BATON ROUGE, La. (WAFB) - Courts statewide are now proceeding with eviction hearings, however, there’s still help for available families facing financial hardship.
“A lot of times, landlords don’t want to evict tenants,” said Bryan Jeansonne, owner and closing attorney for Lakeland Titles.
Jeansonne is sharing some tips on what people can do to help protect their families from possible eviction.
"You’re going to want to talk to you your landlord, or the property manager if they have one of those, as much as possible, and let them know what your situation is and what you’re dealing with to just see if there’s something that can be worked out,” said Jeansonne.
Jeansonne further explains communication with a landlord, who may also be facing financial hardship, is key. He suggests asking to consider a plan that would allow you to make payments to help avoid falling behind, and ask to waive late fees, which can appear small initially, but will eventually add up.
"Usually, if you can pay something or make some sort of good faith effort, most of your landlords will let you stay and are willing to work with you,” said Jeansonne.
Jeansonne says to make sure you get any agreements made in writing, and to keep receipts for any payments made.
“If you’re going to pay your landlord, if they are going to accept any money from you, they cannot move forward with an eviction. If you do get an eviction notice, you’re going to want to show up to that hearing. It is important that you do not skip that hearing because a lot of times if there’s a communications breakdown, that hearing might be the only chance you really have to talk to your landlord.”
The CARES Act does provide protection for some renters through July 25. The federal moratorium only applies to:
- Tenants with Section 8 vouchers
- Tenants with housing vouchers through the U.S. Department of Agricultural Rural Development
- Tenants who live in a HUD-subsidized property like Section 8 or public housing
- Tenants who live in a Low-Income Housing Tax Credit property
- Tenants whose landlords have a mortgage backed by the federal government
Families seeking mortgage and/or rental assistance can the contact Office of Social Services at 225-358-4561 and/or submit an application online at http://brla.itfrontdesk.com.
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