North Carolina laws have been temporarily changed due to the coronavirus crisis. The fact sheet was created by the North Carolina Justice Center. This fact sheet was accurate as of April 5, 2020. It is very likely that the rules will be different if you are reading this at a later time. You can view updates on their website at www.ncjustice.org
Can I be evicted if I can’t pay my rent?
No. Rules are temporarily in place to keep you from being evicted until April 17, 2020. We expect a new order to come out about evictions any day.
Can my landlord evict me in some other way besides taking me to court?
No. Your landlord cannot evict you by sending you a letter, telling you to leave, changing the locks, calling the police, or any other method. This includes tenants who live in hotels. Your landlord can only evict you by taking you to court. Right now, court cases are postponed until April 17, 2020. A new order may come out soon extending that to a later date.
Do I still owe rent?
Yes. You are still obligated to pay rent to your landlord. You just can’t be evicted right now if you can’t pay. You should speak with your landlord and see if they can provide you any flexibility during this time.
Can my landlord charge me a late fee if I don’t pay my rent on time due to the coronavirus crisis?
Yes. However, you should talk to your landlord to see if they will waive any late fees.
What if I live in public housing or receive government housing assistance?
If you live in public housing, have a Section 8 voucher, or receive any other rent assistance from the federal government, there is a new law stopping all evictions until July 24, 2020. This law may also protect you if your landlord has a certain type of mortgage. Since this law is complicated, please speak with a legal services organization to see if this law might apply to you. If your income has gone down, you should talk to your landlord.
Will my electric, gas or water be shut off if I can’t pay?
No. The governor has issued an order that water, gas, and electric utilities CANNOT be shut off during the time of the coronavirus crisis.
Can my utility company or my landlord charge me a late fee if I do not pay my utilities?
No. The governor’s order says that water, gas, and electric providers CANNOT charge you a late fee if you do not pay your utilities during this coronavirus crisis.
Do I still have to pay my water, electric, and gas bills?
Yes. You are still responsible for paying the bill, they just cannot shut off the utility if you cannot pay. You should talk to the utility company or your landlord. They have to offer you a six month payment plan to pay back what you owe.
What about telephone or internet bills?
You still have to pay your telephone and internet bill. The governor’s order doesn’t cover these types of bills. However, you should still contact the utility provider and see if they will work with you. Some internet providers are providing free internet to families with children or college students in the home.