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Merf Ehman Columbia Legal Services. It’s Complicated but Great Work! Usually you can find a basis to argue Good cause even outside Seattle The subsidy.

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Presentation on theme: "Merf Ehman Columbia Legal Services. It’s Complicated but Great Work! Usually you can find a basis to argue Good cause even outside Seattle The subsidy."— Presentation transcript:

1 Merf Ehman Columbia Legal Services

2 It’s Complicated but Great Work! Usually you can find a basis to argue Good cause even outside Seattle The subsidy is incredibly meaningful to the client

3 Overview Programs created by federal legislation Different rights flow from different subsidies Find out the type of subsidy your client receives

4 What type of Subsidy? Public Housing Section 8 Multifamily programs Low Income Housing Tax Credits

5 Affordable Housing Eligibility 2011 Family size 30 percent income limit 50 percent income limit 80 percent income limit 1$18,500$30,800$45,500 2$21,150$35,200$52,000 3$23,800$39,600$58,500 4$26,400$44,000$65,000 5$28,550$47,550$70,200 6$30,650$51,050$75,400

6 Finding the subsidy Ask client Review lease Ask housing provider/attorney Look online

7 Search the Web Low Income Tax Credit Multifamily housing m_offices/housing/mfh m_offices/housing/mfh orhousing.aspx orhousing.aspx

8 Overview How the program works Key Regulatory Features

9 CONVENTIONAL PUBLIC HOUSING OWNED AND MANAGED BY PUBLIC HOUSING AUTHORITY (PHA) Seattle Housing Authority King County Housing Authority Renton Housing Authority

10 Subsidy Mechanism HUD provides annual operating subsidies PHA anticipates amount of tenant rents then subtracts amount from allowable expenses to determine federal operating subsidy Tenant pays 30 percent of monthly income for rent and utilities

11 Sources of Law Statute 42 USC § 1437 Federal regulations (24 C.F.R. § 966) Residential Landlord Tenant Act Local Laws (Silva, 94 Wn. App. 731 (1999) HUD handbooks, circulars, notices (Public Housing Occupancy Guidebook) PHA admission and continued occupancy policies (ACOP) Tenant Lease

12 Eviction Process Notice Grievance Hearing Show Cause Hearing Trial

13 Reasons for Termination – 24 CFR 966.4(l) Serious or Repeated lease violations Includes nonpayment of rent Allegations must be prohibited by lease Failure to fulfill household obligations 24 CFR 966.4(f) Criminal Activity (PHA must prove all elements) Must be Illegal activity That threatens health, safety, peaceful enjoyment Criminal Defenses apply Illegal search Look out for hearsay/incompetent evidence Drug related criminal activity On or off premises Other good cause Alcohol abuse that impacts health and safety False statements that made client eligible Other

14 Notice Must state opportunity for hearing No preemption of state notice requirements Housing Authority v. Terry, 114 Wn.2d 558 (1990) Factual statement of basis for eviction Housing Authority v. Saylors, 19 Wn. App. 871 (1978) 14 day nonpayment notice ? 24 CFR 966.4(l)(3)(i)(A) “14 days in the case of failure to pay rent”

15 Grievance Hearing Due Process Requirements Defenses 4 th and 5 th amendments Same as at SCH PHA can’t use UDA show cause hearing if no grievance opportunity (PHA Circular HUD due process determination for WA) De novo hearing in UDA

16 Negotiations Look behind the notice Review hearing decision Practical/Creative Alternatives Transfer Voucher Accommodation Mitigation Services NO waiver of rights under RCW Exceptions under RCW Cannot appear in standard form lease No substantial inequality in the bargaining position of the two parties Not in violation of public policy Written approval of tenant’s attorney that exemption complies with above NO waiver of Seattle Just Cause No exceptions Deemed void and of no lawful force or effect

17 Show Cause Hearing Request discovery As soon as possible Defenses Mitigating circumstances DV 4 th and 5 th amendments State law innocent tenant defense Hearing Must prove factual allegations Show cause hearing should not be used to summarily resolve issues related to serious or repeated lease volitions, Pleasant, 126 Wn. App. 382 (2005) Helpful in negotiations Request trial right away For nonpayment of rent client can reinstate under RCW

18 Tenant based subsidy

19 Section 8 Voucher PUBLIC HOUSING AUTHORITY TENANT LANDLORD Dwelling Lease HAP Contract Voucher

20 Sources of law Federal regulations (24 C.F.R. § 982) Housing Choice Voucher Guidebook, G PHA Section 8 Admin Plan Lease

21 Rents 90% to 110% of the Fair Market Rents (FMR) May be increased as a reasonable accommodation Tenant Share of Rent is 30% of adjusted income

22 Eviction and Termination of Subsidy Separate processes Inform client of possible voucher termination related to UD

23 Termination by Owner During initial lease term: - Serious or repeated violation of lease, or federal, state or local law - Drug-related activity - Criminal activity that threatens other residents After initial lease term: - Without cause, except as required by lease or local law (Seattle Just Cause Eviction Ordinance SMC C)

24 Termination of Subsidy Violation of program obligations Drug-related or violent criminal activity Fraud or bribery Violation of payment agreements Threatening PHA personnel Eviction Move out w/out notice to PHA

25 Negotiations with Landlord Goal is to Preserve Voucher Mutual lease termination Avoid court finding of serious or repeated lease violation Avoid termination in initial 12 month period Avoid eviction Avoid debt to LL Avoid factual finding of violation Proof settlement terms met

26 Negotiations with PHA Inform them of eviction notice Options for preserving voucher PHA’s concerns Explain LL’s culpability (if any) Request reasonable accommodation (if applicable) DV Other mitigating circumstances Poor conditions – request inspections

27 Section 8 administrative termination hearing Right to hearing 24 C.F.R. § Must timely request Due process Mitigating circumstances C.F.R § (c)(2)(i) Disability24 C.F.R § (c)(2)(iv) Retaliation Warranty of habitability Compliance Other Refer for rep

28 Eviction Defenses at Show Cause hearing Good Cause in first year of lease Side agreements Illegal Late fees Should be based on tenant’s rent portion SHA stops paying due to poor conditions Not grounds for eviction Tenant must keep paying

29

30 Applicable Law Federal regulations (24 C.F.R. § 247) HUD Handbook Tenant Selection Plan

31 Grounds for Termination or Nonrenewal Material noncompliance with rental agreement Material violation of RLTA tenant duties Failure to supply information Nonpayment of rent or other charges Other good cause

32 Termination Notice State law notice periods, except “other good cause” requires at least 30 days State reasons with enough specificity so tenant can prepare defense Advise tenant of other rights (24 C.F.R. § 247.4)

33 Hearing Rights Notice must advise tenant that meeting with owner to discuss eviction can be requested in 10 days. Failure to give opportunity to confer or to confer in good faith may be defense to eviction Gorsuch Homes v. Wooten, 597 N.E.2d 554 (1992)

34 Washington State Housing Finance Commission

35 Low-Income Housing Tax Credits Country’s most extensive affordable housing program The program was added to Section 42 of the Internal Revenue Code in 1986 to provide private owners with an incentive to create and maintain affordable housing. Over 600 projects and 33,000 units in Washington State

36 Subsidy Mechanism Investors buy income tax credits in qualified properties that have received state allocation, creating cash equity for owners that reduces project development debt burden. In exchange, the owner agrees to rent a specific number of units to qualified tenants at specified rents, usually below- market. An owner may choose one of two occupancy restrictions: At least 20% of units occupied by households whose income is at or below 50% of AMI. At least 40% of units occupied by households whose income is at or below 60% of AMI.

37 Sources of Regulation Section 42 of the Internal Revenue Code Treasury regulations at 26 C.F.R. §1.42 State QAP and regulations State Regulatory Agreement with the owner Lease

38 Program Requirements “Good cause” required for termination or nonrenewal of tenancy Termination notice must state grounds with reasonable factual specificity

39 Good Cause Good Cause Definition: Serious or repeated violation of material terms of lease; Failure to vacate after premises made uninhabitable by fire, flood or other casualty

40 Questions?


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