Since early 2020, the COVID-19 pandemic has caused substantial hardship across the globe, including significant and widespread economic distress. The hardship has impacted the nations’ landlords small and large. For example, according to a January 2021 report published by Moody’s Analytics, 18% of renters nationwide—more than 10 million people—are behind on rental payments. That is more than triple of an average year.
The federal government, along with some state and local governments, have furthered that distress by instituting rent and/or eviction moratoria that disregard landlords’ economic realities. These actions threaten the ability of landowners to meet their own mortgage, maintenance, employee, and other obligations, potentially resulting in debt, forced loss of property, and a cascading effect throughout the economy. Significantly, and the focus of this article, many or most of these continuing moratoria also violate the subjected landlords’ contractual, statutory, and constitutional rights.
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