Does Gov. Ducey’s eviction protection order apply to lease ends?

10 Replies

I have a tenant whose lease ended on July 31. They haven't been the best tenants and I would prefer not to renew their lease for another year. When I informed my property management company that I would like to give them notice of non-renewal, their legal counsel advised me that any notice to vacate is in violation of Gov. Ducey's eviction protection order. With the original protection order set to expire at the end of July, I figured I could wait a month until it expired and then give them notice. Now that the protection order has been extended to the end of October, I'd really like to turn the apartment over to new tenants if possible. Has anyone else received similar legal advice? Does the eviction protection order apply to ANY notice to vacate, even at the end of a lease?

Originally posted by @Lella Bennett :

I have a tenant whose lease ended on July 31. They haven’t been the best tenants and I would prefer not to renew their lease for another year. When I informed my property management company that I would like to give them notice of non-renewal, their legal counsel advised me that any notice to vacate is in violation of Gov. Ducey’s eviction protection order. With the original protection order set to expire at the end of July, I figured I could wait a month until it expired and then give them notice. Now that the protection order has been extended to the end of October, I’d really like to turn the apartment over to new tenants if possible. Has anyone else received similar legal advice? Does the eviction protection order apply to ANY notice to vacate, even at the end of a lease?

 I have properties in Maricopa county including Phoenix and Mesa. They way I read it, if the hardship was "Caused" by coronavius, (unemployment, illness, etc) then it applies. If the hardship is run of the mill, "I was stupid and lost my money on the black jack table at the casino" then it does not apply. Besides, in a situation like this it is better to ask forgiveness than to ask for permission. Remember, you have rights granted by the Bill of Rights (4th & 14th amendments) and sometimes you have to exercise those rights.

Amendment IV

The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated

Amendment XIV

Section 1.


No state shall make or enforce any law which shall abridge the
privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States; nor shall any
state deprive any person of
life, liberty, or property, without due
process of law


I think the tenant can simply say they “have/had the intent to renew or stay” but COVID caused their current  position. They could do this just to ride the wave and live for free. Unless you have previously (and can prove) that you have given them notice that they will not be allowed to renew their lease. That is no longer an eviction at that point, and is simply the end of a contract and was not related to COVID-19 which in my uneducated opinion wouldn’t be related to the governing coverages. Good luck! 🍀 

Well I think if you were gonna try to do it you needed to send them a notice of non-renewal 30 to 60 days ago. We have received the same legal advice to not pursue non-renewals at this time. 

Perhaps extend them on a short term lease until the end of October?

I think the only way that you could get them out is if they originally put in their notice to vacate and you re-rented the property.

Correct me if I'm wrong but don't tenants also need to provide documentation of hardship due to COVID? Does that aspect start later in August? Too many Ducey pressers can't remember what they said in all of them.

In OR, so I may not know garbage.

They'd probably say when lease ends it becomes MTM, but still a lease.

You can refuse payments, but eviction for non-payment probably not one of them since it's a lease still.

Just thinking what a judge would say since they side with tenants.

In OR, you can still evict, but need something other than non-payment.  Maybe a camera of them waving a gun in the building?

"They way I read it, if the hardship was "Caused" by coronavius, (unemployment, illness, etc) then it applies. If the hardship is run of the mill, "I was stupid and lost my money on the black jack table at the casino" then it does not apply"

Sorry, but tenants read the scroll on TV that says you can't be evicted for non-payment in OR.  Reason matters not, besides they'll make it up on the fly.

If you give notice of non-renewal and the tenant leaves, no eviction is required. If the tenant stays past the notice, you would still have to get a formal eviction order in order to have them physically removed from the property. The executive order prohibits enforcement of such an order IF the tenant can prove that he or she has been impacted (medically or financially) by COVID. So it might be possible to get the tenant out by simply giving notice of non-renewal, but if they refuse to leave and can document COVID hardship, you're SOL. In either event, I do not see where you can be penalized simply for giving notice of non-renewal. The executive order even allows you to get the formal eviction order, it just cannot be ENFORCED (ie, tenant removed by law enforcement) until the moratorium is lifted. Of course, the safer route for landlords is simply to keep tenants in place and not risk litigation at a time when everything is so unclear.

Now, the practical realities are a different matter. Are the courts hearing eviction cases on their reduced dockets? Probably not many. What are sheriff's offices doing with all these confusing housing orders right now? No idea. Will tenants scream about "their rights" without proving the COVID hardship that is required under the AZ moratorium? Absolutely. You will have to overcome these (and other) barriers to actually get a new tenant into the property. 

Your PM should know the rules, but they may want the path of least resistance. I'm not in the US, but we have eviction bans in place.  They are for non-payment of rent.  If tenants break the lease for other reasons, you can evict them.  If the lease is up, you are not evicting them, but not renewing the lease.  Let the tenants know their lease is up and with covid, you are fine extending it for another XX months, but after that you will not be renewing the lease and therefore understand if they want to give 30 days' notice.

Thank you all so much for the replies, your information is very helpful. The tenant has claimed that she tested positive for COVID-19, but I have no proof of that and no idea when she tested positive - could have been several months ago. As of right now, she's current on the rent payments, I just hope it will stay that way as that has been a problem in the past. I like the idea of doing a short extension on a month-to-month basis for another 2-3 months and then increasing the rent so she has some motivation to find alternative arrangements. Thanks again!