COVID-19 Legal FAQs for Renters in

This page has local legal information on residential (not commercial) renters’ issues during the COVID-19 pandemic. It is not legal advice, and you should check with your local legal aid and courts for current information. Your local city or county may have additional protections for renters.

This page was last updated on July 6, 2020. It was reviewed by our volunteer attorney experts.

Its information is taken from these sources:Col. Governor executive orderCol. utility informationCol. court announcementsPrinceton Eviction Lab's COVID Policy ScorecardsColumbia Law School COVID-19 Eviction Moratoria analysisEnergy and Policy Institute Utility Disconnect TrackerCol. Governor extension of moratorium

COVID-19 Legal FAQs for Renters in Colorado
Are there any special protections for Colorado renters during the emergency? How long do they last?

Colorado Governor's Executive Order had prohibited the filing and enforcement of evictions through June 13, 2020. The protection has now expired. The order also prohibited landlords from charging late fees for rent not paid during the emergency.

The Governor issued a new rule that landlords must provide tenants with 30 days notice before they can file an eviction lawsuit against them for not paying their rent (rather than the usual 10 days notice). Landlords can begin to give renters notice to pay or quit on June 14th, but tenants will have 30 days to respond before the landlord can file an eviction court case against them.

What do the protections mean for Colorado renters?

The protections mean that in Colorado, after the eviction moratorium expired on June 13, 2020:

  • Your landlord might give you a notice to quit.
  • Your landlord can only file an eviction claim against you for not paying your rent, once they have given you 30 days notice.
  • Hearings are not necessarily suspended, and the court may still hear an eviction case against you.
  • The court can still issue a new order, judgment, or writ of eviction against you.
  • Law enforcement may enforce an existing eviction order against you, to remove you from your home.

Do I still have to pay rent during the emergency?

Yes, Colorado renters still need to pay rent during the emergency.

You were protected through June 13th from eviction for nonpayment of rent, but now this special protection has expired. Your landlord cannot charge you late fees for rent that you did not pay during the emergency period.

The Colorado governor established a special fund to provide rental assistance to low-income households impacted by COVID-19. Call 2-1-1 or go to the 211 website to apply.

If you cannot pay rent, take steps to protect yourself:

  • Get written records of all communication: Keep copies of any letter or email you send, and any responses from the landlord. Keep receipts for any payments you make, that are signed and dated. If you make a payment plan or rent agreement, make sure to get it in writing.
  • Keep proof of COVID-19’s impact on you: Collect documents about your COVID-19-related employment problems, health care issues, or other issues that affect your ability to pay rent. This includes letters from your employer, doctor, insurance provider, child care provider, schools, etc.

Can my landlord evict me during the emergency?

Your landlord could not evict you during the emergency period through June 13th in Colorado, in most situations. If there had been a major lease violation, like if you have done significant damage to the property or are a serious and imminent threat to someone else, they were still able to evict you.

Once the emergency period ended on June 13, landlords can begin to enforce evictions against renters once again. They must give renters 30 days notice before filing an eviction lawsuit based on nonpayment of rent.

If you receive a notice to quit from your landlord, or an eviction lawsuit, reach out for legal help.

Can my utilities be shut off during the emergency?

No. The Colorado Governor's Executive Order prohibits utility companies from shutting off services during the emergency.

Renters must still pay their utility bills. If you need financial assistance for utility costs, you may be able to get help.

Landlords are never allowed to shut off a renter's utilities in an attempt to force the renter out. This is illegal. Reach out to a lawyer for help if this happens to you.

Are you eligible for U.S. national protections against eviction?

Renters in 3 categories have special national protections against being evicted during the Emergency Period of March 27, 2020 to July 24 or 25, 2020. These national protections add onto any state and local protections you have.

Do you fit in any of these 3 categories?

Your home’s owner has a federally backed mortgage loan or other guarantee (like through Freddie Mac or Fannie Mae). Search if your home is covered.
You pay rent through a federal assistance program like the Section 8 Housing Choice Voucher, Rural Development Voucher, or other 'covered housing' program.
You live in Public Housing, where the government is your landlord.

If you are a renter in one of these 3 categories, the federal CARES Act section 4024 gives you these protections. (Remember, these protections add onto any state and local protections you have)

  • Your landlord cannot file a new eviction lawsuit against you for not paying your rent during the Emergency Period. They can still evict you for other behavior, like drug abuse, other criminal activities, or other lease violations.
  • Your landlord cannot charge you new fees or penalties for not paying your rent during the Emergency Period.
  • After the Emergency Period ends, your landlord may not be able to evict you immediately.(Different states interpret the protections ending on July 24 or 25. Check with local lawyers to see about your state). If you have not paid your rent in full during the Emergency Period, your landlord must wait until the period ends before giving you a notice to vacate. For example, they may give you a notice on July 26, and you must be allowed until at least August 25 to leave the property.

For more help on these national protections, reach out for legal and financial help here. Also, use this tool to write a letter to your landlord if you are having issues with rent or eviction.

What if I need repairs?

Can I break my lease?

What do I do if my landlord tries to evict me?

Are eviction cases still proceeding through court?

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