Polis Suspends Late Rent Fees Until 2021

October 16, 2020
Signs calling for a rent strike, seen in Capitol Hill. April 1, 2020.Signs calling for a rent strike, seen in Capitol Hill. April 1, 2020.Kevin J. Beaty/Denverite
Signs calling for a rent strike, seen in Capitol Hill. April 1, 2020.

Gov. Jared Polis on Thursday ordered landlords to stop assessing fees for late rent. The executive order will be in place until Dec. 31, and means that renters cannot be penalized for missed rent payments from now until the end of the year.

The order supplements the federal Centers for Disease Control moratorium on evictions, which says that landlords can’t carry out evictions for non-payment through Dec. 31.

Renters will still be required to repay missed rent or face eviction after the CDC order expires. But Polis’ new ban on late fees means that they won’t face extra charges for missed payments.

“Implementing these thoughtful recommendations is another important step toward creating housing stability for more Coloradans during this pandemic,” Polis said in a news release.

The late-fee order was one of the recommendations of the Special Eviction Prevention Task Force that Polis convened. Polis also has ordered landlords to continue notifying tenants about the CDC order.

Facing eviction? Read our guide.

The task force has also recommended that the governor issue his own order limiting evictions. The group recommended that the state order also prevent evictions for people whose leases have expired.

The current CDC order only applies to people who can attest that they failed to pay rent because of a financial hardship related to the pandemic. Some courts in Colorado are still accepting eviction filings, though, and judges are taking different approaches to interpreting the CDC ban.

Evictions ground to a halt early in the pandemic, but landlords began to file hundreds of new cases late in the summer.