home” means personal property used as a person’s residence, including without limitation, mobile homes, trailers, and live-aboard boats.
  • While subject to interpretation, this could cover self storage lien sales of chattel homes. SSA members should consult with legal counsel before proceeding with a lien sale of a chattel home.
  • Aside from the sale of chattel homes, lien sales are allowed. For in-person lien sales, operators must comply with all applicable state and local health requirements such as social distancing, mask wearing, and gathering limits.

 

Massachusetts:

 

  • The Massachusetts Attorney General placed restrictions on most forms of debt collection, which likely extends to lien notices and lien sales. While the regulations are in effect, operators should likely halt tenant collection efforts, aside from payment reminders that do not imply or threaten a lien sale. The regulations appear to have expired on June 25. Operators in Massachusetts are strongly encouraged to consult with their legal counsel before proceeding with lien sales.
  • The Governor signed a bill restricting certain non-essential evictions of residential tenants and tenants of small business premises units. Consultation with your legal counsel is strongly advised. The bill remained in effect until October 17 but was not extended.
  • The bill defines “small business premises unit” as a premises occupied by a tenant for commercial purposes whether for-profit or not-for-profit; provided, however, that a small business premises unit shall not include a premises occupied by a tenant if the tenant or a party that controls, is controlled by or is in common control with the tenant: (i) operates multi-state; (ii) operates multi-nationally; or (iii) is publicly traded; or (iv) has less than 150 full-time equivalent employees.” This appears to apply only to certain commercial tenants of self storage.
  • A non-essential eviction is defined as an eviction: (i) for non-payment of rent; (ii) resulting from a foreclosure; (iii) for no fault or no cause; or (iv) for cause that does not involve or include allegations of: (a) criminal activity that may impact the health or safety of other residents, health care workers, emergency personnel, persons lawfully on the subject property or the general public; or (b) lease violations that may impact the health or safety of other residents, health care workers, emergency personnel, persons lawfully on the subject property or the general public.
  • The definition of non-essential eviction excludes an eviction for a small business premises unit on account of the expiration of the term of a lease or tenancy or a default by the tenant of a small business premises unit the terms of its lease or tenancy that occurred before March 10, 2020.
  • The bill provides that “a deadline or time period for action by a party to a non-essential eviction for a residential dwelling unit or small business premises unit, whether such deadline or time period was established before or after the effective date of this act, including, but not limited to, a date to answer a complaint, appeal a judgment or levy upon an execution for possession or a money judgment, shall be tolled.” This language is broad and likely tolls the deadline for payment that the Massachusetts lien law requires an operator to include a notice of a pending sale of property.
  • The bill also prohibits late fees if, not later than 30 days after the missed rent payment, the tenant of a small business premises unit provides notice and documentation to the landlord that the non-payment of rent was due to a financial impact from COVID-19.

 

Beverly, MA

 

  • The Board of Health issued an order stating that “no landlord and/or owner shall enforce an eviction upon a resident of Beverly including residential tenants and commercial tenants deemed to be essential businesses per the directive of the Governor of Massachusetts, during this public health crisis.”
  • The order remains in effect until further notice.
  • This order likely affects self storage lien sales of certain commercial tenants. Operators in Beverly should consult with legal counsel before proceeding with any lien sales.

 

Cambridge, MA

 

  • The City Manager issued an order stating that “no Landlord shall enforce an action for any reason upon a tenant in Cambridge, either residential or commercial, during the pendency of this Emergency Order.”
  • The order remains in effect until further notice.
  • This order likely affects self storage lien sales. Operators in Cambridge should consult with legal counsel before proceeding with any lien sales.

 

Danvers, MA

 

  • The Board of Health issued an order stating that “no landlord and/or owner shall enforce an eviction upon a resident of Danvers, residential or commercial, during this public health crisis.”
  • The order remains in effect until further notice.
  • This order likely affects self storage lien sales. Operators in Danvers, and operators with delinquent tenants who live in Danvers, should consult with legal counsel before proceeding with any lien sales.

Gloucester, MA

  • The Board of Health issued an order stating that “no landlord and/or owner shall enforce an eviction upon a resident of Gloucester, including residential tenants and commercial tenants deemed to be essential businesses per the directive of the Governor of Massachusetts, during this public health crisis.”
  • The order remains in effect until further notice.
  • This order likely affects self storage lien sales of certain commercial tenants. Operators in Gloucester should consult with legal counsel before proceeding with any lien sales.

Lynn, MA

  • The Mayor issued an order stating that “no landlord and/or owner shall enforce an eviction upon a resident of Lynn, including residential tenants and commercial tenants during this public health crisis.”
  • The order remains in effect until further notice.
  • This order likely affects self storage lien sales. Operators in Lynn, and operators with delinquent tenants who live in Lynn, should consult with legal counsel before proceeding with any lien sales.

Newburyport, MA

  • The Board of Health issued an order stating that “No landlord and/or owner shall enforce an eviction upon a resident of Newburyport, residential or commercial, during this public health crisis.”
  • This order remains in effect until further notice.
  • This order likely affects self storage lien sales. Operators in Newburyport, and operators with delinquent tenants who live in Newburyport, should consult with legal counsel before proceeding with any lien sales.

Peabody, MA

  • The Board of Health issued an order stating that “no landlord and/or owner shall enforce an eviction upon a resident of Peabody, including residential tenants and commercial tenants deemed to be essential businesses per the directive of the Governor of Massachusetts, during this public health crisis.”
  • This order remains in effect until further notice.
  • This order likely affects self storage lien sales of certain commercial tenants. Operators in Peabody should consult with legal counsel before proceeding with any lien sales.

Salem, MA

  • The Board of Health issued an order stating that “no landlord and/or owner shall enforce an eviction upon a resident of Salem, residential or commercial, during this public health crisis.”
  • This order remains in effect until further notice.
  • This order likely affects self storage lien sales. Operators in Salem, and operators with delinquent tenants who live in Salem, should consult with legal counsel before proceeding with any lien sales.

Somerville, MA

 

  • The Mayor ordered that “no landlord and/or owner shall enforce an eviction upon a resident of Somerville, residential or commercial, during this public health crisis.”
  • This Emergency Order shall remain in effect until notice is given, pursuant to the Board of Health’s judgment that the public health emergency no longer exists.
  • This order likely affects self storage lien sales. Operators in Somerville, and operators with delinquent tenants who live in Somerville, should consult with legal counsel before proceeding with any lien sales.

Michigan:

 

  • Lien sales are allowed. For in-person lien sales, operators must comply with all applicable state and local health requirements such as social distancing, mask wearing, and gathering limits.

 

Minnesota:

 

  • Lien sales are allowed. For in-person lien sales, operators must comply with all applicable state and local health requirements such as social distancing, mask wearing, and gathering limits.

 

Mississippi:

 

  • Lien sales are allowed. For in-person lien sales, operators must comply with all applicable state and local health requirements such as social distancing, mask wearing, and gathering limits.

 

Missouri:

 

  • Lien sales are allowed. For in-person lien sales, operators must comply with all applicable state and local health requirements such as social distancing, mask wearing, and gathering limits.

 

Montana:

 

  • Lien sales are allowed. For in-person lien sales, operators must comply with all applicable state and local health requirements such as social distancing, mask wearing, and gathering limits.

 

Nebraska:

 

  • Lien sales are allowed. For in-person lien sales, operators must comply with all applicable state and local health requirements such as social distancing, mask wearing, and gathering limits.

 

Nevada:

 

  • Lien sales are allowed. For in-person lien sales, operators must comply with all applicable state and local health requirements such as social distancing, mask wearing, and gathering limits.

 

New Hampshire:

 

  • Lien sales are allowed. For in-person lien sales, operators must comply with all applicable state and local health requirements such as social distancing, mask wearing, and gathering limits.

 

New Jersey:

 

  • Lien sales are allowed. For in-person lien sales, operators must comply with all applicable state and local health requirements such as social distancing, mask wearing, and gathering limits.

 

New Mexico:

 

  • Lien sales are allowed, except as in Santa Fe. For in-person lien sales, operators must comply with all applicable state and local health requirements such as social distancing, mask wearing, and gathering limits.

 

Santa Fe, NM:

 

  • Santa Fe Mayor issued an order stopping residential and commercial evictions indefinitely. The Mayor is prohibiting the eviction of residential and commercial property tenants who, because of the public health emergency, are unable to pay rent on time. This likely affects self storage operators. Operators in Santa Fe should consult with legal counsel before proceeding with lien sales.

 

New York:

 

  • Governor issued an order, implementing a 90-day suspension of all commercial and residential evictions.
  • The Governor extended the initial suspension of evictions as follows: “There shall be no initiation of a proceeding or enforcement of either an eviction of any residential or commercial tenant, for nonpayment of rent . . . owned or rented by someone that is eligible for unemployment insurance or benefits under state or federal law or otherwise facing financial hardship due to the COVID-19 pandemic for a period of sixty days beginning on June 20, 2020.” The Governor further extended the moratorium until January 31, 2021.
  • Self storage operators in New York should consult with their legal counsel before sending notices or proceeding with any lien sales.

 

North Carolina:

 

  • The Governor issued an order restricting commercial evictions. The order was in effect from May 30 to June 20.
  • Self storage operators are strongly encouraged to consult with legal counsel before conducting lien sales or charging late fees to tenants based on a missed payment from May 30 to June 20. Otherwise, lien sales are allowed. For in-person lien sales, operators must comply with all applicable state and local health requirements such as social distancing, mask wearing, and gathering limits.

 

North Dakota:

 

  • Lien sales are allowed. For in-person lien sales, operators must comply with all applicable state and local health requirements such as social distancing, mask wearing, and gathering limits.

 

Ohio:

 

  • Lien sales are allowed. For in-person lien sales, operators must comply with all applicable state and local health requirements such as social distancing, mask wearing, and gathering limits.

 

Oklahoma:

 

  • Lien sales are allowed. For in-person lien sales, operators must comply with all applicable state and local health requirements such as social distancing, mask wearing, and gathering limits.

 

Oregon:

 

  • Oregon Governor Kate Brown issued an order prohibiting non-residential evictions for nonpayment caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.  The order is worded broadly and appears to apply to self storage lien sales. The order also prohibits late fees or other penalties arising from nonpayment. The order expired on June 30 and was replaced by the legislation discussed below.
  • Governor Brown signed a bill to extend the state’s commercial tenant eviction moratorium until September 30, 2020. Although this bill does not expressly mention self storage, it contains broad language that may prohibit self storage lien sales, lockouts, and late fees. Oregon operators should consult with legal counsel before proceeding with lien sales in the state.
  • Unlike the Governor’s previous order, this bill does not require the tenant to provide a COVID-related reason for non-payment. In fact, the tenant does not need to provide any reason for or notice when missing a payment. The tenant has until March 31, 2021 to repay any payments missed between April 1, 2020 and September 30, 2020.
  • Importantly, landlords may follow the usual timeline against tenants who miss rent in October 2020 or later or who missed rent prior to April 1, 2020. Again, however, operators should consult with legal counsel before doing so.

Gresham, OR

 

  • The City Council ordered a temporary moratorium on residential and commercial evictions; however, the ordinance is not yet available online.

 

Hillsboro, OR

 

  • The City Council ordered that “a temporary moratorium on residential and commercial evictions within the City of Hillsboro is necessary for the protection of life or property and to prevent or minimize danger to lives and property.”
  • The order remains in effect until further notice.
  • Self storage operators in Hillsboro should consult with their legal counsel before conducting lien sales.

 

Tualatin, OR

 

  • The Mayor ordered a temporary moratorium on all commercial evictions in the City of Tualatin for tenants on the basis of nonpayment of rent, late charges, utility charges, or any other service charge or fee, due to the loss of business income resulting from COVID-19.
  • To establish eligibility for this moratorium, affected tenants must:(a) demonstrate  substantial wage loss or loss of business income, through documentation or other objectively verifiable means, resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic, including County,  state, and federal restrictions imposed to mitigate its spread; and (b) notify their landlords on or before the day that rent is due that they are unable to pay rent, fees or charges due to substantial wage loss or loss of business  income as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.
  • Nothing in this moratorium shall relieve \ commercial tenants of liability for unpaid rent, charges or fees, which landlords may seek, and tenants must pay within six months after expiration of this emergency.
  • No late fee may be charged or collected for rent charges or fees that are delayed for the reasons stated in this moratorium; nor may a landlord seek rent, charges or fees that are delayed for the reasons stated in this moratorium through the eviction process.
  • The order remains in effect until further notice.
  • Self storage operators in Tualatin should consult with their legal counsel before conducting lien sales.

 

Pennsylvania:

 

  • Lien sales are allowed. For in-person lien sales, operators must comply with all applicable state and local health requirements such as social distancing, mask wearing, and gathering limits.

 

Rhode Island:

 

  • Lien sales are allowed. For in-person lien sales, operators must comply with all applicable state and local health requirements such as social distancing, mask wearing, and gathering limits.

 

South Carolina:

 

  • Lien sales are allowed. For in-person lien sales, operators must comply with all applicable state and local health requirements such as social distancing, mask wearing, and gathering limits.

 

South Dakota:

 

  • Lien sales are allowed. For in-person lien sales, operators must comply with all applicable state and local health requirements such as social distancing, mask wearing, and gathering limits.

 

Tennessee:

 

  • Lien sales are allowed. For in-person lien sales, operators must comply with all applicable state and local health requirements such as social distancing, mask wearing, and gathering limits.

 

Texas:

 

  • Lien sales are allowed, except as listed below. For in-person lien sales, operators must comply with all applicable state and local health requirements such as social distancing, mask wearing, and gathering limits.

 

Austin, TX

 

  • The city prohibited “the removal of property or exclusion of a tenant by a property owner in the manners described in the applicable sections of the Texas Property Code.” The self storage lien law is part of the Texas Property Code.
  • The order remains in effect until April 1, 2021.
  • This order likely affects self storage lien sales and may affect lockouts. Operators in Austin should consult with counsel before proceeding with any lien sales or lockouts.
  • Also, see below for the Travis County order, which applies in Austin.

 

El Paso County, TX

 

  • El Paso County ordered that “to the extent allowed by law, no landlord shall evict a tenant for lack of payment while this Order is in effect. Furthermore, in alignment with the direction from the Texas Justice Court Training Center, it is hereby declared that evictions are not essential and shall be suspended for the next 30 days or until this Order is lifted.”
  • Despite the broad wording, the order arguably applies only to residential evictions and not to commercial evictions or self storage lien sales. The language in the order is under the heading “Utilities & Residence” and the county issued guidance explaining the order’s effect on residential evictions.
  • Nevertheless, operators in El Paso County should consult with legal counsel before proceeding with any lien sales.

 

Laredo, TX

 

  • The Mayor ordered that “to the extent allowed by the law, no landlord shall evict a tenant for lack of payment while this ordinance is in effect.”
  • This order likely affects self storage lien sales. Operators in Laredo should consult with legal counsel before proceeding with any lien sales.

 

Travis County, TX

 

  • The county prohibited “the removal of property or exclusion of a tenant by a property owner in the manners described in the applicable sections of the Texas Property Code.” The self storage lien law is part of the Texas Property Code.
  • This order likely affects self storage lien sales and may affect lockouts. Operators in Austin should consult with counsel before proceeding with any lien sales or lockouts.
  • The order remains in effect until April 1, 2021.
  • This order applies in the incorporated parts of the Travis County and the following incorporated cities and villages in Travis County: Austin, Bee Cave, Briarcliff, Cedar Park, Creedmoor, Elgin, Jonestown, Lago Vista, Lakeway, Leander, Manor, Mustang Ridge, Pflugerville, Point Venture, Rollingwood, Round Rock, San Leanna, Sunset Valley, The Hills, Volente, Webberville, and West Lake Hills.

 

Utah:

 

  • Lien sales are allowed. For in-person lien sales, operators must comply with all applicable state and local health requirements such as social distancing, mask wearing, and gathering limits.

 

Vermont:

 

  • Lien sales are allowed. For in-person lien sales, operators must comply with all applicable state and local health requirements such as social distancing, mask wearing, and gathering limits.

 

Virginia:

 

  • Lien sales are allowed. For in-person lien sales, operators must comply with all applicable state and local health requirements such as social distancing, mask wearing, and gathering limits.

 

Washington:

 

  • Governor issued an order prohibiting landlords, property owners, and property managers from increasing, or threatening to increase, the rate of rent for any commercial rental property if the commercial tenant has been materially impacted by the COVID-19, whether personally impacted and is unable to work or whether the business itself was deemed non-essential pursuant to Proclamation 20-25 or otherwise lost staff or customers due to the COVID-19 outbreak. This prohibition does not apply to commercial rental property if rent increases were included in an existing lease agreement that was executed prior to February 29, 2020 (pre-COVID-19 state of emergency).
  • Except for rent increases included in an existing lease agreement that was executed prior to February 29, 2020, a commercial landlord may notify a tenant of a rent increase only if (i) the noticed rent increase does not take effect until after the expiration of this order, and any modification or extension thereof, and (ii) the notice is restricted to its limited purpose and does not contain any threatening or coercive language, including any language threatening eviction or describing unpaid rent or other charges.
  • The order is in place until March 31, 2021.

 

King County, WA

 

  • King County imposed a moratorium on evictions of small commercial tenants.
  • Small commercial tenant means a business entity, including a sole proprietorship, corporation, partnership or other legal entity, that: 1.  Is owned and operated independently from all other businesses.  A franchisee with five or fewer franchise units shall be considered owned and operated independently from its franchisor; 2.  Has fifty or fewer employees per establishment or premises; 3.  Has either been forced to close due to an emergency order issued by the Governor or has gross receipts from the previous calendar month of 2020 that are less than seventy percent of its gross receipts for the same month in 2019; and 4.  Is neither a general sales and service business with ten or more establishments in operation located anywhere in the world nor an entertainment use business with five or more establishments in operation located anywhere in the world.
  • A small commercial tenant who fails to pay rent when due between March 1, 2020, and March 1, 2021, may elect to pay the overdue rent through a repayment plan if the failure to pay was due to circumstances occurring as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. 
  • Late fees, interest or other charges arising from the late payment of rent do not apply to late payment of rent by small commercial tenants between March 1, 2020, to March 1, 2021, if the failure to pay was due to circumstances occurring as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, and do not apply to repayment of those amounts made in accordance with a repayment plan, so long as the payments are timely made under the plan.
  • This order likely affects self storage lien sales. Operators in King County should consult with legal counsel before proceeding with any lien sales.

 

Seattle, WA:

 

  • Mayor imposed a moratorium on small business and nonprofit tenant evictions for non-payment of rent or due to the expiration of the lease’s term until the earlier of the termination of the civil emergency declared in the Proclamation of Civil Emergency dated March 3, 2020 or May 16, 2020. The moratorium has been extended until March 31, 2021.
  • Small business means any business entity, including a sole proprietorship, corporation, partnership, or other legal entity, that is owned and operated independently from all other businesses, and that has fifty or fewer employees per establishment or premises.
  • During this moratorium, an owner of property shall not enforce a contract or statutory remedy under a lease that would remove a small business or nonprofit tenant from its premises. These prohibited remedies include, but are not limited to, terminating the tenant’s lease or terminating the tenant’s right to possession of the premises.
  • During this moratorium, an owner of property also shall endeavor to enter into a payment plan, or other workout agreement to assist a distressed small business or nonprofit in rent relief, including but not limited to the deferred payment of rent, discount to rent, or other strategies to address the economic disruption caused by the COVID-19 civil emergency.
  • No small business or nonprofit tenant shall incur late fees, interest, or other charges due to late payment of rent during the moratorium.
  • This order likely affects self storage lien sales. Operators in Seattle should consult with legal counsel before proceeding with any lien sales.

 

Seattle, WA

 

  • City Council passed an ordinance banning rent increases and late fees for small business and nonprofit tenants. The rent increase ban is in place until the city’s civil emergency ban is terminated. The late fee ban for non-payment is in place until March 2, 2021.
  • A small business or nonprofit tenant that fails to pay rent when due during or within six months after the termination of the city’s civil emergency may elect to pay its overdue rent in installments during that period on a payment schedule.
  • A written installment payment schedule shall be negotiated between the lessor and the small business or nonprofit for the payment of rent in arrears, provided that 1) the repayment schedule may not require the small business or nonprofit to pay, in addition to rent due for the month or period, more than 1/3 of late rent within any month or period following the month or period for which full rent was not paid unless agreed by the tenant, and 2) rent in arrears shall be paid in full to the lessor no later than one year after the termination of the city’s civil emergency.
  • “Small business” means any business entity, including a sole proprietorship, corporation, partnership, or other legal entity, that (1) is owned and operated independently from all other businesses (a franchisee with five or fewer franchise units shall be considered owned and operated independently from its franchisor); (2) has fifty or fewer employees per establishment or premises; (3) has either: been forced to close due to an emergency order issued by the Governor or Mayor; or has gross receipts from the previous calendar month of 2020 that are less than 70 percent of its gross receipts for the same month in 2019; and (4) is neither: a general sales and service business with ten or more establishments in operation located anywhere in the world; nor an entertainment use business with five or more establishments in operation located anywhere in the world.

 

West Virginia:

 

  • Lien sales are allowed. For in-person lien sales, operators must comply with all applicable state and local health requirements such as social distancing, mask wearing, and gathering limits.

 

Wisconsin:

 

  • Lien sales are allowed. For in-person lien sales, operators must comply with all applicable state and local health requirements such as social distancing, mask wearing, and gathering limits.

 

Wyoming:

 

  • Lien sales are allowed. For in-person lien sales, operators must comply with all applicable state and local health requirements such as social distancing, mask wearing, and gathering limits.

 

 

 

 

 

 

| Categories: | Tags: | View Count: (342) | Return

Post a Comment

  • 2016_SQ_Logo_OnLight...

  • Resize New G5Full Co...

  • resizeAMNC Logo

  • winter

  • SSA Banner Ad - Skys...

  • USC-WebAd-SSA-260pxb...

  • Sentinel-260x110

  • Baja-SSA-Ad-FIN