Massachusetts Lawmakers OK Ban on Evictions, Foreclosures

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Massachusetts lawmakers have sent to Republican Gov. Charlie Baker a bill they say would provide a safety net for renters, homeowners, and small businesses grappling with the economic fallout of the coronavirus state or emergency.

The legislation approved Friday prohibits all non-essential evictions and foreclosures and provides mortgage borrowers with forbearance options and protects tenants from late fees.

The bill would create a moratorium on all stages of the eviction and foreclosure process for 120 days from the enactment of the legislation or 45 days after the state of emergency has been lifted, whichever comes first.

It would also prohibit all non-essential evictions for residential properties and small businesses and bar residential landlords from terminating tenancy and sending a notice to quit.

Landlords would be banned from issuing late fees and reports to credit agencies for nonpayment of rent, provided that a tenant offers notice and documentation to the landlord within 30 days of the missed rent that the non-payment was related to a financial impact from COVID-19.

The bill would still allow evictions for actions involving allegations of criminal activity.

Copyright AP - Associated Press
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