The District of Columbia, Maryland and Virginia (DMV) have all extended their shelter in place orders and issued moratoriums on foreclosures and evictions.
DC Mayor Muriel Bowser (D) issued an Executive Order declaring a public health emergency and issued a stay-at-home order that goes into effect on April 1 at 12:01 am. Any individual who willfully violates the stay-at-home order may be guilty of a misdemeanor and, upon conviction, subject to a fine not exceeding $5,000, imprisonment for not more than 90 days, or both.
On March 13, 2020, the Superior Court of the District of Columbia advised that it, “will suspend evictions of all tenants and foreclosed homeowners” through May 1, 2020.
On March 15, 2020, the Superior Court of the District of Columbia ordered that all, “non-priority matters” are postponed until May 1, 2020. Affected proceedings include all “Landlord and Tenant,” “Mortgage Foreclosure” and “Housing Court” matters. The order makes no distinction between residential and commercial foreclosures.
Maryland Governor Larry Hogan (R) said, “We are no longer asking or suggesting that Marylanders stay home. We are directing them to do so.” Gov. Hogan also issued an emergency order that prohibits Maryland courts from ordering the eviction of any tenant who can show that their failure to pay rent is the result of the coronavirus; signed an order prohibiting utility companies from shutting off service for non-payment, or charging late fees during this emergency; issued an administrative order that puts a hold on the foreclosure of residential properties and the rights of redemption of tax sales of residential properties pending in the circuit courts during the COVID-19 public health emergency.
Finally, the Supreme Court of Virginia granted Governor Ralph Northam’s (D) request for a judicial emergency in response to COVID-19. From Monday, March 16 through Monday, April 6, non-essential, non-emergency court proceedings in all district and circuit courts are suspended absent a specific exemption. Specifically, this response includes a prohibition on new eviction cases for tenants who are unable to pay rent as a result of COVID-19. All non-exempted court deadlines are tolled and extended for a period of 21 days. Additionally, the State Corporation Commission (SCC) issued an order directing the utilities that it regulates, such as electric, natural gas and water companies in Virginia, to suspend service disconnections for 60 days to provide immediate relief for any customer, residential and business, who may be financially impacted by the COVID-19 outbreak.