On Friday, December 11, 2020, Illinois Governor Pritzker issued the latest in a series of Executive Orders addressing the COVID-19 pandemic.

 

New Executive Order

Executive Order 2020-74 extends the moratorium on Illinois evictions to January 9, 2021. The new Order only allows landlords to proceed on evictions for non-payment against:

  • non-“Covered Persons” or
  • for conduct that is a direct threat to the health and safety of other tenants or an immediate and severe risk to property.

 

Other Prohibited Evictions

All other types of evictions (including those for holdovers, unauthorized occupants, and conduct that does not rise to the level of a direct threat) appear to be prohibited again although they were allowed under the prior Order, Executive Order 2020-72.

 

New Requirements

Executive Order 2020-74 also establishes new requirements that differ from the prerequisites Illinois landlords have been complying with over the last month.

  • Instead of “providing” a copy of the Illinois Housing Development Authority (IHDA) Tenant Declaration, as was previously required, landlords must now personally serve the IHDA Tenant Declaration form, or a similar form, on the tenant as you would a 5 day notice.
  • IHDA released a new 2-page Declaration form that now contains a cover page.
  • As with the Governor’s prior Executive Order, if a resident signs the Tenant Declaration Form (attesting under penalty of perjury that they meet one or more of the criteria listed in the Declaration) then you cannot proceed against them unless their conduct falls under the direct threat exceptions.
  • You must now wait 5 days after service of the new Tenant Declaration form before serving the termination notice.

 

Landlord and Tenant Obligations

Executive Order 2020-74 requires that the foregoing conditions be met before an eviction lawsuit can be filed. If an Illinois landlord files a case now where they had complied with the prior requirements set forth in Executive Order 2020-72, the landlord is risking dismissal of their lawsuit.  Therefore, many landlords will unfortunately need to start over with serving the Tenant Declaration form and hope that they can complete the Governor’s requirements before a new Executive Order is issued on January 10 which could revise the Illinois evictions process yet again.

 

As always, the Governor’s new Order does not waive a tenant’s obligation to pay rent and rent will continue to accrue as the lease dictates. Some tenants have misinterpreted the Governor’s Order and believe their rent is waived which is creating large unpaid balances on their accounts.

 

Legal Resource

KSN can assist Illinois landlords by preparing the appropriate termination notices for your property in compliance with the Governor’s latest Executive Order, the Chicago Ordinance, and the CARES Act. Our attorneys will work to avoid possible dismissal of your eviction cases and further delays in removing non-covered tenants.

 

Our law firm will continue to monitor the ongoing changes with the eviction process and their impact on landlords and rental property managers. If you would like to speak to one of our attorneys for additional explanations of the Executive Order, the CARES Act, the CDC Order, or the most recent changes in Cook County and Chicago, KSN can be reached by calling 855-537-0500 or by visiting ksnlaw.com.

 

Since 1983, KSN has been a legal resource for landlords, property managers, and property owners. We have four office locations, serving hundreds of clients and thousands of communities throughout Illinois, Indiana, and Wisconsin. Our attorneys are also licensed in Arizona, Florida, and Missouri.

 

Please note the material contained in this article is for educational and informational purposes only and does not constitute legal advice. No attorney-client relationship is established by your review or receipt of the information contained in this article. You should not act on the information discussed in this article without first obtaining legal advice from an attorney duly licensed to practice law in your State. While KSN has made every effort to include up-to-date information in this article, the law can change quickly. Accordingly, please understand that information discussed in this article may not yet reflect the most recent legal developments. Material is not guaranteed to be correct, complete, or up to date. KSN reserves the right to revise or update the information and statements of law discussed in the article law at any time, without notice, and disclaims any liability for your use of information or statements of law discussed on the article, or the accessibility of the article generally. This article may be considered advertising in some jurisdictions under applicable law/s and/or ethical rules/regulations. © 2020 Kovitz Shifrin Nesbit, A Professional Corporation.