March 23, 2020

Pennsylvania and New Jersey – Foreclosure Moratorium

In the wake of the nation-wide trend of shuttering non-essential businesses, schools and public activities, state and federal legislatures are implementing legislation and policy initiatives that impact financial institutions, landlords and other creditors.

Nationally, HUD, Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac have suspended foreclosures and evictions for sixty (60) days.

Pennsylvania – On March 16, 2020, the Pennsylvania Supreme Court declared a state-wide judicial emergency effective until April 14, 2020. On March 18, 2020, the Supreme Court issued guidance making clear that during the judicial emergency, no eviction, ejectment or other displacement from a residence based on failure to make payment can be made. This appears to only apply to residential/consumer matters and not commercial matters (though arguably a personal guaranty of a commercial facility would fall into this category).

Pennsylvania state courts are currently closed to the public for non-essential functions through at least April 3, 2020. All time calculations and deadlines relevant to court cases or other business are suspended through April 3, 2020. Court calendars, scheduling notices, subpoenas and appearances are continued until further notice.

New Jersey – On March 19, 2020, New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy signed Executive Order No. 106, which imposes a moratorium on removing individuals from their homes via eviction or foreclosure proceedings. The Governor has asked that financial institutions holding residential or commercial mortgages, equity loans, lines of credit or business loans implement a process to work with the borrowers to avoid foreclosure or default arising out of the financial hardships caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, or any government response thereto.

Delaware – The Supreme Court of Delaware declared a judicial emergency effective as of March 16, 2020 at 8 am. On March 13, 2020, the Delaware Justice of the Peace issued a standing order suspending all landlord/tenant, debt, replevin and trespass proceedings scheduled for in-court appearances and all evictions scheduled for March 17, 2020 through April 16, 2020 to be rescheduled not earlier than May 1, 2020.

As of this morning, March 23, 2020, all courthouses in the state of Delaware are closed until April 15, 2020.

If you have questions please contact Julie M. Murphy at 856.355.2992 or murphy@hylandlevin.com.