OLYMPIA, Wash. — Gov. Jay Inslee has extended his moratorium on evictions through June 4, 2020, as the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) crisis continues and hundreds of thousands of Washingtonians remain unemployed.
“It is clear that as we deal with the challenges around COVID-19, the financial impacts on Washingtonians are significant,” Inslee said. “People have lost their livelihoods through no fault of their own and we must continue to take steps to ensure they don’t also lose the roofs over their heads."
As in the original order issued in mid-March, the governor's new proclamation prevents landlords from evicting in all situations that fall within the Landlord-Tenant Act and prohibits law enforcement from assisting in evictions, but Thursday's proclamation extends beyond that as well.
The new proclamation prohibits residential evictions in other dwelling situations, including motorhome owners who lease a lot, transitional housing, and public lands and campgrounds. It also prohibits a landlord from requiring a non-paying tenant to move to a lesser unit and prevents landlords from threatening to take action against tenants.
The proclamation prohibits landlords from increasing rents or deposits for residential and commercial units. It also stops landlords from treating unpaid rent and charges as an enforceable debt.
While Inslee’s proclamation prevents evictions in all situations that fall within the Landlord-Tenant Act, it does not mean that renters do not have to pay their monthly rent.
All payments delayed through the proclamation will “still be owed but a landlord must offer a tenant a reasonable repayment plan to enforce any collection of that debt.”