The recession caused by the Covid-19 pandemic has put many individuals and families into financial instability.  With new information every day, it is hard to know where you stand with bills that need to be paid and the prospect of financial relief.  As of April 1, 2020, here is where Arizonans stand in terms of financial protections and relief:

  1. Evictions.  Governor Ducey issued Executive Order 2020-14, which states that all evictions are stayed for 120 days (about July 20, 2020).  This does not mean that the rent won’t be due.  Instead, it will give tenants the opportunity to get caught up on rent over a period of time without worrying about the immediate threat of eviction.  To see the details of his order, go here:  https://azgovernor.gov/sites/default/files/eo_2020-14_0.pdf  The CARES Act, , passed by Congress on March 18, 2020, also prohibits evictions for 120 days if the dwelling is secured by a federal-backed mortgage loan or participates in a federal housing program.
  2. Foreclosures.  The CARES Act also provides that no servicer of a federally backed mortgage loan may initiate a foreclosure for 60 days (about May 17, 2020).  Furthermore, those same federally-backed mortgage loans may be eligible for forbearance on mortgage payments for up to 180 days.  Reach out to your mortgage lender for details on whether or not your loan qualifies and how to apply for forbearance relief.
  3. Utilities.  The City of Flagstaff has announced that it will not be shutting off water service to delinquent customers during the Covid-19 pandemic.  So although you’ll have to pay the bill eventually, you could make up the payment down the road if you can’t afford the bill right now.  See https://flagstaff.az.gov/3600/Paying-Your-Bill.  Similarly, APS has vowed to not shut off power during this time period and to waive late fees.  https://www.aps.com/en/Residential/Save-Money-and-Energy/Disconnections
  4. Stimulus Funds.  The CARES Act is also providing direct stimulus funds to individuals.  The federal government is promising a quick distribution of those funds.  For a calculator of what you might receive, go here:  https://www.forbes.com/advisor/personal-finance/stimulus-check-calculator/
  5. Unemployment.  Arizona and the federal government have expanded unemployment benefits temporarily.  If you are considering applying, this link has most answers that you’ll need:  https://des.az.gov/sites/default/files/media/Unemployment-Insurance-FAQ.pdf
  6. Bankruptcy.  Attorney Aubrey Thomas of the Flagstaff Law Group provides a free one-hour consultation to discuss your options and determine if bankruptcy is the right option for you to obtain a financial fresh start.  Call 928-233-6800 if you’re interested in scheduling an appointment.

*Disclaimer: The information contained in this article is for informational purposes only and is not legal advice. Legal advice should take into account the specific facts of your situation. You should seek professional legal counsel before acting upon any of the information contained in this article.