Need legal help? Maryland AG issues alert on pandemic evictions

After the Biden administration issued a new order temporarily halting evictions in areas where the coronavirus is surging, Maryland Attorney General Brian Frosh has issued a consumer alert reminding residents to be aware of their rights, because the protections could shift depending on the virus’s spread.

The new order from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention blocks evictions in places of substantial or high community transmission until Oct. 3.

“Although a majority of Maryland counties and Baltimore City currently meet this benchmark, not all do, meaning that the CDC’s order will not apply to all Marylanders facing eviction,” stated the consumer alert from Frosh’s office. “And because the applicability of the order is tied to community transmission levels, it is possible that who is covered by the order could change over time.”

Maryland’s own eviction moratorium, which provides a legal defense for tenants if they can show a substantial loss of income from COVID-19, also remains in effect until Sunday.

The CDC extension was designed to help more people apply for rental assistance. If you need help with rent and utilities, there are millions of dollars in federal funding that still need to be distributed. You can look up programs on the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau website.

“Most of these resources, however, are available only while you are still living in your rental home, so if you are or may be facing eviction, it is extremely important that you seek help before simply moving out,” the alert stated.

In addition, you can defend yourself against an eviction notice in court under the CDC order. If you receive a notice of a court hearing related to an eviction, it’s important that you show up to defend yourself.

If you plan on representing yourself in court, the Maryland Court Self-Help Center could be able to help prepare your case. There is more information online. You can also call 410-260-1392.

The consumer alert letter also provides contact information for nonprofit legal service organizations across Maryland.

Allegany County

Anne Arundel County

  • Community Legal Services: 240-391-6370; clspgc.org.
  • Maryland Legal Aid: 410-972-2700; mdlab.org.

Baltimore City

  • Disability Rights Maryland (If eviction is related to disability): 410-727-6352; disabilityrightsmd.org.
  • Homeless Persons Representation Project (Public/Subsidized Housing): 410-685-6859; hprplaw.org.
  • Maryland Legal Aid: 410-972-7750; mdlab.org.
  • Pro Bono Resource Center: 443-703-3053; probonomd.org.
  • Public Justice Center: 410-625-9409; publicjustice.org.
  • St. Ambrose Housing Aid Center: 410-366-8550 x249; stambros.org.

Baltimore County

Caroline County

Carroll County

  • Maryland Legal Aid: 301-694-7414; mdlab.org.

Calvert County

  • Maryland Legal Aid: 301-932-6661; mdlab.org.

Cecil County

  • Maryland Legal Aid: 410-836-8202; mdlab.org.

Charles County

  • Maryland Legal Aid: 301-932-6661; mdlab.org.

Dorchester County

Frederick County

  • Maryland Legal Aid: 301-694-7414; mdlab.org.

Garrett County

  • Maryland Legal Aid: 301-777-7474; mdlab.org.

Harford County

  • Maryland Legal Aid: 410-836-8202; mdlab.org.

Howard County

  • Maryland Legal Aid: 410-972-2700; mdlab.org.

Kent County

Montgomery County

  • Maryland Legal Aid: 240-314-0373; mdlab.org.
  • Montgomery County Bar Foundation: 301-424-7651; barmont.org.

Prince George’s County

  • Community Legal Services: 240-391-6370; clspgc.org.
  • Maryland Legal Aid: 301-560-2100; mdlab.org.

Queen Anne’s County

St. Mary’s County

  • Maryland Legal Aid: 301-932-6661; mdlab.org.

Somerset County

  • Maryland Legal Aid: 410-546-5511; mdlab.org.

Talbot County

Washington County

  • Maryland Legal Aid: 301-694-7414; mdlab.org.

Wicomico County

Worcester County

  • Maryland Legal Aid: 410-546-5511; mdlab.org.

Jack Moore

Jack Moore joined WTOP.com as a digital writer/editor in July 2016. Previous to his current role, he covered federal government management and technology as the news editor at Nextgov.com, part of Government Executive Media Group.

This article was written by WTOP’s news partners at Maryland Matters and republished with permission. Sign up for Maryland Matters’ free email subscription today.

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