With COVID creating chaos in how people earn their money, many states have allowed rents to be frozen or extended with conditions such as proving COVID has caused a hardship. However, those moratoriums will end eventually, and evictions will inevitably start if they have not kept up the rent.
In this process of paying rent and facing evictions, renters have certain rights. Among them are:
- You can talk with your landlord, with your attorney’s counsel about extending your lease. Be careful that deferring these payments just means that you’re going to be paying that money later.
- You have a right to not be discriminated. If your landlord owns other properties, they should not have to target you first over being in a class that is considered discrimination, such as race, sexual identity and disabilities.
- You also have a right to discuss how your lease ends. With COVID currently stopping evictions, using this time to negotiate your rent or getting out of it is smart move.
- If all else fails, you have a right to know when your being terminated. California’s moratorium for example allows for a 25% rent payment through January. But once that goes away, landlords not only can start the eviction process, but can sue for back rent beginning in March. 
With the virus still hurting many people, being able to keep your business in its current location despite it being vacant is valuable. Work with your attorney and your landlord to determine how your rent should be handled in your state.