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Last Updated: June 1, 2021
Free Legal Advice & Representation
- Everyone, regardless of immigration status, can get free legal information and advice regarding their housing issues by calling 311 and asking for the "Tenant Helpline" or by directly calling 212-298-3333. The Tenant Helpline is open M-F from 9am to 5pm.
- Folks who are low-income (generally below 200% of the Federal Poverty Guidelines with some exceptions up to 400%) and have a pending eviction case can get a free lawyer by calling the Tenant Helpline. The lawyers can also assist in applying for rent assistance. Representation may also be available for emergency repair cases. Representation is available regardless of immigration status.
Emergency Rental Assistance Program
- As of June 1, 2021, applications are open for the New York State Emergency Rental Assistance Program (ERAP). Eligible households may receive up to 12 months of back rent as well as 3 months of future rent and utility assistance. Any money issued through this program does not have to be paid back.
- Apply here: https://nysrenthelp.otda.ny.gov/en/
- Fell behind in rent since March 13, 2020; AND
- Qualified for unemployment benefits or lost income and/or have increased expenses due to COVID-19; AND
- Household income (before taxes) is at or below 80% of the Area Median Income (AMI):
- 1 Person Household = $66,850
- 2 Person Household = $76,400
- 3 Person Household = $85,950
- 4 Person Household = $95,450
- 5 Person Household = $103,100
- 6 Person Household = $110,750
- Applications in the first 30 days will prioritize households at or below 50% of AMI and where at least one household member is in one of the following categories:
- unemployed for at least 90 days
- experiencing domestic violence or is a survivor of human trafficking
- has an eviction case pending in court
- lives in a community that was disproportionately impacted by COVID-19
- lives in a building with 20 or fewer units
- resides in a mobile home
- After the first 30 days, funds will be available on a first come, first served basis. For this reason, people should apply as soon as possible even if they are not in a priority group.
- After that, funds will be available on a first come, first served basis. For this reason, people should apply as soon as possible even if they are not in a priority group. Anyone who needs help applying can reach out to the following Queens community groups:
- More information here: https://www1.nyc.gov/site/hra/help/new-york-emergency-rental-assistance-program-erap.page
Residential Eviction Protection/Eviction Moratorium
- Eviction cases are no longer on pause. If someone wants to pause their eviction case or stop their landlord from filing a case, they must file a hardship declaration. If they file a hardship declaration, the court will stay any pending cases until August 31, 2021 unless the case falls under one of the exceptions listed below.
- If an eviction case has not been started, the tenant can fill out the hardship declaration and send to the landlord to stop the landlord from starting the case until after August 31, 2021.
- There is a free service to submit the hardship declaration online. They will send it via USPS certified mail and email.