Legal FAQs for Renters in
Table of Contents
Jump to the section that matches your situation
Do I have housing protections because of COVID-19?
My landlord gave me an eviction notice
What can I do?
I've been sued in court for eviction
What can I do?
How can I get rent help?
Learn about Rent Assistance programs to help with housing costs
Do I have housing protections because of COVID-19?
- Are there any special protections for Nevada renters during the emergency?
The national CDC eviction moratorium ended on August 26, 2021. Please reach out to legal services if you are worried about eviction.
Nevada's statewide eviction protections expired on May 31, 2021.
Landlords may now try to sue tenants to evict them. If you are worried about an eviction, reach out as soon as possible to your local legal aid group. The lawyers may be able to help you find protections and services to deal with your eviction.
Some Nevada renters may still be protected under the national moratorium.
Nevada's now-expired protection had allowed renters to stop an eviction by giving their landlord a signed, written document. This document must verify that they meet the 3 criteria listed below.
Renters were eligible for the protection if :
- They are unable to pay rent because of COVID-hardship, and
- They expect to make less than $99,000 in 2020 (or $198,000 if filing jointly), and
- They are likely to become homeless or forced to live in a group living situation if evicted.
This protection doesn't apply to renters who have violated their lease (aside from rent or fee payments).
Nevada requires landlords to notify their tenants about this eviction protection when they are filing for eviction. Landlords are required to notify the tenant about the moratorium, provide the Tenant Declaration, and include information about rental assistance programs. The Informational statement is available here.
- What do the protections mean for Nevada renters?
Since emergency protections have expired, then for renters in Nevada:
- Your landlord can still give you a notice to quit.
- Your landlord can still file an eviction claim against you.
- Hearings on eviction depend on local regulations, 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 can still enforce an existing eviction order against you, to remove you from your home.
- Do I still have to pay rent during the COVID-19 emergency in Nevada?
Yes, Nevada renters still need to pay rent during the emergency, but landlords cannot charge late fees.
If you cannot pay rent, take steps to protect yourself:
- Apply for rental assistance: If you need financial assistance for housing costs like rent or utility bills, you may be able to get help. Apply as soon as possible.
- Communicate with your landlord: Send a written letter or email to your landlord as soon as possible. Explain why you cannot pay the rent because of COVID-19 impact. You can also try to negotiate with your landlord to make a payment plan or get a temporary rent reduction. Get help here for drafting and mailing a letter to your landlord. You can also use this letter-writing tool here.
- 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. 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 in Nevada?
After Nevada protections expired on May 31, 2021, landlords may try to evict tenants.
If you receive a notice to quit from your landlord, or an eviction lawsuit, reach out for legal help.
Also, if you think your landlord is trying to evict you illegally, you can file a complaint with the Attorney General’s Office online or over the phone at 1-888-434-9989.
- Can my utilities be shut off during COVID-19 in Nevada?
Some Nevada utility companies have suspended shutoffs for the duration of the crisis. Check with your local providers to see if you have any protections.
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 eviction protections under the CDC Eviction Moratorium?
What is the CDC Eviction Moratorium?
The CDC Eviction Moratorium orders that renters should be protected from eviction if they are unable to pay their rent due to hardships like job loss, income loss, or medical expenses. This protection lasts from September 4, 2020 through August 26, 2021.
The CDC Eviction Moratorium is not automatic protection against eviction. Renters need to fill in a Declaration document and give it to their landlord to get the protection.
Landlords may still try to file an eviction lawsuit against renters, but renters can use the moratorium to defend themselves in court.
Do you qualify for protection under the CDC Eviction Moratorium?
The CDC Eviction Moratorium applies to people who:
- Live in a county with High or Substantial COVID rates. Find your county at the CDC tracker map (https://covid.cdc.gov/covid-data-tracker/#county-view). If your county has been in the Moderate or Low category for 14 consecutive days, then the Moratorium does not apply to you.
- Rent a home in the United States; AND
- Make less than $99,000 (or $198,000 if you file a joint tax return); AND
- Are facing eviction based on nonpayment of rent (not for other problems, like lease violations or criminal activity); AND
- Can show they’re unable to pay rent because they’ve had a financial hardship, like losing a job, decrease in income, or medical bills; AND
- Can show that they’ve been trying their hardest to pay their rent and find any rental assistance; AND
- Can show that they’re at risk of homelessness if they were to be evicted.
If you live in a state, county, or city that has an eviction moratorium, the CDC Eviction Moratorium doesn’t replace this local one. It adds on top of your local protections.
What does the CDC Eviction Moratorium get you?
The CDC Eviction moratorium can stop an eviction proceeding against you. It could stop your landlord from removing you from your home, or from a court giving your landlord an eviction order through August 26, 2021.
- If your landlord has already started an eviction lawsuit against you, you can use the CDC Eviction Moratorium as a defense in court.
- You can use the Declaration form to tell your landlord that you are protected from eviction, and to ask the court to stop the eviction.
- You must follow the process below to be protected by the CDC Eviction Moratorium.
The CDC Eviction Moratorium does NOT get you rent relief:
- Even if you fill in the Declaration, this does not cancel rent that you owe, or stop rent or late fees from building up.
- After the CDC Moratorium expires on August 26, 2021, you may be evicted for the rent that you owe.
The CDC Eviction Moratorium may NOT stop a landlord from suing you:
- Even after you fill in the Declaration and send it to your landlord, they might still file an eviction lawsuit against you.
- You can bring the Declaration to the court eviction hearing, to ask the court to stop the eviction.
- Call a local lawyer for help if your landlord sues you for eviction.
How do you use the CDC Eviction Moratorium to protect yourself?
To secure CDC Eviction Moratorium protection, follow these steps:
- Apply for rental assistance. Look for any rental and utility assistance in your area, and submit applications to these programs. Find local assistance programs here.
- Fill out Declarations. You and every adult in the household need to fill out a Declaration about your financial hardships and your attempts to get assistance. In the Declaration, you must say that you are telling the truth and that you may face legal consequences if you are lying. You can use this guide for help with the Declaration.
- Send the Declarations to your landlord, and also tell the landlord that you will do your best to pay when you can. Keep a copy of the Declarations, as well as any receipt or documentation that you have sent it to your landlord (like email receipt or screenshots of the message). These can be useful evidence that you followed the process correctly.
- Protections through August 26th. After you send this, your landlord cannot remove you from your home for nonpayment of rent through August 26, 2021. They are also never allowed to harass or intimidate you, or force you to leave the home without a court order.
- If your landlord has filed an eviction lawsuit against you, you can bring your Declarations to the court to ask them to stop the lawsuit. Contact a legal aid lawyer to help you with the lawsuit. Please note: Your landlord can still evict you for reasons other than nonpayment of rent, like for engaging in criminal activity in the home, violating building codes or health ordinances, or threatening the health and safety of other residents.
- You will continue to owe your rent. Try to make a plan about how you will take care of all the rent you owe. At the end of the Eviction Moratorium protections on August 26, 2021, you will no longer be protected from being evicted.
- Make sure you know your lease and its terms. Some landlords may try to evict you based on violations of the terms in your lease. If you know your lease, you can protect yourself by making sure you do not break any of its terms.
If your landlord is trying to evict you, you should contact a legal aid attorney who helps with evictions. The CDC Eviction Moratorium might give you protections that lawyers can help you with.
What if I need repairs during COVID-19 in Nevada?
Can I break my lease during COVID-19 in Nevada?
What do I do if my landlord tries to evict me during COVID-19 in Nevada?
Are eviction cases still proceeding through Nevada court?
My landlord gave me an eviction notice
- My landlord gave me a notice to "pay or quit" my rental home in Nevada. What should I do?
You do not have to leave your home yet.
In Nevada, your landlord must serve you a notice that tells you to pay rent or vacate (quit) the rental unit. The notice must give you time to either pay your rent, move out of the unit, or prepare a Tenant’s Affidavit to file with the court to raise defenses against eviction.
This notice must follow some rules to be valid. Please be aware that the notice does not need to be filed in any court to be valid. If it doesn't follow these rules, then you can challenge it and stop an eviction.
These are the Nevada requirements for an eviction notice for non-payment of rent:
- The notice must be in writing.
- It must explain why you may be evicted - it has to say exactly how much rent you owe and the dates the overdue rent is for.
- The notice needs to say that you have seven days to move out, pay the rent, or how to contest the eviction in court.
- It has to include the name of the court where you can file a response to the notice.
- The notice has to explain that if the tenant is evicted, the court may issue a summary order evicting the tenant and the sheriff or constable will post the notice on the premises within 24 hours of the issuance of the order.
- The notice also has to advise the tenant the sheriff or constable may force the tenant to vacate no earlier than 24 hours but no later than 36 hours after the summary order is posted on the premises.
- The notice also has to say that you can file an expedited complaint with the court if your landlord locks you out of the property or shuts off your utilities.
Reach out for legal help if you think the notice isn't correct, or if you need assistance in defending yourself against the eviction.
- What if the landlord has just told me, face-to-face or over the phone, that I need to leave my home in Nevada?
A verbal conversation doesn't count as an "eviction notice". To be legal, the notice must be written down and given to you in the correct way.
Reach out for legal help if your landlord is trying to make you leave without going through the court process. This is illegal and a lawyer may be able to help you protect yourself.
- Do I have to leave my home in Nevada by the time of the eviction notice's expiration date?
No, you do not necessarily have to leave (or 'quit') your home by the date listed on the eviction notice. Remember, if you would like to contest the eviction you must file a Tenant’s Affidavit with the court in order to get a hearing.
You do not have to leave your home until a judge has ordered that your landlord can make you leave. If you did not contest the eviction notice, though, your landlord can ask the judge to sign the eviction order without any further notice to you. The Sheriff or Constable must serve the lockout order on you and may do this by giving it to you or posting it on your door. After you are served with the lockout order, you will have 24 hours to vacate your rental unit before the Sheriff or Constable returns to change your locks.
My eviction notice says that I will be evicted unless I pay back-rent I owe in Nevada. What if I can't afford to pay it?
How long do I have after I receive an eviction notice to pay back the rent to stop the eviction in Nevada?
I've been sued in court for eviction
- My landlord has filed an eviction lawsuit against me in court in Nevada. What should I do?
You should make sure that the landlord properly 'served' you with the lawsuit. If they didn't give it to you in the correct way, you can challenge the eviction lawsuit. In Nevada, a landlord must follow certain rules to let you know about the lawsuit:
- Only certain people can give you the lawsuit's Summons and Complaint. The landlord can not give you these papers - it has to be a person not involved in the case. This can be the sheriff, a deputy, or any person competent over 18.
- These papers must be personally served to you - meaning that you must be handed a copy of your summons and complaint. The only exception is that the papers can be left at your home with an adult (age fourteen or older).
- The papers must be given to a person and cannot be left in the doorway.
You should also reach out to local lawyers who can help you prepare for your court hearing so you can protect yourself against the eviction.
- Do I have to do anything after I get an eviction Summons and Complaint in Nevada?
In Nevada, you are required to respond to the eviction lawsuit, if you want to avoid the eviction.
You will have 20 days after you receive the Summons and Complaint to get a written response back to the court unless the landlord asks for a shorter time for the tenant to answer. This time cannot be shortened to less than 10 days. If you do not submit this response by the 20th day, you may lose your case and the judge may give the landlord permission to remove you from your home.
Usually your landlord will also try to set an expedited hearing to remove you from the rental unit while awaiting trial. This hearing should not be set less than 11 days after you were served with the summons and complaint. You do not need to file anything with the court prior to the hearing but you must show up at the hearing if you want to stop the eviction.
Reach out to legal help to learn what your rights and defenses are in your eviction case. These organizations can help you deal with this lawsuit.
- Can I settle my eviction case without going to court in Nevada?
You can come to an agreement, but you should still go to court to make sure your case is closed.
You can work with your landlord to work out an agreement before the date of the court hearing. This might be a payment plan or other agreement on what needs to happen for you to stay in your home.
Be sure to get this agreement in writing, so that you can prove it exists and that your landlord follows through on it.
Also, you should still go to court for your hearing date, to make sure the court knows about the agreement and closes the lawsuit. If you do not go to court, the lawsuit might still continue and the judge might rule that the landlord can remove you. Go to court yourself to make sure this doesn't happen.
You can reach out for legal help to get assistance in negotiating an agreement with your landlord, and making sure this agreement is being followed.
How can I get rent help?
- Who can help me with rent that I owe?
If you are behind on rent, you can get help from your local Rental Assistance program. This is a government service to help people who owe rent or utility bills.
Especially if you are behind on rent because of COVID-19 hardships, your local Rental Assistance (or Rent Relief) program can help you.
Find your local Rental Assistance program at your Get Help page here.
- Am I eligible for rent relief?
Local governments set the rules about who is eligible for rent relief. Most programs focus on people who have suffered COVID-19 hardships.
You can talk to your local Rental Assistance program to learn their eligibility rules.
You may have to show your household income, or if you are on other benefits programs like SNAP.
You may also have to show that you are at risk of homelessness or eviction if you don't get rental assistance.
- Does immigration status matter for rent relief?
Many local Rental Assistance programs are open to everyone, regardless of immigration status. Many programs do not even ask about immigration status.
Check with your local Rental Assistance program to make sure about eligibility rules and immigration.
Did I have eviction protections under the CARES Act?
Can a landlord apply for their renter, to get rental assistance?
Its information is taken from these sources:Princeton Eviction Lab's COVID Policy ScorecardsColumbia Law School COVID-19 Eviction Moratoria analysisEnergy and Policy Institute Utility Disconnect TrackerGovernor emergency directiveExecutive order updatesLegal aid know your rights informationDeclaration of Emergency Directive 043