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COVID-19 Eviction Moratorium

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COVID-19 Emergency Eviction Moratorium Ordinance



The City of Santa Clara recently adopted an ordinance that prevents residential tenants, who have experienced a loss of income due to COVID-19 related impacts, from being evicted in Santa Clara.  The ordinance went into effect on March 24, 2020.

Here is information landlords & tenants need to know about the moratorium

The temporary ban on residential evictions applies to tenants who are renting in a building or portion of a building that is used as a home, residence or sleeping place in Santa Clara for periods in excess of seven days. The eviction protections for residential tenants is for nonpayment of rent due to financial hardship resulting from COVID-19.  

NOTE:  The moratorium only applies to residential evictions for nonpayment of rent and no-fault evictions due to impacts of the COVID-19 outbreak.

  • There is no moratorium on lawful evictions for other just causes.
  • This moratorium DOES NOT change the rental payment(s) that may be due.


If you are a renter, you must demonstrate two things to stop an eviction under the City's eviction moratorium:

1. You have been impacted by COVID-19. Examples of being impacted by COVID-19 include:

  • job loss
  • a reduction of compensated hours of work
  • employer’s business closure
  • missing work due to a minor child’s school closure; or
  • other similarly caused reason resulting in a loss of income due to COVID-19. 

2. You have suffered a substantial loss of income due to COVID-19 or related emergency declarations by County of Santa Clara, State of California or federal agencies. 

You must provide documentation to your landlord showing you have experienced a substantial loss of income. Examples of documentation include:

  • Letter from an employer citing COVID-19 as a reason for reduced work hours or termination
  • Paycheck stubs from before and after the COVID-19 outbreak
  • Bank statements showing your financial situation before and after the outbreak


Information for Renters

If your landlord initiates an eviction for nonpayment of rent during the moratorium, you should notify your landlord that your income has been reduced substantially due to COVID-19. You should begin collecting documentation as soon as possible.

To notify your landlord, fill out the Notice of Inability to Pay Rent form to show reduced income:

Notice of Inability to Pay Rent Form

NOTE: When the moratorium ends, your landlord may seek unpaid rent - i.e., past due rent that was not paid during the moratorium - but not until 90 days after the moratorium ends.

Information for Landlords

If you are a landlord, and you initiate an eviction for nonpayment of rent during the moratorium, you must provide tenants with written notice of the eviction moratorium  (provide this document) when serving a notice of termination.

Background about the COVID-19 Eviction Moratorium

On March 24, 2020, the Santa Clara City Council approved a temporary eviction moratorium in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.  The moratorium went into effect immediately on March 24, 2020 and will expire 45 days later - on May 8, 2020 - unless extended by the City Council.

View the official emergency ordinance that put the moratorium into effect.

The Council will also consider adopting a  regular ordinance at the April 7, 2020 meeting.  If adopted, the ordinance will go into effect on May 7, 2020 and will be set to expire on August 5, 2020, unless extended by the Council.

Tenant Landlord Services

During the moratorium, landlords and tenants are encouraged to discuss with each other the impacts of COVID-19 on their income and to negotiate a reasonable plan to pay the rent. These efforts will save time, expense, anxiety and uncertainty for both parties. This is an opportunity for both sides to work together during this public health emergency.

The Housing and Community Service Division currently manages an agreement with Project Sentinel for Tenant-Landlord Dispute Resolution Services. The Dispute Resolution Services Program provides counseling services on rights and responsibilities, information and referral services, educational services, and various dispute resolution alternatives including tenant/landlord mediation. The program helps to assure that Santa Clara residents are treated in accordance with all applicable federal, state and local laws.

For more information about Project Sentinel, Read more... 

Project Sentinel       (408) 720-9888

1490 El Camino Real, Santa Clara, CA 95050



If you are at risk of losing your housing or missing a rent payment, please contact the Homelessness Prevention System to request assistance. The Santa Clara County Homelessness Prevention System provides temporary financial assistance (e.g., rent, deposit, or utility payments) and supportive services to low-income families or individuals who are at risk of losing their housing and becoming homeless. 

Contact Homelessness Prevention System by calling 408-780-9134 or emailing During this current public health crisis, we recommend calling agencies before going into the office to confirm open hours.  If needed, the agency may be able to screen you for assistance over the phone to avoid unnecessary visits.

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