Texas Lawyer discussing Coronavirus, Landlords, and Tenants
April 2, 2020
There are a number of governmental entities and court systems that are prohibiting landlords from filing new eviction lawsuits in response to the coronavirus crisis. However, there is no order that we have seen issued by any governmental organization or court system that relieves tenants of the obligation of paying rent.
As a result, tenants that fail to pay rent at any time are in breach of their lease agreement or month-to-month rent obligation.
Unless there is a new order issued by the Texas Supreme Court or new legislation enacted by the Texas legislature, those tenants that breach their obligation to pay rent will be subject to eviction once the prohibition on eviction is lifted.
Recommendations to Tenants during this Coronavirus time.
We recommend that tenants continue to pay their rent or contact their landlord regarding a deferment arrangement. Landlords need to maintain the property, pay the utilities, taxes, mortgage payments, pest control, etc. These things may not be possible for some landlords if the tenants do not pay the rent. Further, eventually courts will again be open for business on evictions. Tenants may find themselves with precious little time to find new accommodations at that time.
Recommendations to Landlords during this Coronavirus time.
We recommend that landlords work with tenants as much as possible. If landlords are unable to reach agreement with the tenants and want to evict tenants that are not paying rent, go ahead and submit notices to vacate to those tenants that are not paying rent. That way the notice provisions of the law are met once the restriction prohibiting eviction has been lifted and those landlords can then immediately file their eviction lawsuits.
If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to contact us.