COVID-19 emergency tenant protections

If you can pay your rent, you should do so. However, if you cannot pay and your landlord tries to evict you, these protections may safeguard you against eviction.

What to know

These government actions are difficult to understand: if you receive eviction documents, you should immediately contact the Eviction Defense Collaborative at (415) 659-9184 or legal@evictiondefense.org, they will connect you to an attorney. If you need advice about a specific situation, you can also contact the Rent Board, a mediator, or a tenant counselor for more information. 

Please keep in mind, rent is still owed – it has not been forgiven or cancelled. You should respond to any nonpayment notice from a landlord before it expires, and you should pay at least 25% of the rent due each month between September 1, 2020 and September 30, 2021. You can either pay 25% each month or make a lump-sum payment before September 30. 

 

I could not pay rent between March 1 - August 31, 2020

AB-832 prohibits evictions for nonpayment of rent for these months. The landlord cannot evict, but can take the tenant to small claims court starting November 1, 2021 for any rent that is still unpaid.  AB-832 requires the tenant to provide landlord a signed declaration in response to a 15-day notice. 

I cannot pay rent between September 1, 2020 and September 30, 2021

For rent due between September 2020 – September 2021, AB-832 prohibits evictions for nonpayment of rent, and allows the landlord to take the tenant to small claims court starting November 1, 2021 for any rent that is still unpaid. AB-832 requires the tenant to give the landlord signed declaration(s) in response to 15-day notice(s),  AND by September 30, 2021 to pay at least 25% of the missed rent from September 2020 – September 2021 rents (can be lump-sum).

There are currently no eviction protections after September 30, 2021

I could not pay rent before March 1, 2020

For rental assistance for unpaid rents from before March 2020, please contact Eviction Defense Collaborative’s Rental Assistance Disbursement Component (RADCo) at EDCRADCo@evictiondefense.org or 415-470-5211.

Can I be evicted even if I am paying my rent in full?

Evictions for reasons other than nonpayment can proceed only if necessary due to violence, threat of violence, health/safety issues, or if they are based on the Ellis Act. However, this limit on evictions expires on September 30, 2021 (Ordinance No. 083-21). Starting October 1, evictions not based on unpaid rent may proceed subject to the City’s Rent Ordinance, unless extended.

 

Get help

Rental assistance 

Legal help for tenants (CALL OR EMAIL IMMEDIATELY IF YOU RECEIVE EVICTION DOCUMENTS)  

Tenant counseling 

  • Bill Sorro Housing Program (BiSHoP
    Call or email at (415) 513-5177 or info@bishopsf.org 
    Languages: English, French, Spanish, Tagalog 

Counseling for residential hotel (SRO) tenants 

  • Mission SRO Collaborative 
    Call  (415) 282-6209 ext. 150  

Mediation (available to tenants and landlords) 

General information for tenants 

  • Visit the San  Francisco Anti-Displacement Coalition’s website  

Counseling at the San  Francisco Rent Board (available to tenants and landlords) 

  • Call (415) 252-4600, Monday-Friday, 9 am – 12 pm and 1 pm – 4 pm 

Resources for landlords 

 

Last updated September 03, 2021