COVID-19

2020 COVID-19 Effects on Default Law Firms

Evictions delay if borrower is affected by COVID-19.

All sales stopped for 30 days per executive order. All Delaware mediations are pushed out to after May 18, 2020.

California is limiting all gatherings of more than 50 persons.

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis signed an order on June 1, 2020, extending foreclosure and eviction moratoriums in Florida until July 1, 2020. Also, on May 28, 2020, Broward County, Florida (Ft. Lauderdale) Chief Judge, Jack Tuter, issued an administrative order updating processes regarding the CARES Act for proceeding with foreclosures effective June 2, 2020.

Click here to view the order.

The Illinois Supreme Court has suggested that all courts seek to limit in-person court proceedings by rescheduling court events to a later date, especially jury trials and large docket calls, or, alternatively, by holding proceedings via telephone or video remote appearance where possible. In response, many Illinois counties have reduced or postponed for a 30-day period most pending mortgage foreclosure matters. The most-current information on court closures, which continues to change as new information is released and individual courts reassess their responses, can be found here: illinoiscourts.gov/Administrative/covid-19.asp. On March 16, 2020, the Circuit Court of Cook County issued a General Administrative order providing that “all mortgage foreclosures, evictions, orders for possession, and judicial sales, including those previously ordered and scheduled, are stayed for thirty (30) days.” All pending hearings will be continued by the assigned judge or clerk of court to a date at least 30 days beyond the presently scheduled date. The clerk’s office has indicated that new dates for all pending hearings should be issued in the next few days. What is currently being delayed? What is not currently being delayed? • Mediations/Case Management Conferences • Motions for Judgment (i.e., judgments of foreclosure and sale) • Motions for Entry of an Order Approving Sale (OAS) • Scheduling and/or court appearances on any non-emergency motion • Sales conducted by the Sheriff of Cook County• Filing new cases (First Legal) • Completing service of process • Placing publication notices • Filing motions and scheduling same for hearing on or after April 16, 2020 (subject to calendar availability) • We assume that the court will still entertain and enter agreed orders. (Whether they extend that to apply to Motions for Entry of a Consent Foreclosure remains to be seen.)

March 17, 2020: Kansas Governor Laura Kelly issued an Executive Order No. 20-06 (order). In order to mitigate the economic effects of the spread of COVID-19, the order directs and orders all financial institutions operating in Kansas to “temporarily suspend the initiation of any mortgage foreclosure efforts or judicial proceedings and any commercial or residential eviction efforts or judicial proceedings until May 1, 2020.” The order is effective as of March 17, 2020. While the order does not specifically address completion or continuation of proceedings that were already initiated as of the effective date of the order, the intent and spirit of the order is to cease foreclosure and eviction proceedings. Out of an abundance of caution, pending further clarification from the Governor and the courts, we recommend the cancelation of sales and suspension of judicial proceedings related to foreclosure and eviction through and including May 1, 2020. We will be placing all such matters on hold until after May 1, 2020 or until such time as we receive further guidance.

Governor’s Order JBE 2020-30 has affected all Sheriff sales dates set up to 4/13/20. Order is for the term of March 17 to April 13. All sales for all Parishes that are set through April 13, 2020, are cancelled. Acadia, Beauregard, Bienville, Caddo, Calcasieu, Caldwell, Cameron, Catahoula Counties are closed to the public, accepting mailed recordings, and are still indexing. Allen County is closed to the public, but they are still accepting filings via mail, overnight delivery, and e-recordings. Ascension and Assumption County are limiting their hours from 8:30 a.m.–1:30 p.m. and are accepting filings via mail and walk-up. Bossier County is open from 9:00 a.m.–1:00 p.m., is closed to the public, but is accepting filings via email and overnight delivery. Claiborne County is open 8:30 a.m.–1:00 p.m., and is accepting filings via mail and overnight delivery. Concordia, DeSoto, East Baton Rouge, East Carroll Counties are accepting docs via mail and overnight delivery. East Feliciana County is closed to the public and open from 8:30 a.m.–1:00 p.m. Franklin County is closed to the public but open 8:30 a.m.–4:30 p.m. Accepting mail and overnight deliveries and has a dropbox. Still recording and indexing. Grant County is closed to the public but open from 8:30 a.m.–4:30 p.m. Accepting mail and overnight deliveries. NO dropbox. Still recording and indexing. Iberia County is closed to the public but open 8:30 a.m.–1:00 p.m. Accepting mail and overnight deliveries and has a dropbox. Still recording and indexing. Iberville County is closed to the public. Accepting drop off by door, mail, and overnight deliveries. Still recording and indexing. Jackson County is closed to the public. Accepting mail and working on getting dropbox for overnight deliveries. Still recording and indexing. Jefferson County is accepting mail and overnight deliveries. Still recording and indexing. Jefferson Davis County is closed to the public but open 8:30 a.m.–4:30 p.m. Accepting mail and overnight deliveries. NO dropbox. Still recording and indexing. La Salle County is still accepting mail and overnight deliveries. Recording and indexing. Lafayette County is closed to the public. Has dropbox, accepting mail, and overnight deliveries. Still recording and indexing. Lafourche is still accepting mail and overnight deliveries. Recording and indexing. Lincoln County is closed to the public. Accepting mail and overnight packages. Still recording and indexing. Madison County is closed to the public but accepting drive by recordings between 9:00 a.m.–1:00 p.m. and mailed recordings; also indexing. Morehouse County is closed to the public but accepting drive-by recordings and mailed recordings; also indexing. Natchitoches County hours are 10:30 a.m.–1:00 pm; filings can be mailed or overnighted. Also accepting e-recordings. Orleans County is accepting recording via mailed recordings; also indexing. Ouachita County is closed to the public. Accepting mail and overnight packages. Still recording and indexing. Waiving fax filing fees. Plaquemines County is closed to the public. Accepting mail and overnight packages. Still recording and indexing. Pointe Coupee, Rapides, Red River, Richland, Sabine Counties are accepting mailed recordings; also indexing. St. Bernard County is closed. St. Charles County is accepting mailed recordings; also indexing. St. Helena County is closed to the public. Accepting mail and overnight packages. Still recording and indexing. St. James, St. John the Baptist Counties are accepting mailed recordings; also indexing. St. Landry County is closed to the public. Accepting mail and overnight packages. Still recording and indexing. St. Martin County is not open to the public; still accepting mail and has a dropbox in the lobby; still indexing. St. Mary is closed to the public. Accepting mail and overnight packages. Still recording and indexing. St. Tammany County is closed to the public, accepting mailed recordings; still indexing. Tangipahoa County is closed to the public; open 9:00 a.m.–12:00 p.m. to process recording received by e-recording; working on a dropbox; still indexing. Tensas County is closed to the public; accepting mail; still indexing. Terrebonne County is closed to the public and accepting mail. You can drop off recordings at the front door and someone will hand deliver them to the recording office; still indexing. Union County is closed to the public; accepting mail; drop-off at front door; still indexing. Vermilion County is closed to the public; accepting mail; no drop off; still indexing. Vernon County is closed to the public; accepting mail; can drop off in person at the front door; still indexing. Washington County is limiting access, accepting mailings, e-recording is encouraged. Webster County is closed to the public; accepting mail; front-door drop-off with security guard; still indexing. West Carroll County is closed to the public; prefers e-recording; Not guaranteeing they are accepting mail-ins; still indexing. West Carroll County is closed to the public; accepting mail; still indexing. West Feliciana County is closed to the public; dropbox at the building; accepting mail; still indexing. Winn County is closed to the public; accepting mail. Hours are 8:00 a.m.–12:00 pm; still indexing. BANKRUPTCY COURTS: All courts remain open for filing purposes. No restrictions on filings. Hearings being held over the phone instead of in person.

Now allowing e-notary as an emergency solution.

In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Supreme Judicial Court issued an order, authorizing attorneys and self-represented parties, in all courts and case types, to electronically sign documents served on another party or filed with the court. The order is effective April 7, 2020.

All foreclosure sales postponed until after April 30. UPDATE: Warren County sales have been adjourned to May 18 at the earliest.

USDC District of Oregon: All court locations closed to the public only, but available by telephone, e-filing continues, conventional filings must go in specified dropboxes rather than to the filing window. Civil trials, criminal trials, and in-court appearances scheduled before 4/26 are continued. Telephonic hearings are still being held. Statewide Circuit: The court’s order only covers through March 27, but we expect there will be an additional order further extending the time period. Level 3 Restriction per Chief Justice Order 20-006 through at least March 27, 2020. All jury trials (except criminal trials where there is a statutory or constitutional right to a speedy trial that would be jeopardized) are postponed without motion through March 27. No new trials scheduled between now and March 27. For all Forcible Entry and Detailer cases, the first appearance required in those cases is continued without a motion, and all trials scheduled before March 27 are continued without a motion. Landlords can file a motion for an order requiring the tenant to pay rent while the case is pending. All in-person hearings/trials postponed, and nothing new will be scheduled during level 3 status. Applies to Circuit, Appellate, and Supreme levels. Additional instructions per county press releases/PJOs: Benton County Discourages people from coming into court unless they have something scheduled. Court staff are working remotely to the extent possible; parties are encouraged to call in to ascertain availability of persons. One judge is available at the court each day. Clackamas County: There is a moratorium on evictions until at least 4/30; reduced phone line and clerk availability (10 a.m.–4:00 p.m. only); and no meetings or conferences of more than five people are allowed. Columbia County: Limited public counter hours: Monday–Friday, 9:00–11:00 a.m./2:00–4:00 p.m. Coos/Curry County: Court only open for legally required in-person services. Gilliam County: Operating in-person by appointment only. Hood River County: Hours of operation are Tuesday–Thursday, 10:00 a.m.–2:00 p.m. Parties are advised to call ahead to schedule the filing of time sensitive documents. Jackson County: Court only open for legally required in-person services. Josephine County: Court only open for legally required in-person services. Lincoln County: Trials are cancelled and won’t be rescheduled until at least 5/1/20. Marion County: Court only open for legally required in-person services; limited phone hours. Multnomah County: Phone lines closed, filing windows open. All eviction proceedings are suspended until at least April 30, 2020, or later. The Multnomah County Sheriff’s office is not allowed to enforce any evictions while the State of Oregon is in a state of emergency. Further, a moratorium is in effect for any residential evictions where the tenant can establish they fell behind in payments due to the COVID-19 outbreak, and they will be allowed six months to cure any deficiency in their payments before they can be evicted. Morrow/Umatilla County: Hermiston location is closed—must contact Pendleton location. Polk County: Hours of operation: Monday–Friday, 9:00 a.m.–12:00 p.m./1:00–3:00 p.m. Sherman County: Hours of operation: by appointment only. Tillamook County: Limited public counter hours Monday-Friday, 1:00-2:00 p.m.; phone lines remain open. Wasco County: Hours of operation: Monday-Wednesday-Friday 10:00 a.m.–2:00 p.m.; call ahead to schedule filing of time sensitive documents. Washington County: Phone lines are open Monday–Friday, 10:00 a.m.–3:00 p.m. For all Forcible Entry and Detailer cases, the first appearance required in those cases is continued without a motion until April 30, 2020, and all trials scheduled are continued without a motion. Landlords can file a motion for an order requiring the tenant to pay rent while the case is pending. Wheeler County Hours of operation: by appt only. Yamhill County: Hours of operation: Monday–Friday, 10:00 a.m.–12:00 p.m./1:00–3:00 p.m. UPDATE: All court locations closed to the public only, but available by telephone. All court locations closed to the public only, but available by telephone. E-filing continues—conventional filings must go in specified dropboxes rather than the filing window. Civil trials, criminal trials, and in-court appearances scheduled before 4/26 are continued. Telephonic hearings are still being held. Standing Order 2020-7 re telephonic appearances is in effect for 90 days. Amended CJO 20-006 circulated 03/27/20. CJ working to extend/suspend timelines currently set by statute or rule. Category 3 essential hearings conducted remotely. FED—Petitioners allowed to file complaints and court will issue summons, but first appearances won’t be scheduled until at least 6/1/20. No party shall be required to appear at the date on the summons and the time allowed to file an answer will be extended. The court will allow time for an answer to be filed before scheduling the appearance date. Landlords wishing to collect rents pending trial must file a motion for the court to enter an order. All in-person hearings/trials postponed and nothing new will be scheduled during level 3 status. Requests for telephonic appearances for certain civil motions are waived. UPDATE: All civil trials scheduled before July 6 are being reset.

State has ordered all non-essential businesses to close for the foreseeable future. Only pertinent companies are allowed to be open: grocery stores, gas stations. Courts have cancelled all hearings at this time. All foreclosure sales scheduled for April 6 cancelled and rescheduled for June 8. Dauphin County is adjourning foreclosure sales from April 16 to June 11. UPDATE: Westmoreland sales are being adjourned from May 4 to June 1.

WV court shutdown extended to May 1.

Update: Multi-State Foreclosure Laws & Regulations

One of our partners, Hello Solutions, compiled the latest state foreclosure law changes so you don’t have to. See the most recent changes below, presented by members of the Hello Solutions attorney network, and visit the COVID-19 multi-state update page anytime for more information. We’re adding more states, and updating information regularly, so please stay tuned.