S50001 Summary:

BILL NOS50001
 
SAME ASSAME AS A40001
 
SPONSORKAVANAGH
 
COSPNSR
 
MLTSPNSR
 
Amd Part BB Subpart A 3, 6, 8, 9 & 11, add 9-a, Chap 56 of 2021; amd 1 & 2, Chap 127 of 2020
 
Relates to commercial eviction and foreclosure protections, residential eviction and foreclosure protections and open meetings; establishes a COVID-19 emergency rental assistance program (Part A); relates to commercial eviction proceedings (Subpart A); relates to commercial foreclosure proceedings (Subpart B); relates to tax sales (Subpart C); establishes hardship declarations for owners of commercial real property (Subpart D)(Part B); relates to residential eviction proceedings (Subpart A); relates to residential foreclosure proceedings (Subpart B); relates to tax sales (Subpart C); establishes hardship declarations for owners of residential real property (Subpart D)(Part C); extends the prohibition on the eviction of residential tenants who have suffered financial hardship during the COVID-19 covered period through January 15, 2022, and relates to factors to be considered by the court in determining whether a residential tenant or lawful occupant of rental property suffered a financial hardship during the COVID-19 covered period (Part D); authorizes political subdivisions to permit any public body to hold meetings remotely and without in-person access during the COVID-19 state disaster emergency (Part E).
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S50001 Actions:

BILL NOS50001
 
09/01/2021REFERRED TO RULES
09/01/2021ORDERED TO THIRD READING CAL.1
09/01/2021MESSAGE OF NECESSITY - 3 DAY MESSAGE
09/01/2021PASSED SENATE
09/01/2021DELIVERED TO ASSEMBLY
09/01/2021referred to ways and means
09/01/2021substituted for a40001
09/01/2021ordered to third reading rules cal.1
09/01/2021message of necessity - 3 day message
09/01/2021passed assembly
09/01/2021returned to senate
09/02/2021DELIVERED TO GOVERNOR
09/02/2021SIGNED CHAP.417
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S50001 Committee Votes:

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S50001 Floor Votes:

DATE:09/01/2021Assembly Vote  YEA/NAY: 81/60
AbbateYClarkYFrontusYLalorNOPaulinNOSillittiY
AbinantiNOColtonYGalefNOLavineYPeoples-StokesYSimonY
AndersonYConradNOGallagherYLawlerNOPerryYSimpsonNO
AngelinoNOCookYGallahanNOLemondesNOPheffer AmatoYSmithNO
AshbyNOCruzYGandolfoNOLunsfordNOPichardoYSmullenNO
AubryYCusickNOGiglio JANOLupardoYPretlowYSolagesY
BarclayNOCymbrowitzYGiglio JMNOMagnarelliNOQuartYSteckY
BarnwellYDarlingYGlickYMamdaniYRaNOSternNO
BarrettNODavilaYGonzalez-RojasYManktelowNORajkumarYStirpeY
BarronERDe La RosaYGoodellNOMcDonaldYRamosERTagueNO
BenedettoYDeStefanoNOGottfriedYMcDonoughERReillyNOTannousisNO
BichotteYDickensYGriffinNOMcMahonNOReyesYTaylorY
BlankenbushNODilanYGuntherNOMeeksYRichardsonYThieleY
BrabenecNODinowitzYHawleyNOMikulinNORivera J YVanelY
BraunsteinYDiPietroNOHevesiYMiller B NORivera JDYWalczykNO
BronsonYDursoNOHunterYMiller MLERRodriguezYWalkerY
BrownNOEichensteinNOHyndmanYMitaynesYRosenthal D YWallaceNO
BurdickYEnglebrightYJacksonYMontesanoNORosenthal L YWalshNO
BurgosYEpsteinYJacobsonNOMorinelloNORozicYWeinsteinY
BurkeNOFahyYJean-PierreNONiouYSalkaNOWeprinY
ButtenschonNOFallYJensenNONolanERSantabarbaraERWilliamsNO
ByrneNOFernandezYJonesNONorrisNOSayeghYWoernerNO
ByrnesERFitzpatrickNOJoynerYO'DonnellYSchmittNOZebrowskiY
CahillYForrestYKellesYOtisYSeawrightYZinermanY
CarrollERFriendERKimYPalmesanoNOSeptimoYMr. SpeakerY

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S50001 Memo:

Memo not available
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S50001 Text:



 
                STATE OF NEW YORK
        ________________________________________________________________________
 
                                            1
 
                                  Extraordinary Session
 
                    IN SENATE
 
                                    September 1, 2021
                                       ___________
 
        Introduced  by  Sen.  KAVANAGH  --  (at request of the Governor) -- read
          twice and ordered printed, and when printed to  be  committed  to  the
          Committee on Rules
 
        AN  ACT to amend subpart A of part BB of chapter 56 of the laws of 2021,
          establishing  a  COVID-19  emergency  rental  assistance  program,  in
          relation  to  eligibility for the COVID-19 emergency rental assistance
          program (Part A); in relation to eviction proceedings;  and  providing
          for  the  repeal  of  certain  provisions  upon the expiration thereof
          (Subpart A); and in relation to foreclosure proceedings; and providing
          for the repeal of  certain  provisions  upon  the  expiration  thereof
          (Subpart B); in relation to tax sales; and providing for the repeal of
          certain  provisions upon the expiration thereof (Subpart C); to estab-
          lish hardship declarations for owners of commercial real property; and
          providing for the repeal of such provisions upon the expiration there-
          of (Subpart D) (Part B); in relation to eviction proceedings;  and  to
          provide  for  the expiration of certain provisions upon the expiration
          thereof (Subpart A);  in  relation  to  foreclosure  proceedings;  and
          providing for the expiration of certain provisions upon the expiration
          thereof  (Subpart  B); in relation to tax sales; and providing for the
          expiration of certain provisions upon the expiration thereof  (Subpart
          C);  and  to establish hardship declarations for owners of residential
          real property; and providing for the  expiration  of  such  provisions
          upon  the  expiration  thereof  (Subpart  D)  (Part C); in relation to
          extending the prohibition on the eviction of residential  tenants  who
          have  suffered  financial  hardship during the COVID-19 covered period
          (Part D); and in relation to  authorizing  political  subdivisions  to
          permit any public body to hold meetings remotely and without in-person
          access  during the COVID-19 state disaster emergency; and provides for
          the repeal of such provisions upon the expiration thereof (Part E)

          The People of the State of New York, represented in Senate and  Assem-
        bly, do enact as follows:
 
         EXPLANATION--Matter in italics (underscored) is new; matter in brackets
                              [ ] is old law to be omitted.
                                                                   LBD12031-01-1

        S. 1                                2
 
     1    Section 1. This act enacts into law components of legislation relating
     2  to commercial eviction and foreclosure protections, residential eviction
     3  and  foreclosure protections and open meetings. Each component is wholly
     4  contained within a Part identified as Parts A through E.  The  effective
     5  date  for  each  particular  provision contained within such Part is set
     6  forth in the last section of such Part. Any  provision  in  any  section
     7  contained within a Part, including the effective date of the Part, which
     8  makes reference to a section "of this act", when used in connection with
     9  that  particular  component,  shall  be  deemed to mean and refer to the
    10  corresponding section of the Part in which it is found. Section four  of
    11  this act sets forth the general effective date of this act.
    12    § 2. Legislative intent. The legislature finds and declares all of the
    13  following:
    14    More  than  two million New Yorkers have been infected by the COVID-19
    15  coronavirus, and the disease has killed more  than  55,000  New  Yorkers
    16  since  March  2020.  Measures  necessary  to  contain  the pandemic have
    17  brought about widespread economic and societal disruption.  Millions  of
    18  residents  have  experienced  financial  hardship  due to such measures,
    19  which closed businesses and  schools,  and  resulted  in  income  losses
    20  across the state.
    21    The  state  has  enacted a series of statutes that the legislature has
    22  found necessary to  protect  the  public  health,  safety,  and  general
    23  welfare  of  the  people  of New York. These measures include the Tenant
    24  Safe Harbor Act ("TSHA"), the COVID-19 Emergency Eviction  and  Foreclo-
    25  sure Prevention Act ("CEEFPA"), and COVID-19 Emergency Protect Our Small
    26  Businesses Act ("CEPOSBA").
    27    Even  as  New  York  enters a phase of economic recovery, the need for
    28  continued statutory protections and other emergency public health  meas-
    29  ures  is demonstrated by rates of transmission in the state. Since early
    30  July, cases have risen ten-fold, and 95 percent of the sequenced  recent
    31  positives in New York State were the Delta variant.
    32    The  evidence  that  residential  eviction  protections  are effective
    33  public health measures is especially  strong.  The  CDC  has  repeatedly
    34  found  this  to be so and has urged states to enact and keep residential
    35  eviction moratoriums in place. A recent  peer-reviewed  study  of  state
    36  eviction  moratoriums  found  that  "COVID-19  incidence  and  mortality
    37  increased steadily in states after  eviction  moratoriums  expired,  and
    38  were  associated with doubling of COVID-19 incidence ... and a five-fold
    39  increase in COVID-19 mortality ... 16 weeks after moratoriums lapsed."
    40    In April 2021, the legislature passed the  COVID-19  Emergency  Rental
    41  Assistance  Program  ("CERAP"), funded with $2.6 billion for residential
    42  rent and utility assistance. To date, technical and administrative chal-
    43  lenges, low public awareness of the program, and the slow pace of imple-
    44  mentation have hampered the program's effectiveness in covering the cost
    45  of rent arrears and providing widespread eviction protections.
    46    On August 12, 2021, in the case Chrysafis v. Marks, the  U.S.  Supreme
    47  Court  enjoined the enforcement of CEEFPA's residential eviction morato-
    48  rium, finding that provisions that provided for a tenant to self-certify
    49  financial hardship and delayed a landlord from  contesting  the  certif-
    50  ication violated constitutional rights to due process.
    51    Stabilizing housing and small businesses continues to be to the mutual
    52  benefit  of  all  New  Yorkers  in  that these steps will help the state
    53  address the COVID-19 pandemic, protect public health, and foster a  full
    54  and  equitable  recovery. The legislature is especially cognizant of the
    55  ongoing risks posed by residential evictions stemming  from  non-payment
    56  of rent during the height of the public health emergency, and its recov-

        S. 1                                3
 
     1  ery  period,  such  as  the  potential  to  exacerbate the resurgence of
     2  COVID-19, the damage significant numbers of evictions would cause to the
     3  state's economic recovery, and the deleterious social and public  health
     4  effects of homelessness and housing instability.
     5    For  all  of the foregoing reasons it is necessary to modify the resi-
     6  dential eviction moratorium to address the Supreme Court's  due  process
     7  concern,  and  to  extend  and strengthen the protections in the law. In
     8  addition, it is necessary to temporarily alter certain provisions of the
     9  open meetings law to ensure that certain public bodies can hold meetings
    10  and conduct business in a manner that balances public health and  safety
    11  precautions with the public's right to observe the proceedings.
 
    12                                   PART A

    13    Section 1. Subdivision 3 of section 3 of subpart A of part BB of chap-
    14  ter  56  of  the  laws of 2021, establishing a COVID-19 emergency rental
    15  assistance program, is amended to read as follows:
    16    3. a. The commissioner shall develop and promulgate a  form  outlining
    17  the  obligations  of  each municipal corporation that chooses to partic-
    18  ipate in the statewide program. Those municipal corporations who  choose
    19  to  participate  shall  remit  such  form to the office of temporary and
    20  disability assistance within 10 business days from the date of issuance.
    21  At such time that the municipal corporation has affirmed  their  partic-
    22  ipation,  upon  receipt of the completed form by the office of temporary
    23  and disability assistance and the director of the budget, and the feder-
    24  al department of the treasury, the  municipal  corporation  shall  remit
    25  their  allocation  of funds to the state in such manner as determined by
    26  the division of the budget. Provided, after the office has  acknowledged
    27  receipt  of the completed form, residents of such [municipality] munici-
    28  pal corporation shall be entitled to benefit from funds  made  available
    29  for this purpose, subject to the continued availability of funds.
    30    b.  Residents  of  a municipal corporation that chooses not to partic-
    31  ipate in the statewide program may submit an application to  the  state-
    32  wide  program  if the municipal corporation has distributed or obligated
    33  all of the municipal corporation's available  federal  emergency  rental
    34  assistance  funds  as  certified  by  the  chief elected official of the
    35  municipal corporation and the resident is  otherwise  eligible  for  the
    36  statewide  program.    Any  municipal  corporation  that  chooses not to
    37  participate in the statewide program  shall  notify  any  applicant  for
    38  federal  emergency  rental  assistance  funds  that is eligible for such
    39  assistance but is denied due to lack of funds that such applicant may be
    40  eligible to apply to the statewide program and shall provide such appli-
    41  cant with information on how to apply to the statewide program.  If  the
    42  chief  elected  official  of  a municipal corporation certifies that the
    43  municipal corporation has distributed or obligated all of the  municipal
    44  corporation's  available  federal emergency rental assistance funds, the
    45  municipal corporation shall provide information on its website informing
    46  residents that they may be eligible to apply to  the  statewide  program
    47  and  shall  provide  information  on its website on how to apply for the
    48  statewide program.
    49    § 2.  Subdivision 1 of section 6 of subpart A of part BB of chapter 56
    50  of the laws of 2021, establishing a COVID-19 emergency rental assistance
    51  program, is amended to read as follows:
    52    1. As soon as practicable, the commissioner shall make an  application
    53  for  the  program  available  on  the office of temporary and disability
    54  assistance's website. The  application  shall  be  available  online  in

        S. 1                                4
 
     1  English,  Spanish,  Chinese,  Russian,  Korean, Yiddish, Haitian (French
     2  Creole), Bengali, and, to the extent practicable,  other  commonly  used
     3  languages.  The  commissioner  shall enable application assistance to be
     4  offered  via  telephone to landlords and tenants and make accommodations
     5  for those who are hearing or  visually  impaired,  with  referral  to  a
     6  community based organization as deemed necessary.
     7    §  3. Paragraph (b) of subdivision 4 of section 6 of subpart A of part
     8  BB of chapter 56 of the laws of 2021, establishing a COVID-19  emergency
     9  rental assistance program, is amended to read as follows:
    10    (b)  Any documentation or information provided to the statewide appli-
    11  cation, eligibility worker, hotline or community based organization,  or
    12  obtained  in the course of administering the emergency rental assistance
    13  program or any other assistance program shall be kept  confidential  and
    14  shall only be used: (i) for the purposes of determining eligibility, for
    15  program  administration,  avoiding  duplication of assistance, and other
    16  uses consistent with State and federal law; and (ii)  by  the  New  York
    17  state  office of court administration so a court may determine whether a
    18  litigant in a proceeding has applied for or been granted assistance from
    19  the emergency rental assistance program for the purposes of ensuring the
    20  availability for the eviction protections provided by this part.
    21    § 4. Section 8 of subpart A of part BB of chapter 56 of  the  laws  of
    22  2021,  establishing  a  COVID-19 emergency rental assistance program, is
    23  amended to read as follows:
    24    § 8. Restrictions  on  eviction.  [Eviction]  Except  as  provided  in
    25  section  nine-a  of  this  act,  eviction  proceedings for a holdover or
    26  expired lease, or non-payment of rent or utilities that would be  eligi-
    27  ble  for  coverage  under  this program shall not be commenced against a
    28  household who has applied for this program or any local program adminis-
    29  tering federal emergency rental assistance program funds unless or until
    30  a determination of ineligibility is made. [If such eviction  proceedings
    31  are  commenced] Except as provided in section nine-a of this act, in any
    32  pending eviction proceeding, whether filed prior to, on,  or  after  the
    33  effective  date  of  this  act,  against  a household who has applied or
    34  subsequently applies for  benefits  under  this  program  or  any  local
    35  program  administering federal emergency rental assistance program funds
    36  to cover all or part of the  arrears  claimed  by  the  petitioner,  all
    37  proceedings  shall  be  stayed  pending  a determination of eligibility.
    38  Evidence of a payment received pursuant to this act or a  local  program
    39  administering  federal  emergency rental assistance program funds may be
    40  presented in such proceeding and create a presumption that the  tenant's
    41  or  occupant's rent or utility obligation for the time period covered by
    42  the payment has been fully satisfied.
    43    § 5. Paragraph (d) of subdivision 2 of section 9 of subpart A of  part
    44  BB  of chapter 56 of the laws of 2021, establishing a COVID-19 emergency
    45  rental assistance program, is amended to read as follows:
    46    (d) Acceptance of payment for rent or rental arrears from this program
    47  or any local program administering federal emergency  rental  assistance
    48  program  funds  shall  constitute agreement by the recipient landlord or
    49  property owner: (i) that the arrears covered by this payment are  satis-
    50  fied  and will not be used as the basis for a non-payment eviction; (ii)
    51  to waive any late fees due on any rental arrears paid pursuant  to  this
    52  program;  (iii)  to  not  increase the monthly rent due for the dwelling
    53  unit such that it shall not be greater than the amount that was  due  at
    54  the  time of application to the program for any and all months for which
    55  rental assistance is received and for one year after  the  first  rental
    56  assistance  payment is received; (iv) not to evict for reason of expired

        S. 1                                5

     1  lease or holdover tenancy any household on behalf of whom rental assist-
     2  ance is received for 12 months after the first rental assistance payment
     3  is received, unless the dwelling unit that is the subject of  the  lease
     4  or  rental  agreement  is located in a building that contains 4 or fewer
     5  units, in which case the landlord may decline to  extend  the  lease  or
     6  tenancy  if  the landlord intends to immediately occupy the unit for the
     7  landlord's personal use as a primary residence or the use of an  immedi-
     8  ate  family  member as a primary residence; and (v) to notify the tenant
     9  of the protections established under this subdivision.  Provided, howev-
    10  er, that provisions of this paragraph shall not apply to the extent that
    11  it conflicts with any legally binding agreement the  recipient  landlord
    12  or property owner entered into pursuant to a local program administering
    13  federal emergency rental assistance program funds prior to the effective
    14  date  of the chapter of the laws of two thousand twenty-one that amended
    15  this paragraph, or  where  the  recipient  landlord  or  property  owner
    16  accepted  payment from such local program prior to the effective date of
    17  the chapter of the laws of two thousand  twenty-one  that  amended  this
    18  paragraph.
    19    §  6.  Subpart  A of part BB of chapter 56 of the laws of 2021, estab-
    20  lishing a COVID-19 emergency rental assistance program,  is  amended  by
    21  adding a new section 9-a to read as follows:
    22    §  9-a.  Expired  lease or holdover tenant.  Section eight of this act
    23  shall not apply, and a landlord or property owner that has agreed not to
    24  evict a household for reason of expired lease or holdover tenancy pursu-
    25  ant to paragraph (d) of subdivision two of section nine of this act  may
    26  evict  such  household,  if  a  tenant  intentionally causes significant
    27  damage to the property or is persistently and unreasonably  engaging  in
    28  behavior  that substantially infringes on the use and enjoyment of other
    29  tenants or occupants or causes a substantial safety  hazard  to  others,
    30  provided:
    31    1.  If  an eviction proceeding is not pending on the effective date of
    32  this section, the petitioner shall file an affidavit  under  penalty  of
    33  perjury  with  the  petition attesting that the respondent intentionally
    34  caused significant damage to the property or is persistently and  unrea-
    35  sonably  engaging  in  such behavior, with a specific description of the
    36  behavior alleged.
    37    2. If an eviction proceeding is pending on the effective date of  this
    38  section,  but  the petitioner has not previously alleged that the tenant
    39  intentionally caused significant damage to the property or  persistently
    40  and  unreasonably  engaged  in  such  behavior,  the petitioner shall be
    41  required to submit a new petition with such allegations and comply  with
    42  all notice and service requirements under article 7 of the real property
    43  actions and proceedings law.
    44    3.  If  the court has awarded a judgment against a respondent prior to
    45  the effective date of this section on  the  basis  of  objectionable  or
    46  nuisance  behavior,  the court shall hold a hearing to determine whether
    47  the tenant is continuing to intentionally cause  significant  damage  to
    48  the  property  or  persist  in  engaging  in  unreasonable behavior that
    49  substantially infringes on the use and enjoyment  of  other  tenants  or
    50  occupants or causes a substantial safety hazard to others.
    51    4. For the purposes of this section, a mere allegation of the behavior
    52  by  the  petitioner or an agent of the petitioner alleging such behavior
    53  shall not be sufficient  evidence  to  establish  that  the  tenant  has
    54  engaged in such behavior.
    55    5.  If the petitioner fails to establish that the tenant intentionally
    56  caused significant damage to the property or persistently and  unreason-

        S. 1                                6
 
     1  ably  engaged  in  such  behavior: (i) if the household's application is
     2  still pending, the court shall stay or  continue  to  stay  any  further
     3  proceedings  pending  a determination of eligibility pursuant to section
     4  eight  of  this  act;  or  (ii)  if the landlord has accepted payment of
     5  rental arrears and agreed not to evict the tenant pursuant to  paragraph
     6  (d)  of  subdivision  two  of  section nine of this act, the court shall
     7  dismiss the proceeding with prejudice.
     8    6. If the petitioner establishes that the tenant intentionally  caused
     9  significant  damage  to  the  property  or persistently and unreasonably
    10  engaged in such behavior, the proceeding may continue pursuant to  arti-
    11  cle 7 of the real property actions and proceedings law.
    12    §  7.  Section 11 of subpart A of part BB of chapter 56 of the laws of
    13  2021, establishing a COVID-19 emergency rental  assistance  program,  is
    14  amended to read as follows:
    15    §  11.  Notice  to  tenants  in  eviction proceedings. In any eviction
    16  proceeding pending as of the effective date  of  this  article  and  any
    17  eviction  proceeding  filed  while  applications  are being accepted for
    18  assistance pursuant to this article  or  pursuant  to  a  local  program
    19  administering  federal  emergency rental assistance program funds in the
    20  jurisdiction of the court, the court shall promptly  make  available  to
    21  the  respondent  information  regarding how the respondent may apply for
    22  such assistance in English, and,  to  the  extent  practicable,  in  the
    23  respondent's primary language, if other than English.
    24    § 8. This act shall take effect immediately.
 
    25                                   PART B
 
    26    Section  1. This Part enacts into law components of legislation relat-
    27  ing to commercial eviction and foreclosure protections.  Each  component
    28  is wholly contained within a Subpart identified as Subparts A through D.
    29  The  effective  date for each particular provision contained within such
    30  Subpart is set forth in the last section of such Subpart. Any  provision
    31  in  any section contained within a Subpart, including the effective date
    32  of the Subpart, which makes reference to a section "of this  act",  when
    33  used  in  connection  with that particular component, shall be deemed to
    34  mean and refer to the corresponding section of the Subpart in  which  it
    35  is  found.  Section  three of this Part sets forth the general effective
    36  date of this Part.
 
    37                                  SUBPART A
 
    38    Section 1. Definitions. For the purposes of this act:    1.  "Eviction
    39  proceeding"  means  a  summary  proceeding to recover possession of real
    40  property  under  article  seven  of  the  real  property   actions   and
    41  proceedings  law  relating to a commercial unit or any other judicial or
    42  administrative proceeding to recover possession of real property  relat-
    43  ing to a commercial unit.
    44    2.  "Landlord" includes a landlord, owner of a commercial property and
    45  any other person with a  legal  right  to  pursue  eviction,  possessory
    46  action  or  a  money  judgment for rent, including arrears, owed or that
    47  becomes due during the COVID-19 covered period, as defined in section  1
    48  of chapter 127 of the laws of 2020.
    49    3.  "Tenant"  includes  a  commercial tenant that is a resident of the
    50  state, independently owned and operated, not dominant in its  field  and
    51  employs one hundred or fewer persons.

        S. 1                                7
 
     1    4. "Hardship declaration" means a. a hardship declaration filed pursu-
     2  ant to chapters 73, 104 or 154 of the laws of 2021, so long as the busi-
     3  ness  meets  the  definition  of  tenant  in  subdivision  three of this
     4  section, or b. the following statement, or  a  substantially  equivalent
     5  statement  in  the  language  in  which  the commercial lease or tenancy
     6  agreement was written or negotiated, in 14-point type, published by  the
     7  office  of court administration, whether in physical or electronic writ-
     8  ten form:
     9    "NOTICE TO COMMERCIAL TENANT:  If you have lost significant revenue or
    10  had significantly increased necessary costs during the COVID-19  pandem-
    11  ic,  and  you  sign  and  deliver this hardship declaration form to your
    12  landlord, you may be protected from eviction until at least January  15,
    13  2022  for nonpayment of rent or for holding over after the expiration of
    14  your lease.  If your landlord files an  eviction  against  you  and  you
    15  provide this form to the landlord or the court, the eviction proceedings
    16  will  be  postponed until January 15, 2022 unless your landlord moves to
    17  challenge your declaration of hardship. If the court finds your hardship
    18  claim valid, the eviction proceedings  will  be  postponed  until  after
    19  January  15, 2022. While the eviction proceedings are postponed, you may
    20  remain in possession of your unit.  You may still be evicted for violat-
    21  ing your lease by intentionally causing significant damage to the  prop-
    22  erty or persistently and unreasonably engaging in behavior that substan-
    23  tially  infringes on the use and enjoyment of other tenants or occupants
    24  or causes a substantial safety hazard to others.
    25    If your landlord has provided you with this form, your  landlord  must
    26  also  provide you with a mailing address and e-mail address to which you
    27  can return this form. If your landlord has already started  an  eviction
    28  proceeding  against  you,  you can return this form to either your land-
    29  lord, the court, or both at any time. You should keep a copy or  picture
    30  of  the signed form for your records. You will still owe any unpaid rent
    31  to your landlord.  To the extent you can pay less than the full rent, it
    32  is recommended you do so and keep careful track of what  you  have  paid
    33  and any amount you still owe.
 
    34           COMMERCIAL TENANT'S DECLARATION OF HARDSHIP DURING THE
    35                              COVID-19 PANDEMIC
 
    36  I  am  the owner, chief executive officer, president, or similar officer
    37  of (name of business), in which is a commercial tenant  at  (address  of
    38  commercial  unit).  My business is resident in New York state, independ-
    39  ently owned and operated, not dominant in its  field,  and  employs  one
    40  hundred  or  fewer  persons. My business is experiencing financial hard-
    41  ship, and is unable to pay the rent in full  or  other  financial  obli-
    42  gations  under  the  lease  in  full  or  obtain an alternative suitable
    43  commercial property because of one or more of the following:
    44    (i) Significant loss of revenue during the COVID-19 pandemic.
    45    (ii) Significant increase in necessary expenses related  to  providing
    46  personal  protective equipment to employees or purchasing and installing
    47  other protective equipment to prevent the transmission of COVID-19 with-
    48  in the business.
    49    (iii) Moving  expenses  and  difficulty  in  securing  an  alternative
    50  commercial  property  make it a hardship for the business to relocate to
    51  another location during the COVID-19 pandemic.
    52    To the extent the business has lost revenue or had increased expenses,
    53  any public assistance the business has received since the start  of  the
    54  COVID-19  pandemic  must  not  fully  make up for the business's loss of

        S. 1                                8
 
     1  revenue or increased expenses, and the business still meets  the  afore-
     2  mentioned eligibility criteria to qualify for a financial hardship.

     3  I  understand  that the business must comply with all other lawful terms
     4  under its commercial tenancy, lease agreement  or  similar  contract.  I
     5  further  understand  that  lawful  fees,  penalties  or interest for not
     6  having paid rent in full or met other financial obligations as  required
     7  by the commercial tenancy, lease agreement or similar contract may still
     8  be  charged  or  collected  and  may  result in a monetary judgment.   I
     9  further understand that the landlord may request a hearing to  challenge
    10  the  certification  of  hardship  made  herein, and that I will have the
    11  opportunity to participate in any proceedings regarding the tenancy.   I
    12  further  understand that the landlord may be able to seek eviction after
    13  January 15, 2022, and that the law may provide  certain  protections  at
    14  that  time  that are separate from those available through this declara-
    15  tion.  I understand that I may be eligible to receive financial  assist-
    16  ance from the State of New York under the Pandemic Small Business Recov-
    17  ery  Grant  Program  or  similar  relief  program,  and that I may visit
    18  https://esd.ny.gov/business-pandemic-recovery-initiative   to    receive
    19  additional information or call 877-721-0097 for assistance.
 
    20  Signed:
    21  Printed name:
    22  Date signed:
 
    23  NOTICE:  You  are signing and submitting this form under penalty of law.
    24  That means it is against the law to make a statement on this  form  that
    25  you know is false."
    26    5.  "Hardship"  means a business is unable to pay  the  rent  in  full
    27  or  other financial  obligations  under the lease in full or  obtain  an
    28  alternative  suitable  commercial property because of one or more of the
    29  following reasons and any public assistance the  business  has  received
    30  since  the start   of   the COVID-19  pandemic  has  not  fully  made up
    31  for the business's loss of revenue or increased expenses:
    32    a. Significant loss of revenue during the COVID-19 pandemic; or
    33    b. Significant increase in necessary  expenses  related  to  providing
    34  personal  protective equipment to employees or purchasing and installing
    35  other protective equipment to prevent the transmission of COVID-19 with-
    36  in the business; or
    37    c. Moving expenses and difficulty in securing an  alternative  commer-
    38  cial property make it a hardship for the business to relocate to another
    39  location during the COVID-19 pandemic.
    40    §  2.  No commercial tenant shall be removed from the possession prior
    41  to January 15, 2022, except by an eviction proceeding.
    42    § 3. Pre-eviction notices. A landlord shall include a "Hardship Decla-
    43  ration" with every written notice required by the  commercial  lease  or
    44  tenancy  agreement, law or rule to be provided prior to the commencement
    45  of an eviction proceeding, and with every notice of petition or  summons
    46  and  complaint  served  on  a tenant.   Such notice shall also include a
    47  mailing address, telephone number and active email  address  the  tenant
    48  can use to contact the landlord and return the hardship declaration.
    49    § 4. Required affidavit. 1. No court shall accept for filing any peti-
    50  tion or other filing to commence an eviction proceeding unless the peti-
    51  tioner  or plaintiff or an agent of the petitioner or plaintiff files an
    52  affidavit of service, under penalty of perjury, demonstrating the manner
    53  in which the petitioner or plaintiff or the petitioner's or  plaintiff's

        S. 1                                9

     1  agent  served  a  copy  of  the  hardship declaration in English and the
     2  language in which the commercial lease or tenancy agreement was  written
     3  or  negotiated,  if other than English, with any written notice required
     4  by the commercial lease or tenancy agreement, law or rule to be provided
     5  prior  to  the  commencement of an eviction proceeding, and an affidavit
     6  under penalty of perjury:
     7    a. attesting that, at the time of filing, neither  the  petitioner  or
     8  plaintiff  nor  any  agent of the petitioner or plaintiff has received a
     9  hardship declaration from the respondent, or
    10    b. attesting that the respondent or defendant has returned a  hardship
    11  declaration,  but  the  respondent or defendant is intentionally causing
    12  significant damage to the  property  or  persistently  and  unreasonably
    13  engaging  in behavior that substantially infringes on the use and enjoy-
    14  ment of other tenants or occupants or causes a substantial safety hazard
    15  to others, with a specific description of the behavior alleged, or
    16    c. attesting that the respondent or defendant has returned a  hardship
    17  declaration, but the petitioner or plaintiff believes in good faith that
    18  the hardship certified in the hardship declaration does not exist.
    19    2.  Upon  accepting  a  petition  or complaint, the attorney, judge or
    20  clerk of the court, as the case may be, shall determine whether  a  copy
    21  of  the  hardship  declaration  in English and the language in which the
    22  commercial lease or tenancy agreement  was  written  or  negotiated,  if
    23  other than English, and a copy of any affidavit filed pursuant to subdi-
    24  vision  1 of this section is annexed to the served notice of petition or
    25  summons and complaint and, if not, shall ensure that a copy of the hard-
    26  ship declaration and any such affidavit is attached to  such  notice  or
    27  summons.  If the petitioner submits an affidavit pursuant to paragraph c
    28  of  subdivision  1  of  this  section, the following notice, in at least
    29  fourteen-point type, shall also be annexed as a cover page to the notice
    30  of petition or summons:
    31    "NOTICE TO TENANT: THIS IS A PETITION TO COMMENCE AN EVICTION PROCEED-
    32  ING AGAINST YOU, BUT THE PROCEEDING WILL NOT  CONTINUE  UNTIL  AT  LEAST
    33  JANUARY  15, 2022, UNLESS YOUR LANDLORD MOVES TO CHALLENGE YOUR CLAIM OF
    34  AN EXEMPTION FROM EVICTION IN YOUR HARDSHIP DECLARATION FORM.
    35    IF YOUR LANDLORD MOVES TO CHALLENGE YOUR HARDSHIP CLAIM, YOU ARE ENTI-
    36  TLED TO A HEARING. IF THE COURT RULES YOUR HARDSHIP CLAIM INVALID  AFTER
    37  THE  HEARING,  THE  LAWSUIT  MAY  PROCEED  TOWARD POSSIBLE EVICTION, BUT
    38  UNLESS AND UNTIL THE COURT ISSUES AN EVICTION WARRANT AGAINST  YOU,  YOU
    39  ARE ENTITLED TO REMAIN IN POSSESSION OF YOUR UNIT."
    40    At  the  earliest possible opportunity, the court shall seek confirma-
    41  tion on the record or in writing from the respondent or  defendant  that
    42  the  respondent  or  defendant has received the hardship declaration and
    43  whether the respondent or defendant has submitted a hardship declaration
    44  to the petitioner or plaintiff, an agent of the petitioner or plaintiff,
    45  or the court. If the court determines a respondent or defendant has  not
    46  received  a hardship declaration, then the court shall stay the proceed-
    47  ing for a reasonable period of time, which shall be  no  less  than  ten
    48  business  days  or  any  longer  period provided by law, and provide the
    49  respondent or defendant with a  copy  of  the  hardship  declaration  in
    50  English  and,  to  the  extent  practicable,  the  language in which the
    51  commercial lease or tenancy agreement  was  written  or  negotiated,  if
    52  other  than  English, to ensure the respondent or defendant received and
    53  fully considered whether to submit the hardship declaration.
    54    § 5. Pending proceedings. In  any  eviction  proceeding  in  which  an
    55  eviction  warrant  or  judgment  of possession or ejectment has not been
    56  issued, including eviction proceedings filed on or before March 7, 2020,

        S. 1                               10
 
     1  if the tenant provides a  hardship  declaration  to  the  petitioner  or
     2  plaintiff,  the court, or an agent of the petitioner or plaintiff or the
     3  court, the eviction proceeding shall be stayed until  at  least  January
     4  15,  2022. If such hardship declaration is provided to the petitioner or
     5  plaintiff or agent, such petitioner or plaintiff or agent shall promptly
     6  file it with the court, advising the court in writing the  index  number
     7  of all relevant cases.
     8    §  6.  Post  warrant  of eviction. 1. a. In any eviction proceeding in
     9  which an eviction warrant or judgment of  possession  or  ejectment  has
    10  been  issued  prior  to  the effective date of this act, but has not yet
    11  been executed as of the effective date of this act,  including  eviction
    12  proceedings  filed  on or before March 7, 2020, the court shall stay the
    13  execution of the warrant or judgment at least until the court has held a
    14  status conference with the parties. b. In any  eviction  proceeding,  if
    15  the  tenant  provides a hardship declaration to the petitioner or plain-
    16  tiff, the court, or an agent of  the  petitioner  or  plaintiff  or  the
    17  court,  prior to the execution of the warrant or judgment, the execution
    18  shall be stayed until at least January 15, 2022. If such hardship decla-
    19  ration is provided to the petitioner or plaintiff or agent of the  peti-
    20  tioner or plaintiff, such petitioner or plaintiff or agent shall prompt-
    21  ly  file  it  with  the  court,  advising the court in writing the index
    22  number of all relevant cases.
    23    2. In any eviction proceeding in which a warrant or execution has been
    24  issued, including eviction proceedings filed on or before March 7, 2020,
    25  any warrant or execution issued shall not be effective  as  against  the
    26  occupants,  unless,  in  addition  to other requirements under law, such
    27  warrant or execution states:
    28    a. The tenant has not  submitted  the  hardship  declaration  and  the
    29  tenant  was  properly  served  with  a  copy of the hardship declaration
    30  pursuant to this section, listing dates the tenant was served  with  the
    31  hardship declaration by the petitioner or plaintiff and the court; or
    32    b.  The  tenant  is  ineligible  for a stay under this act because the
    33  court has found the tenant's hardship claim invalid, or that the  tenant
    34  intentionally  caused  significant damage to the property, or the tenant
    35  is persistently and unreasonably engaging in behavior that substantially
    36  infringes on the use and enjoyment of  other  tenants  or  occupants  or
    37  causes   a   substantial  safety  hazard  to  others,  with  a  specific
    38  description of the behavior.
    39    3. No court shall issue a warrant or execution directed to the sheriff
    40  of the county or to any constable or marshal of the city  in  which  the
    41  property,  or  a portion thereof, is situated, or, if it is not situated
    42  in a city, to any constable of any town in the  county,  that  does  not
    43  comply with the requirements of this section.
    44    4.  No  officer  to  whom  the  warrant or execution is directed shall
    45  execute a warrant for eviction issued that  does  not  comply  with  the
    46  requirements of this section.
    47    5.  Unless the warrant or execution contains the information contained
    48  in paragraph b of subdivision 2 of this section, if any tenant  delivers
    49  the hardship declaration to the officer to whom the warrant or execution
    50  is  directed, the officer shall not execute the warrant or execution and
    51  shall return the hardship form to the court indicating  the  appropriate
    52  index/case number the form is associated with.
    53    §  7.  Section five and paragraph b of subdivision 1 of section six of
    54  this act shall not apply if the tenant: 1. intentionally caused  signif-
    55  icant damage to the property; or

        S. 1                               11

     1    2. is persistently and unreasonably engaging in behavior that substan-
     2  tially  infringes on the use and enjoyment of other tenants or occupants
     3  or causes a substantial safety hazard to others, provided:
     4    a.  If an eviction proceeding is pending on the effective date of this
     5  act, but the petitioner or plaintiff has not previously alleged that the
     6  tenant intentionally caused a significant  damage  to  the  property  or
     7  persistently  and  unreasonably engaged in such behavior, the petitioner
     8  or plaintiff shall be required to submit a new petition  or  an  amended
     9  complaint  with  such allegations and comply with all notice and service
    10  requirements under law.
    11    b. (i) If the court has awarded a judgment  against  a  respondent  or
    12  defendant prior to the effective date of this act on the basis of objec-
    13  tionable  or nuisance behavior and the petitioner or plaintiff is alleg-
    14  ing the tenant caused significant damage  to  the  property,  the  court
    15  shall  hold  a  hearing to determine whether the tenant is continuing to
    16  intentionally cause significant damage to the property.
    17    (ii) If the court has awarded  a  judgment  against  a  respondent  or
    18  defendant  prior to the effective date of chapter 73 of the laws of 2021
    19  on the basis of objectionable or nuisance behavior and the petitioner or
    20  plaintiff is alleging the tenant is persistently engaging  in  unreason-
    21  able  behavior  that substantially infringes on the use and enjoyment of
    22  other tenants or occupants or causes  a  substantial  safety  hazard  to
    23  others,  the  court shall hold a hearing to determine whether the tenant
    24  is continuing to persist  in  engaging  in  unreasonable  behavior  that
    25  substantially  infringes  on  the  use and enjoyment of other tenants or
    26  occupants or causes a substantial safety hazard to others.
    27    c. For the purposes of this act, a mere  allegation of the behavior by
    28  the petitioner or plaintiff or an agent of the petitioner  or  plaintiff
    29  alleging  such  behavior  shall  not be sufficient evidence to establish
    30  that the tenant has engaged in such behavior.
    31    d. If the petitioner or plaintiff establishes that the  tenant  inten-
    32  tionally  caused  significant  damage  to the property, persistently and
    33  unreasonably engaged in such behavior, or the tenant fails to provide  a
    34  hardship  declaration  to  the  petitioner or plaintiff, petitioner's or
    35  plaintiff's agent or the court, the proceeding may continue pursuant  to
    36  law.
    37    § 8. Translation of hardship declaration. The office of court adminis-
    38  tration  shall translate the hardship declaration, as defined in section
    39  one of this act, into Spanish and, to the extent  practicable,  the  six
    40  most  common languages in the city of New York, after Spanish, and shall
    41  post and maintain such translations and an English language copy of  the
    42  hardship  declaration  on  the  website  of such office beginning within
    43  fifteen days of the effective date of this act.  To the extent practica-
    44  ble, the office of court administration shall post and maintain  on  its
    45  website  translations into such additional languages as the chief admin-
    46  istrative judge shall deem appropriate to ensure that  tenants  have  an
    47  opportunity  to  understand and submit hardship declarations pursuant to
    48  this act.
    49    § 9. Rebuttable presumption.   Unless a court  determines  a  tenant's
    50  hardship  claim  invalid pursuant to section ten of this act, a hardship
    51  declaration shall create a rebuttable presumption  that  the  tenant  is
    52  experiencing  financial  hardship,  in  any  judicial  or administrative
    53  proceeding that may be brought,  for  the  purposes  of  establishing  a
    54  defense  under  an executive order of the governor or any other local or
    55  state law, order or regulation restricting  the  eviction  of  a  tenant
    56  suffering  from  a financial hardship during or due to COVID-19 provided

        S. 1                               12
 
     1  that the absence of a hardship declaration shall not create  a  presump-
     2  tion that a financial hardship is not present.
     3    §  10.    1.  Notwithstanding  any other provision of this act, a stay
     4  under this part shall be granted or continued unless the court finds the
     5  respondent's or defendant's hardship claim invalid.   A  motion  may  be
     6  made  by the petitioner or plaintiff, attesting a good faith belief that
     7  the respondent or defendant has not experienced a hardship, with  notice
     8  to  the  respondent or defendant, and the court shall grant a hearing to
     9  determine whether to find the respondent's or defendant's hardship claim
    10  invalid.
    11    2.  After any hearing, if the court  finds  the  respondent's  or  the
    12  defendant's  hardship  claim  valid,  the  court  shall  grant a stay or
    13  continue a stay pursuant to this act.
    14    3. After a hearing, if the court finds the respondent's or the defend-
    15  ant's hardship claim invalid, the proceedings shall continue to a deter-
    16  mination on the merits.
    17    § 11. This act shall take effect immediately and  sections  one,  two,
    18  three,  four,  five,  six, seven, eight and ten of this act shall expire
    19  and be deemed repealed January 15, 2022.
 
    20                                  SUBPART B

    21    Section 1. Application. This section shall  apply  to  any  action  to
    22  foreclose  a mortgage relating to commercial real property, provided the
    23  owner or mortgagor of such property owns ten or fewer  commercial  units
    24  whether directly or indirectly and is a business that is resident in New
    25  York State, independently owned and operated, not dominant in its field,
    26  and  employs  one  hundred or fewer persons. The ten or fewer commercial
    27  units may be in more than one property or building as long as the  total
    28  aggregate  number of ten units are currently occupied by a tenant or are
    29  available for rent.
    30    Notwithstanding anything to the contrary, this act shall not apply to,
    31  and does not affect any mortgage loans made, insured, purchased or secu-
    32  ritized by a corporate governmental agency of the state constituted as a
    33  political subdivision and public benefit corporation, or the rights  and
    34  obligations  of  any  lender,  issuer, servicer or trustee of such obli-
    35  gations.
    36    § 2. Definitions. 1. For the purposes of this act, "Hardship  Declara-
    37  tion" means a. a hardship declaration filed pursuant to chapters 73, 104
    38  or  154  of the laws of 2021, or b.  the following statement in 14-point
    39  type, published by the office of court administration, whether in  phys-
    40  ical or electronic written form:
    41    "NOTICE  TO COMMERCIAL MORTGAGOR: If you have lost significant revenue
    42  or had significantly  increased  necessary  costs  during  the  COVID-19
    43  pandemic,  and  you  sign  and deliver this hardship declaration form to
    44  your mortgage lender or other foreclosing party, you  may  be  protected
    45  from  foreclosure  until  at  least  January  15, 2022. If a foreclosure
    46  action is filed against you and you provide this form to  the  plaintiff
    47  or the court, the action will be postponed until January 15, 2022 unless
    48  the  plaintiff  moves  to challenge your declaration of hardship. If the
    49  court finds your hardship claim valid, the foreclosure  action  will  be
    50  postponed  until  after January 15, 2022. While the action is postponed,
    51  you may remain in possession.
    52    If your mortgage lender or other foreclosing party provided  you  with
    53  this  form,  the  mortgage  lender  or other foreclosing party must also
    54  provide you with a mailing address and e-mail address to which  you  can

        S. 1                               13
 
     1  return this form. If you are already in foreclosure proceedings, you may
     2  return  this form to the court. You should keep a copy or picture of the
     3  signed form for your records. You will still  owe  any  unpaid  mortgage
     4  payments  and  lawful  fees to your lender. You should also keep careful
     5  track of what you have paid and any amount you still owe.
     6        COMMERCIAL MORTGAGOR'S DECLARATION OF COVID-19-RELATED HARDSHIP
     7    I am the owner, chief executive officer, president, or similar officer
     8  of (name of the business), which is the mortgagor  of  the  property  at
     9  (address  of  commercial  unit).   My business owns, whether directly or
    10  indirectly, ten or fewer commercial units.  My business is  resident  in
    11  New  York  State,  independently owned and operated, not dominant in its
    12  field, and employs one hundred or fewer persons. My business is  experi-
    13  encing  financial  hardship  and  is  unable to pay the mortgage in full
    14  because of one or more of the following:
    15    (i) Significant loss of revenue during the COVID-19 pandemic.
    16    (ii) Significant increase in necessary expenses related  to  providing
    17  personal  protective equipment to employees or purchasing and installing
    18  other protective equipment to prevent the transmission of COVID-19 with-
    19  in the business.
    20    (iii) Moving  expenses  and  difficulty  in  securing  an  alternative
    21  commercial  property  make it a hardship for the business to relocate to
    22  another property during the COVID-19 pandemic.
    23    (iv) One or more of the business's tenants has defaulted on a  signif-
    24  icant amount of their rent payments since March 1, 2020.
    25    To  the  extent  that  the  business has lost revenue or had increased
    26  expenses, any public assistance the  business  has  received  since  the
    27  start of the COVID-19 pandemic does not fully make up for the business's
    28  loss of revenue or increased expenses.
    29    I understand that the business must comply with all other lawful terms
    30  under my commercial mortgage agreement. I further understand that lawful
    31  fees,  penalties or interest for not having paid the mortgage in full as
    32  required by the commercial mortgage agreement may still  be  charged  or
    33  collected  and  may result in a monetary judgment.  I further understand
    34  that the mortgage lender or other foreclosing party may request a  hear-
    35  ing  to  challenge the certification of hardship made herein, and that I
    36  will have the opportunity to participate in any actions  or  proceedings
    37  regarding  the  mortgage interest.   I also understand that the mortgage
    38  lender or other  foreclosing  party  may  pursue  a  foreclosure  action
    39  against  the  business  on  or after January 15, 2022, if I do not fully
    40  repay any missed or partial payments and lawful fees. I understand  that
    41  I  may be eligible to receive financial assistance from the State of New
    42  York under the Pandemic Small Business Recovery Grant Program or similar
    43  relief  program,  and  that  I  may  visit  https://esd.ny.gov/business-
    44  pandemic-recovery-initiative  to  receive additional information or call
    45  877-721-0097 for assistance.
    46  Signed:
    47  Printed Name:
    48  Date Signed:
    49  NOTICE: You are signing and submitting this form under penalty  of  law.
    50  That  means  it is against the law to make a statement on this form that
    51  you know is false."
    52    2. "Hardship" means a business is unable to pay the mortgage  in  full
    53  because of one or more of the following reasons and any  public  assist-
    54  ance  the  business has received since the start of the COVID-19 pandem-
    55  ic  does  not  fully  make  up  for  the  business's  loss of revenue or
    56  increased expenses:

        S. 1                               14

     1    a. Significant loss of revenue during the COVID-19 pandemic; or
     2    b. Significant increase in necessary  expenses  related  to  providing
     3  personal  protective equipment to employees or purchasing and installing
     4  other protective equipment to prevent the transmission of COVID-19 with-
     5  in the business; or
     6    c.  Moving expenses and difficulty in securing an  alternative commer-
     7  cial property make it a hardship for the business to relocate to another
     8  property during the COVID-19 pandemic; or
     9    d. One or more of the business's tenants has defaulted  on  a  signif-
    10  icant amount of their rent payments since March 1, 2020.
    11    § 3. The foreclosing party shall include a "Hardship Declaration" with
    12  every  notice required provided to a mortgagor prior to filing an action
    13  for foreclosure. Such notice shall also include a mailing address, tele-
    14  phone number and active email address the mortgagor can use  to  contact
    15  the foreclosing party and return the hardship declaration.
    16    §  4. No court shall accept for filing any action to foreclose a mort-
    17  gage unless the foreclosing party or an agent of the  foreclosing  party
    18  files an affidavit, under penalty of perjury:
    19    1.  of  service  demonstrating  the  manner  in  which the foreclosing
    20  party's agent served a copy of the hardship  declaration  with  required
    21  notices, if any, provided to the mortgagor, and
    22    2.  a.  attesting that, at the time of filing, neither the foreclosing
    23  party nor any agent of the foreclosing party  has  received  a  hardship
    24  declaration from the mortgagor; or
    25    b.  attesting  that at the time of filing, the foreclosing party or an
    26  agent of the foreclosing party has received a hardship declaration  from
    27  the mortgagor, but the foreclosing party believes in good faith that the
    28  hardship certified in the hardship declaration does not exist.
    29    At  the  earliest possible opportunity, the court shall seek confirma-
    30  tion on the record or in writing that the mortgagor has received a  copy
    31  of  the  hardship declaration and whether the mortgagor has returned the
    32  hardship declaration to the foreclosing party or an agent of  the  fore-
    33  closing  party.   If the court determines a mortgagor has not received a
    34  hardship declaration, then the court shall stay  the  proceeding  for  a
    35  reasonable period of time, which shall be no less than ten business days
    36  or  any  longer period provided by law, to ensure the mortgagor received
    37  and fully considered whether to submit the hardship declaration.
    38    § 5. In any action to foreclose a mortgage in which a judgment of sale
    39  has not been issued, including actions filed on or before March 7, 2020,
    40  if the mortgagor provides a  hardship  declaration  to  the  foreclosing
    41  party, the court, or an agent of the foreclosing party or the court, the
    42  proceeding  shall  be  stayed  until at least January 15, 2022.  If such
    43  hardship declaration is provided to the foreclosing party  or  agent  of
    44  the  foreclosing  party,  such foreclosing party or agent shall promptly
    45  file it with the court, advising the court in writing the  index  number
    46  of all relevant cases.
    47    § 6. In any action to foreclose a mortgage in which a judgment of sale
    48  has  been issued prior to the effective date of this act but has not yet
    49  been executed as of the effective date of this  act,  including  actions
    50  filed  on or before March 7, 2020, the court shall stay the execution of
    51  the judgment at least until the court has held a status conference  with
    52  the  parties.  In  any  action to foreclose a mortgage, if the mortgagor
    53  provides a hardship declaration to the foreclosing party, the court,  or
    54  an  agent  of the foreclosing party or the court, prior to the execution
    55  of the judgment, the execution shall be stayed until  at  least  January
    56  15,  2022.  If  such hardship declaration is provided to the foreclosing

        S. 1                               15
 
     1  party or agent of the foreclosing party, such foreclosing party or agent
     2  shall promptly file it with the court, advising the court in writing the
     3  index number of all relevant cases.
     4    § 7. The office of court administration shall post and maintain a copy
     5  of  the  hardship  declaration  on  the website of such office beginning
     6  within fifteen days of the effective date of this act.
     7    § 8. Unless a court determines a mortgator's  hardship  claim  invalid
     8  pursuant  to  section  nine  of  this  act, a hardship declaration shall
     9  create a rebuttable presumption that the mortgagor is  suffering  finan-
    10  cial  hardship, in any judicial or administrative proceeding that may be
    11  brought, for the purposes of establishing a defense under  an  executive
    12  order  of  the  governor or any other local or state law, order or regu-
    13  lation restricting actions to foreclose a mortgage against  a  mortgagor
    14  suffering  from  a  financial  hardship  during  or  due to the COVID-19
    15  pandemic provided that the absence of a hardship declaration  shall  not
    16  create a presumption that a financial hardship is not present.
    17    §  9. 1. Notwithstanding any other provision of this act, a stay under
    18  this part shall be granted or  continued  unless  the  court  finds  the
    19  defendant's  hardship claim invalid.  A motion may be made by the plain-
    20  tiff, attesting a good faith belief that the defendant has  not  experi-
    21  enced  a  hardship,  with  notice  to the defendant, and the court shall
    22  grant a hearing to determine whether to find  the  defendant's  hardship
    23  claim invalid.
    24    2.  After  any  hearing,  if  the court finds the defendant's hardship
    25  claim valid, the court shall grant or continue a stay pursuant  to  this
    26  act.
    27    3.  After a hearing, if the court finds the defendant's hardship claim
    28  invalid, the action shall continue to a determination on the merits.
    29    § 10. This act shall take effect immediately and  sections  one,  two,
    30  three,  four,  five, six, seven and nine of this act shall expire and be
    31  deemed repealed January 15, 2022.

    32                                  SUBPART C
 
    33    Section 1. Application. This act shall apply to any  action  to  fore-
    34  close on delinquent taxes or sell a tax lien relating to commercial real
    35  property,  provided  the owner or mortgagor of such property owns ten or
    36  fewer commercial units whether directly or indirectly and is a  business
    37  that  is  resident  in New York State, independently owned and operated,
    38  not dominant in its field, and employs one hundred or fewer persons. The
    39  ten or fewer commercial units may be in more than one property or build-
    40  ing as long as the units are currently  occupied  by  a  tenant  or  are
    41  available for rent.
    42    §  2.  Definitions.  For  purposes of this act: 1. "Tax lien" means an
    43  unpaid tax, special ad valorem levy, special assessment or other  charge
    44  imposed upon real property by or on behalf of a municipal corporation or
    45  special  district  or  other public or private entity which is an encum-
    46  brance on real property, whether or not evidenced by a  written  instru-
    47  ment.
    48    2.  "Tax  foreclosure  and tax lien sale" shall mean any such tax lien
    49  sale or tax foreclosure pursuant to article 11 of the real property  tax
    50  law,  or  any general, special or local law related to real property tax
    51  lien sales or real property tax foreclosures.
    52    3. "Hardship Declaration" means a. a hardship declaration filed pursu-
    53  ant to chapters 73, 104 or 154 of the laws of 2021, or b. the  following

        S. 1                               16
 
     1  statement  in  14-point  type, whether in physical or electronic written
     2  form:
     3         "COMMERCIAL OWNER DECLARATION OF COVID-19-RELATED HARDSHIP
     4  I  am  the owner, chief executive officer, president, or similar officer
     5  of (name of the business), which is the owner of the commercial property
     6  at (address).  My business owns, whether directly or indirectly, ten  or
     7  fewer  commercial  units.    My  business is resident in New York State,
     8  independently owned and operated, not dominant in its field, and employs
     9  one hundred or fewer persons.   My business  is  experiencing  financial
    10  hardship,  and is unable to pay its full tax bill because of one or more
    11  of the following:
    12    (i) Significant loss of revenue during the COVID-19 pandemic.
    13    (ii) Significant increase in necessary expenses related  to  providing
    14  personal  protective equipment to employees or purchasing and installing
    15  other protective equipment to prevent the transmission of COVID-19 with-
    16  in the business.
    17    (iii) Moving  expenses  and  difficulty  in  securing  an  alternative
    18  commercial  property  make it a hardship for the business to relocate to
    19  another property during the COVID-19 pandemic.
    20    (iv)  One or more of the business's tenants has defaulted on a signif-
    21  icant amount of their rent payments since March 1, 2020.
    22    To the extent that the business has  lost  revenue  or  had  increased
    23  expenses, any public assistance that the business has received since the
    24  start  of  the  COVID-19 pandemic must not fully make up for the loss of
    25  revenue or increased expenses, and the business still meets  the  afore-
    26  mentioned eligibility criteria to qualify for a financial hardship.
    27    I  understand  that  lawful fees, penalties or interest for not having
    28  paid the business's taxes in full may still be charged or collected  and
    29  may  result  in  a  foreclosure  action against the business on or after
    30  January 15, 2022, if the business does not fully  repay  any  missed  or
    31  partial payments and fees.
    32  Signed:
    33  Printed Name:
    34  Date Signed:
    35  NOTICE:  You  are signing and submitting this form under penalty of law.
    36  That means it is against the law to make a statement on this  form  that
    37  you know is false."
    38    4.  "Hardship"  means  a  business  is unable to pay the full tax bill
    39  because of one or more of the following reasons and any  public  assist-
    40  ance  the business has received since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic
    41  does not fully make up for the business's loss of revenue  or  increased
    42  expenses:
    43    a. Significant loss of revenue during the COVID-19 pandemic; or
    44    b.  Significant  increase  in  necessary expenses related to providing
    45  personal protective equipment to employees or purchasing and  installing
    46  other protective equipment to prevent the transmission of COVID-19 with-
    47  in the business; or
    48    c.  Moving  expenses and difficulty in securing an alternative commer-
    49  cial property make it a hardship for the business to relocate to another
    50  property during the COVID-19 pandemic; or
    51    d. One  or  more of the business's tenants has defaulted on a  signif-
    52  icant amount of their rent payments since March 1, 2020.
    53    § 3. 1. A commercial real property owner may submit a "Hardship Decla-
    54  ration"  to  any  village, town, city, school district, county, or other
    55  entity or person which conducts tax foreclosures or tax lien sales.

        S. 1                               17
 
     1    2. At least thirty days prior to the date on which a  sale  of  a  tax
     2  lien is scheduled to occur, or upon the filing of a petition of foreclo-
     3  sure  of  a  tax  lien,  the enforcing officer or other person or entity
     4  conducting such tax lien sale or tax foreclosure shall notify the  owner
     5  of the affected property of such owner's rights under this act and shall
     6  notify the owner that a copy of the hardship declaration can be accessed
     7  on  the  New York State Department of Tax and Finance's website and also
     8  provide a link to such declaration form. For the purposes of  this  act,
     9  "enforcing  officer"  shall have the same meaning as defined in subdivi-
    10  sion 3 of section 1102 of the real property tax law. The New York  State
    11  Department  of  Tax  and  Finance  shall  publish a copy of the hardship
    12  declaration on its website.
    13    3. The submission of such  a  declaration,  unless  withdrawn  by  the
    14  owner,  shall  act  as  a  temporary stay applicable to all entities and
    15  persons of all such tax lien  sales  and  tax  foreclosure  actions  and
    16  proceedings  against  such  owner  for  such  property  that  have  been
    17  commenced or could have been commenced before January 15, 2022.
    18    4. While such stay is in effect, no other action or  proceeding  shall
    19  be commenced to recover any part of such delinquent taxes.
    20    5.  Any  applicable statutes of limitation for the commencement of any
    21  action or proceeding to sell a tax lien  or  foreclose  a  tax  lien  is
    22  tolled until such stay has expired. The obligation to pay the balance of
    23  such  delinquent taxes is not rendered invalid, released or extinguished
    24  by such stay.
    25    6. Unless a court determines an owner's hardship claim invalid  pursu-
    26  ant  to  subdivision seven of this section, a hardship declaration shall
    27  create a rebuttable presumption that the owner is experiencing financial
    28  hardship, in any judicial  or  administrative  proceeding  that  may  be
    29  brought,  for  the purposes of establishing a defense under an executive
    30  order of the governor or any other local or state law,  order  or  regu-
    31  lation  restricting actions to  sell a tax lien or foreclose  a tax lien
    32  against an owner suffering from a financial hardship during or due    to
    33  the   COVID-19  pandemic, provided that the absence of a hardship decla-
    34  ration shall not create a presumption that a financial hardship  is  not
    35  present.
    36    7.  a.  Notwithstanding  any other provision of this act, a stay under
    37  this part shall be granted or  continued  unless  the  court  finds  the
    38  defendant's  hardship claim invalid.  A motion may be made by the plain-
    39  tiff, if the plaintiff is not a governmental entity,  attesting  a  good
    40  faith  belief  that  the  defendant has not experienced a hardship, with
    41  notice to the defendant, and the court shall grant a hearing  to  deter-
    42  mine whether to find the defendant's hardship claim invalid.
    43    b.  After  any  hearing,  if  the court finds the defendant's hardship
    44  claim valid, the court shall grant a stay or continue a stay pursuant to
    45  this act.
    46    c. After a hearing, if the court finds the defendant's hardship  claim
    47  invalid, the action shall continue to a determination on the merits.
    48    §  4.  This act shall take effect immediately and sections one and two
    49  and subdivisions 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 and 7 of section three of this act  shall
    50  expire and be deemed repealed January 15, 2022.
 
    51                                  SUBPART D
 
    52    Section 1. Application. 1. This act shall apply to an owner of commer-
    53  cial  real  property,  provided  the owner or mortgagor of such property
    54  owns ten or fewer commercial units whether directly or indirectly and is

        S. 1                               18
 
     1  a business that is resident in New York State, independently  owned  and
     2  operated,  not  dominant  in its field, and employs one hundred or fewer
     3  persons. The ten or fewer commercial units may be in more than one prop-
     4  erty  or building as long as the total aggregate number of ten units are
     5  currently occupied by a tenant or are available for rent.
     6    2. Hardship declaration. For purposes of this act, "hardship  declara-
     7  tion"  shall  mean  a. a hardship declaration filed pursuant to chapters
     8  73, 104 or 154 of the laws of 2021, or b.  the  following  statement  in
     9  14-point  type,  whether in physical or electronic written form, and the
    10  department of financial services shall publish a copy  of  the  hardship
    11  declaration on its website:
    12    "NOTICE  TO  COMMERCIAL  OWNER/MORTGAGOR: If you have lost significant
    13  revenue or had  significantly  increased  necessary  costs  due  to  the
    14  COVID-19  pandemic,  and  you sign and deliver this hardship declaration
    15  form to your lending institution, you cannot be discriminated against in
    16  the determination of whether credit should be extended or reported nega-
    17  tively to a credit reporting agency until at least January 15, 2022.
    18    If a lending institution provided you  with  this  form,  the  lending
    19  institution  must  also  provide  you  with a mailing address and e-mail
    20  address to which you can return this form. You should  keep  a  copy  or
    21  picture of the signed form for your records.
    22    COMMERCIAL OWNER/MORTGAGOR DECLARATION OF COVID-19-RELATED HARDSHIP
    23    I am the owner, chief executive officer, president, or similar officer
    24  of  (name of the business), which is the OWNER/MORTGAGOR of the property
    25  at (address of commercial unit).  My business owns, whether directly  or
    26  indirectly,  ten  or fewer commercial units.  My business is resident in
    27  New York State, independently owned and operated, not  dominant  in  its
    28  field, and employs one hundred or fewer persons.  My business is experi-
    29  encing  financial  hardship,  and  is unable to pay the mortgage in full
    30  because of one or more of the following:
    31    (i) Significant loss of revenue during the COVID-19 pandemic.
    32    (ii) Significant increase in necessary out-of-pocket expenses  related
    33  to  providing  personal  protective equipment to employees or purchasing
    34  and installing other protective equipment to prevent the transmission of
    35  COVID-19 within the business.
    36    (iii) Moving  expenses  and  difficulty  in  securing  an  alternative
    37  commercial  property  make it a hardship for the business to relocate to
    38  another commercial property during the COVID-19 pandemic.
    39    (iv) One or more of my tenants has defaulted on a  significant  amount
    40  of their rent payments since March 1, 2020.
    41    To  the  extent  that  the  business has lost revenue or had increased
    42  expenses, any public assistance that the business has received since the
    43  start of the COVID-19 pandemic must not fully make up for  the  loss  of
    44  revenue  or  increased expenses, and the business still meets the afore-
    45  mentioned eligibility criteria to qualify for a financial hardship.
    46  Signed:
    47  Printed Name:
    48  Date Signed:
    49  NOTICE: You are signing and submitting this form under penalty  of  law.
    50  That  means  it is against the law to make a statement on this form that
    51  you know is false."
    52    3. Discrimination in credit decisions. Notwithstanding any law to  the
    53  contrary,  lending  institutions  shall not discriminate in the determi-
    54  nation of whether credit should be extended to any owner  of  commercial
    55  real  property as defined in subdivision one of this section because, as
    56  provided for in this act, such owner has been granted a stay of mortgage

        S. 1                               19
 
     1  foreclosure proceedings, tax foreclosure  proceedings  or  of  tax  lien
     2  sales, or that an owner of commercial real property as defined in subdi-
     3  vision one of this section is currently in arrears and has filed a hard-
     4  ship declaration with such lender.
     5    4.  Prohibition  on negative credit reporting. Notwithstanding any law
     6  to the contrary, as provided for in this act, the granting of a stay  of
     7  mortgage  foreclosure  proceedings,  tax  foreclosure proceedings or tax
     8  lien sales, or that an owner of commercial real property as  defined  in
     9  subdivision  one of this section is currently in arrears and has filed a
    10  hardship declaration with their lender shall not be negatively  reported
    11  to any credit reporting agency.
    12    §  2.  This  act shall take effect immediately and shall expire and be
    13  deemed repealed January 15, 2022.
    14    § 2. Severability clause. If any clause, sentence, paragraph, subdivi-
    15  sion, section, subpart or part of this act  shall  be  adjudged  by  any
    16  court  of  competent jurisdiction to be invalid, such judgment shall not
    17  affect, impair, or  invalidate  the  remainder  thereof,  but  shall  be
    18  confined  in  its operation to the clause, sentence, paragraph, subdivi-
    19  sion, section, subpart or part thereof directly involved in the  contro-
    20  versy  in  which  such  judgment  shall have been rendered. It is hereby
    21  declared to be the intent of the legislature that this  act  would  have
    22  been enacted even if such invalid provisions had not been included here-
    23  in.
    24    §  3.  This  act shall take effect immediately provided, however, that
    25  the applicable effective date of Subparts A through D of this act  shall
    26  be as specifically set forth in the last section of such Subparts.
 
    27                                   PART C
 
    28    Section  1. This Part enacts into law components of legislation relat-
    29  ing to residential eviction  and  foreclosure  protections.  Each compo-
    30  nent  is wholly contained within a  Subpart  identified  as  Subparts  A
    31  through  D.   The   effective   date   for   each  particular  provision
    32  contained within such Subpart is set forth in the last section  of  such
    33  Subpart.  Any provision   in   any   section contained within a Subpart,
    34  including the effective date of the Subpart, which makes reference to  a
    35  section  "of  this  act",  when used in connection with that  particular
    36  component, shall  be   deemed to mean and  refer  to  the  corresponding
    37  section  of the Subpart in which it is found. Section three of this Part
    38  sets forth the general effective date of this Part.
 
    39                                  SUBPART A
 
    40    Section 1. Definitions. For the purposes of this act:    1.  "Eviction
    41  proceeding"  means  a  summary  proceeding to recover possession of real
    42  property  under  article  seven  of  the  real  property   actions   and
    43  proceedings  law  relating  to  a residential dwelling unit or any other
    44  judicial or administrative proceeding  to  recover  possession  of  real
    45  property relating to a residential dwelling unit.
    46    2. "Landlord" includes a landlord, owner of a residential property and
    47  any  other  person  with  a  legal  right to pursue eviction, possessory
    48  action or a money judgment for rent, including  arrears,  owed  or  that
    49  becomes  due during the COVID-19 covered period, as defined in section 1
    50  of chapter 127 of the laws of 2020.
    51    3. "Tenant" includes a residential tenant, lawful occupant of a dwell-
    52  ing unit, or any other person responsible for paying rent, use and occu-

        S. 1                               20
 
     1  pancy, or any other financial obligation under a  residential  lease  or
     2  tenancy  agreement,  but does not include a residential tenant or lawful
     3  occupant with a seasonal use lease where such tenant has a primary resi-
     4  dence to which to return to.
     5    4. "Hardship declaration" means:
     6    a. a hardship declaration filed pursuant to chapter 381 of the laws of
     7  2020 or chapter 104 of the laws of 2021; or
     8    b. the following statement, or a substantially equivalent statement in
     9  the tenant's primary language, in 14-point type, published by the office
    10  of court administration, whether in physical or electronic written form:
    11    "NOTICE  TO  TENANT:  If  you  have lost income or had increased costs
    12  during the COVID-19 pandemic, or moving would pose a significant  health
    13  risk  for you or a member of your household due to an increased risk for
    14  severe illness or death from  COVID-19  due  to  an  underlying  medical
    15  condition,  and  you  sign and deliver this hardship declaration form to
    16  your landlord, you may be protected from eviction until at least January
    17  15, 2022 for nonpayment of rent or for holding over after the expiration
    18  of your lease. If your landlord files an eviction against  you  and  you
    19  provide this form to the landlord or the court, the eviction proceedings
    20  will  be  postponed until January 15, 2022 unless your landlord moves to
    21  challenge your declaration of hardship. If the court finds your hardship
    22  claim valid, the eviction proceeding will be postponed until after Janu-
    23  ary 15, 2022.   While the eviction  proceeding  is  postponed,  you  may
    24  remain  in possession of your unit. You may still be evicted for violat-
    25  ing your lease by intentionally causing significant damage to the  prop-
    26  erty or persistently and unreasonably engaging in behavior that substan-
    27  tially  infringes on the use and enjoyment of other tenants or occupants
    28  or causes a substantial safety hazard to others.
    29    If your landlord has provided you with this form, your  landlord  must
    30  also  provide you with a mailing address and e-mail address to which you
    31  can return this form. If your landlord has already started  an  eviction
    32  proceeding  against  you,  you can return this form to either your land-
    33  lord, the court, or both at any time. You should keep a copy or  picture
    34  of  the signed form for your records. You will still owe any unpaid rent
    35  to your landlord. You should also keep careful track of  what  you  have
    36  paid and any amount you still owe.
    37    For  more  information  about legal resources that may be available to
    38  you, go to www.nycourts.gov/evictions/nyc/ or call 718-557-1379  if  you
    39  live  in  New York City or go to www.nycourts.gov/evictions/outside-nyc/
    40  or call a local bar association or legal services provider if  you  live
    41  outside  of New York City. Financial assistance may be available to you,
    42  even if you have not qualified for assistance in the  past.  You  should
    43  contact  your local housing assistance office or the Office of Temporary
    44  and Disability Assistance (OTDA) for application information.
 
    45        TENANT'S DECLARATION OF HARDSHIP DURING THE COVID-19 PANDEMIC
 
    46  I am a tenant, lawful occupant, or other person responsible  for  paying
    47  rent, use and occupancy, or any other financial obligation under a lease
    48  or tenancy agreement at (address of dwelling unit).
    49  YOU  MUST  INDICATE BELOW YOUR QUALIFICATION FOR  EVICTION PROTECTION BY
    50  SELECTING OPTION "A" OR "B", OR BOTH.
 
    51  A. ( ) I am experiencing financial hardship, and I am unable to  pay  my
    52  rent  or  other  financial obligations under the lease in full or obtain

        S. 1                               21
 
     1  alternative suitable permanent housing because of one  or  more  of  the
     2  following:
     3    1. Significant loss of household income during the COVID-19 pandemic.
     4    2.  Increase in necessary out-of-pocket expenses related to performing
     5  essential work or related to health impacts during the COVID-19  pandem-
     6  ic.
     7    3.  Childcare  responsibilities  or  responsibilities  to  care for an
     8  elderly, disabled, or sick family member during  the  COVID-19  pandemic
     9  have  negatively  affected  my  ability  or the ability of someone in my
    10  household to obtain meaningful employment or earn income or increased my
    11  necessary out-of-pocket expenses.
    12    4. Moving expenses and difficulty I have securing alternative  housing
    13  make  it  a  hardship for me to relocate to another residence during the
    14  COVID-19 pandemic.
    15    5. Other circumstances related to the COVID-19 pandemic have negative-
    16  ly affected my ability to obtain meaningful employment or earn income or
    17  have  significantly  reduced  my  household  income   or   significantly
    18  increased my expenses.
    19  To  the  extent  that  I  have  lost  household  income or had increased
    20  expenses,  any  public  assistance,  including  unemployment  insurance,
    21  pandemic  unemployment  assistance, disability insurance, or paid family
    22  leave, that I have received since the start  of  the  COVID-19  pandemic
    23  does  not  fully  make  up  for my loss of household income or increased
    24  expenses.
 
    25  B. ( ) Vacating the premises and moving into new permanent housing would
    26  pose a significant health risk because I or one or more  members  of  my
    27  household  have  an  increased  risk  for  severe  illness or death from
    28  COVID-19 due to being over the age of sixty-five, having a disability or
    29  having an underlying medical condition, which may  include  but  is  not
    30  limited to being immunocompromised.

    31  I  understand  that  I  must comply with all other lawful terms under my
    32  tenancy, lease agreement or similar contract. I further understand  that
    33  lawful  fees,  penalties or interest for not having paid rent in full or
    34  met other financial obligations as required by my tenancy, lease  agree-
    35  ment  or  similar  contract  may  still  be charged or collected and may
    36  result in a monetary judgment against me. I further understand  that  my
    37  landlord  may  request a hearing to challenge the certification of hard-
    38  ship made herein, and that I will have the opportunity to participate in
    39  any proceedings regarding my tenancy.   I  further  understand  that  my
    40  landlord  may  be able to seek eviction after January 15, 2022, and that
    41  the law may provide certain protections at that time that  are  separate
    42  from those available through this declaration.
 
    43  Signed:
    44  Printed name:
    45  Date signed:
 
    46  NOTICE:  You  are signing and submitting this form under penalty of law.
    47  That means it is against the law to make a statement on this  form  that
    48  you know is false."
    49    5.  "Hardship"  means  either:  (a)  an inability to pay rent or other
    50  financial obligations due in full pursuant to a lease or  rental  agree-
    51  ment or obtain alternative suitable permanent housing due to one or more
    52  of the following reasons where public assistance, including unemployment

        S. 1                               22
 
     1  insurance,  pandemic  unemployment  assistance, disability insurance, or
     2  paid family leave, does not fully make up  for  the  loss  of  household
     3  income or increase expenses:
     4    (i) a significant loss of household income during the COVID-19 pandem-
     5  ic; or
     6    (ii)  increase in necessary out-of-pocket expenses related to perform-
     7  ance of essential work or related to health impacts during the  COVID-19
     8  pandemic; or
     9    (iii)  childcare  responsibilities  or responsibilities to care for an
    10  elderly, disabled, or sick family member during  the  COVID-19  pandemic
    11  have negatively affected the ability of the tenant or a household member
    12  to obtain meaningful employment or earn income; or
    13    (iv) increased necessary out-of-pocket expenses; or
    14    (v)  moving  expenses  and  related difficulty in securing alternative
    15  housing make it a hardship to relocate to another    residence    during
    16  the COVID-19 pandemic; or
    17    (vi) other circumstances related to the COVID-19 pandemic have signif-
    18  icantly      reduced   household   income   or   significantly increased
    19  expenses; or
    20    (b) an inability to vacate the premises and move  into  new  permanent
    21  housing because doing so would pose a significant risk of severe illness
    22  or  death from COVID-19 that a tenant or household member would face due
    23  to being over the age of sixty-five, having a disability or having    an
    24  underlying  medical   condition, which may include but is not limited to
    25  being immunocompromised.
    26    § 2. Pre-eviction notices. A landlord shall include a "Hardship Decla-
    27  ration" in 14-point type, with every written demand for rent made pursu-
    28  ant to subdivision 2 of section 711 of the  real  property  actions  and
    29  proceedings  law, with any other written notice required by the lease or
    30  tenancy agreement, law or rule to be provided prior to the  commencement
    31  of an eviction proceeding, and with every notice of petition served on a
    32  tenant.  Such notice shall also include:
    33    1.  a  mailing  address, telephone number and active email address the
    34  tenant can use to contact the landlord and return the hardship  declara-
    35  tion; and
    36    2.  a  list  of  all  not-for-profit  legal service providers actively
    37  handling housing matters in the county where the  subject  premises  are
    38  located.  Such  lists  shall  be  prepared and regularly updated, to the
    39  extent practicable, for such purpose and published on the website of the
    40  office of court administration.
    41    § 3. Required affidavit. 1. No court shall accept for filing any peti-
    42  tion or other filing to commence an eviction proceeding unless the peti-
    43  tioner or an agent of the petitioner  files  an  affidavit  of  service,
    44  under  penalty  of  perjury, demonstrating the manner in which the peti-
    45  tioner or the petitioner's agent served a copy of the hardship  declara-
    46  tion  in  English  and  the  tenant's  primary  language,  if other than
    47  English, with any rent demand and with any other written notice required
    48  by the lease or tenancy agreement, law or rule to be provided  prior  to
    49  the  commencement  of  an  eviction  proceeding,  and an affidavit under
    50  penalty of perjury:
    51    a. attesting that, at the time of filing, neither the  petitioner  nor
    52  any agent of the petitioner has received a hardship declaration from the
    53  respondent  or any other tenant or occupant of the dwelling unit that is
    54  the subject of the proceeding, or
    55    b. attesting that the respondent or another tenant or occupant of  the
    56  dwelling unit that is the subject of the proceeding has returned a hard-

        S. 1                               23
 
     1  ship  declaration,  but  the respondent is intentionally causing signif-
     2  icant damage to the property or persistently and  unreasonably  engaging
     3  in  behavior  that  substantially  infringes on the use and enjoyment of
     4  other  tenants  or  occupants  or  causes a substantial safety hazard to
     5  others, with a specific description of the behavior alleged, or
     6    c. attesting that the respondent or another tenant or occupant of  the
     7  dwelling unit that is the subject of the proceeding has returned a hard-
     8  ship  declaration,  but  the  petitioner believes in good faith that the
     9  hardship certified in the hardship declaration does not exist.
    10    2. Upon accepting a petition pursuant to article 7 of the real proper-
    11  ty actions and proceedings law, the attorney,  judge  or  clerk  of  the
    12  court,  as  the case may be, shall determine whether a copy of the hard-
    13  ship declaration in English and the tenant's primary language, if  other
    14  than  English, and a copy of any affidavit filed pursuant to subdivision
    15  one of this section is annexed to the served notice of petition and,  if
    16  not,  shall  ensure that a copy of the hardship declaration and any such
    17  affidavit is attached to such notice.   If  the  petitioner  submits  an
    18  affidavit  pursuant to paragraph c of subdivision 1 of this section, the
    19  following notice in at least fourteen-point type shall also  be  annexed
    20  as a cover page to the notice of petition:
    21    "NOTICE TO TENANT: THIS IS A PETITION TO COMMENCE AN EVICTION PROCEED-
    22  ING  AGAINST  YOU,  BUT  THE PROCEEDING WILL NOT CONTINUE UNTIL AT LEAST
    23  JANUARY 15, 2022, UNLESS YOUR LANDLORD MOVES TO CHALLENGE YOUR CLAIM  OF
    24  AN EXEMPTION FROM EVICTION IN YOUR HARDSHIP DECLARATION FORM.
    25    IF YOUR LANDLORD MOVES TO CHALLENGE YOUR HARDSHIP CLAIM, YOU ARE ENTI-
    26  TLED  TO A HEARING. IF THE COURT RULES YOUR HARDSHIP CLAIM INVALID AFTER
    27  THE HEARING, THE LAWSUIT  MAY  PROCEED  TOWARD  POSSIBLE  EVICTION,  BUT
    28  UNLESS  AND  UNTIL THE COURT ISSUES AN EVICTION WARRANT AGAINST YOU, YOU
    29  MAY NOT BE EVICTED."
    30    Service of the notice of petition with  the  attached  copies  of  the
    31  hardship  declaration  and affidavits shall be made by personal delivery
    32  to the respondent, unless such service cannot be  made  with  due  dili-
    33  gence,  in  which case service may be made under section 735 of the real
    34  property actions and proceedings law.  At the earliest possible opportu-
    35  nity, the court shall seek confirmation on the record or in writing from
    36  the respondent that the respondent has received the hardship declaration
    37  and whether the respondent has submitted a hardship declaration  to  the
    38  petitioner,  an  agent  of  the  petitioner,  or the court. If the court
    39  determines a respondent has not received a  hardship  declaration,  then
    40  the  court  shall  stay  the proceeding for a reasonable period of time,
    41  which shall be no less than ten  business  days  or  any  longer  period
    42  provided  by law, and provide the respondent with a copy of the hardship
    43  declaration in English and the respondent's primary language,  if  other
    44  than  English,  to  ensure  the respondent received and fully considered
    45  whether to submit the hardship declaration.  The court shall also advise
    46  the petitioner  and  respondent  substantially  as  follows:  "Financial
    47  assistance  may be available to landlords and tenants, even if they have
    48  not qualified for assistance in the past.  You should contact your local
    49  housing assistance office or the  Office  of  Temporary  and  Disability
    50  Assistance  for  application  information."  If  the court is a court of
    51  record, such advisory shall be given on the record.
    52    § 4. Pending proceedings. In  any  eviction  proceeding  in  which  an
    53  eviction  warrant  has  not  been issued, including eviction proceedings
    54  filed on or before March 7, 2020, if the respondent provides a  hardship
    55  declaration  to the petitioner, the court, or an agent of the petitioner
    56  or the court, the eviction proceeding shall be  stayed  until  at  least

        S. 1                               24
 
     1  January  15, 2022. If such hardship declaration is provided to the peti-
     2  tioner or agent, such petitioner or agent shall promptly  file  it  with
     3  the  court,  advising the court in writing the index number of all rele-
     4  vant cases.
     5    §  5.  Default  judgments.  No  court  shall  issue  a judgment in any
     6  proceeding authorizing a warrant of eviction against  a  respondent  who
     7  has defaulted, or authorize the enforcement of an eviction pursuant to a
     8  default  judgment,  prior  to  January 15, 2022, without first holding a
     9  hearing after the effective date of this act, upon motion of  the  peti-
    10  tioner. The petitioner or an agent of the petitioner shall file an affi-
    11  davit attesting that the petitioner or the petitioner's agent has served
    12  notice  of  the date, time, and place of such hearing on the respondent,
    13  including a copy of such notice. If a default judgment has been  awarded
    14  at  any  time  prior to the effective date of chapter 381 of the laws of
    15  2020, including in eviction proceedings filed  on  or  before  March  7,
    16  2020, or between August 13, 2021 and the effective date of this act, the
    17  default  judgment  shall be vacated, regardless of any court proceedings
    18  that occurred subsequent to entry of the default judgment and the matter
    19  restored to the court calendar upon the  respondent's  written  or  oral
    20  request  to  the court either before or during such hearing and an order
    21  to show cause to vacate the default judgment shall not be required.
    22    § 6. Post warrant of eviction.  a. (i) In any eviction  proceeding  in
    23  which an eviction warrant has been issued prior to the effective date of
    24  this act, but has not yet been executed as of the effective date of this
    25  act,  including  eviction  proceedings filed on or before March 7, 2020,
    26  the court shall stay the execution of the warrant  at  least  until  the
    27  court  has  held  a  status  conference  with  the  parties. (ii) In any
    28  eviction proceeding, if the respondent provides a  hardship  declaration
    29  to  the  petitioner,  the  court,  or  an agent of the petitioner or the
    30  court, prior to the execution of the warrant,  the  execution  shall  be
    31  stayed  until at least January 15, 2022. If such hardship declaration is
    32  provided to the petitioner or agent of the petitioner,  such  petitioner
    33  or  agent  shall  promptly file it with the court, advising the court in
    34  writing the index number of all relevant cases.
    35    b. In any eviction proceeding in which  a  warrant  has  been  issued,
    36  including  eviction  proceedings  filed  on or before March 7, 2020, any
    37  warrant issued shall not be effective as against the occupants,  unless,
    38  in  addition  to the requirements under section 749 of the real property
    39  actions and proceedings law for warrants, such warrant states:
    40    (i) The tenant has not submitted  the  hardship  declaration  and  the
    41  tenant  was  properly  served  with  a  copy of the hardship declaration
    42  pursuant to this section, listing dates the tenant was served  with  the
    43  hardship declaration by the petitioner and the court; or
    44    (ii)  The  tenant  is ineligible for a stay under this act because the
    45  court has found the respondent's hardship claim invalid, or the respond-
    46  ent intentionally caused significant damage  to  the  property,  or  the
    47  respondent  is  persistently  and unreasonably engaging in behavior that
    48  substantially infringes on the use and enjoyment  of  other  tenants  or
    49  occupants  or  causes  a  substantial  safety  hazard  to others, with a
    50  specific description of the behavior.
    51    c. No court shall issue a warrant directed to the sheriff of the coun-
    52  ty or to any constable or marshal of the city in which the property,  or
    53  a  portion thereof, is situated, or, if it is not situated in a city, to
    54  any constable of any town in the county, that does not comply  with  the
    55  requirements of this section.

        S. 1                               25
 
     1    d.  No officer to whom the warrant is directed shall execute a warrant
     2  for eviction issued that does not comply with the requirements  of  this
     3  section.
     4    e.  Unless the warrant contains the information contained in paragraph
     5  (ii) of subdivision b of this section, if any tenant delivers the  hard-
     6  ship  declaration  to  the  officer to whom the warrant is directed, the
     7  officer shall not execute the warrant and shall return the hardship form
     8  to the court indicating the appropriate index/case number  the  form  is
     9  associated with.
    10    §  7.  Section four and paragraph (ii) of subdivision a of section six
    11  of this act shall not apply if  the  tenant:  (i)  intentionally  caused
    12  significant  damage  to the property; or (ii) is persistently and unrea-
    13  sonably engaging in behavior that substantially infringes on the use and
    14  enjoyment of other tenants or occupants or causes a  substantial  safety
    15  hazard to others, provided:
    16    1.  If an eviction proceeding is pending on the effective date of this
    17  act, but the petitioner has  not  previously  alleged  that  the  tenant
    18  intentionally  caused significant damage to the property or persistently
    19  and unreasonably engaged in  such  behavior,  the  petitioner  shall  be
    20  required  to submit a new petition with such allegations and comply with
    21  all notice and service requirements under article 7 of the real property
    22  actions and proceedings law and this act.
    23    2. a.  If the court has awarded a judgment against a respondent  prior
    24  to  the  effective  date  of  this  act on the basis of objectionable or
    25  nuisance behavior and the  petitioner  is  alleging  the  tenant  caused
    26  significant  damage  to  the property, the court shall hold a hearing to
    27  determine whether  the  tenant  is  continuing  to  intentionally  cause
    28  significant damage to the property.
    29    b.  If  the court has awarded a judgment against a respondent prior to
    30  the effective date of chapter 381 of the laws of 2020 or between  August
    31  13,  2021 and the effective date of this act on the basis of objectiona-
    32  ble or nuisance behavior and the petitioner is alleging  the  tenant  is
    33  persistently   engaging  in  unreasonable  behavior  that  substantially
    34  infringes on the use and enjoyment of  other  tenants  or  occupants  or
    35  causes  a  substantial  safety  hazard to others, the court shall hold a
    36  hearing to determine whether the tenant  is  continuing  to  persist  in
    37  engaging  in  unreasonable  behavior that substantially infringes on the
    38  use and enjoyment of other tenants or occupants or causes a  substantial
    39  safety hazard to others.
    40    3. For the purposes of this act, a mere  allegation of the behavior by
    41  the  petitioner  or  an  agent  of the petitioner alleging such behavior
    42  shall not be sufficient  evidence  to  establish  that  the  tenant  has
    43  engaged in such behavior.
    44    4.  If the petitioner establishes that the tenant intentionally caused
    45  significant damage to the  property  or  persistently  and  unreasonably
    46  engaged  in  such  behavior  or  the  tenant fails to provide a hardship
    47  declaration to the petitioner, petitioner's  agent  or  the  court,  the
    48  proceeding  may  continue  pursuant  to  article  7 of the real property
    49  actions and proceedings law and this act.
    50    § 8. Translation of hardship declaration. The office of court adminis-
    51  tration shall translate the hardship declaration, as defined in  section
    52  one  of  this act, into Spanish and the six most common languages in the
    53  city of New York, after Spanish, and shall post and maintain such trans-
    54  lations and an English language copy of the hardship declaration on  the
    55  website  of  such  office beginning within fifteen days of the effective
    56  date of this act.  To the extent practicable, the office of court admin-

        S. 1                               26
 
     1  istration shall post and maintain on its website translations into  such
     2  additional languages as the chief administrative judge shall deem appro-
     3  priate  to  ensure  that  tenants  have an opportunity to understand and
     4  submit hardship declarations pursuant to this act.
     5    §  9.  Rebuttable  presumption.   Unless a court determines a tenant's
     6  hardship claim invalid pursuant to section ten of this act,  a  hardship
     7  declaration  in  which  the  tenant has selected the option indicating a
     8  financial hardship shall create a rebuttable presumption that the tenant
     9  is experiencing financial hardship, in any  judicial  or  administrative
    10  proceeding  that  may  be  brought,  for  the purposes of establishing a
    11  defense under chapter 127 of the laws of 2020, an executive order of the
    12  governor or any other local or state law, order or regulation  restrict-
    13  ing  the eviction of a tenant suffering from a financial hardship during
    14  or due to COVID-19 provided that the absence of a  hardship  declaration
    15  shall not create a presumption that a financial hardship is not present.
    16    §  10.  (a)  Notwithstanding  any  other provision of this act, a stay
    17  under this act shall be granted or continued unless the court finds  the
    18  respondent's  hardship claim invalid.  A motion may be made by the peti-
    19  tioner, attesting a good faith belief that the respondent has not  expe-
    20  rienced  a  hardship, with notice to the respondent, and the court shall
    21  grant a hearing to determine whether to find the  respondent's  hardship
    22  claim invalid.
    23    (b)    After any hearing, if the court finds the hardship claim valid,
    24  the court shall grant a stay or continue a stay pursuant  to  this  act,
    25  provided  that  the  court shall direct, if the respondent appears to be
    26  eligible and has not yet applied, that the parties apply to the COVID-19
    27  emergency rental assistance program of 2021, created  by  subpart  A  of
    28  part  BB  of  chapter  56 of the laws of 2021, or a locally administered
    29  program to administer federal emergency rental assistance funding issued
    30  pursuant to section 501 of the Consolidated Appropriations Act of  2021,
    31  Pub.  L.  116-260 § 501, or section 3201 of the American Rescue Plan Act
    32  of 2021, Pub. L. 117-2 § 3201, so long as such program or  programs  are
    33  accepting applications.
    34    (c)  After  a  hearing,  if  the court finds the respondent's hardship
    35  claim invalid, the proceedings shall continue to a determination on  the
    36  merits.
    37    §  11.  This  act shall take effect immediately and sections one, two,
    38  three, four, five, six, seven, eight and ten of this  act  shall  expire
    39  January 15, 2022.
 
    40                                  SUBPART B
 
    41    Section  1.  Application.  This  section  shall apply to any action to
    42  foreclose a mortgage relating to residential real property, provided the
    43  owner or mortgagor of such property is a natural person,  regardless  of
    44  how title is held, and owns ten or fewer dwelling units whether directly
    45  or  indirectly.  The ten or fewer dwelling units may be in more than one
    46  property or building as long as the total aggregate number of ten  units
    47  includes  the  primary  residence  of the natural person requesting such
    48  relief and the remaining units are currently occupied by a tenant or are
    49  available for rent.
    50    (a) For purposes of this  act,  real  property  shall  include  shares
    51  assigned to a unit in a residential cooperative.
    52    (b) For purposes of this act, real property shall not include property
    53  that  is  vacant  and  abandoned, as defined in subdivision 2 of section
    54  1309 of the real property actions and proceedings law, which was  listed

        S. 1                               27
 
     1  on  the  statewide vacant and abandoned property electronic registry, as
     2  defined in section 1310 of the real  property  actions  and  proceedings
     3  law, prior to March 7, 2020 and that remains on such registry.
     4    Notwithstanding anything to the contrary, this act shall not apply to,
     5  and does not affect any mortgage loans made, insured, purchased or secu-
     6  ritized by a corporate governmental agency of the state constituted as a
     7  political  subdivision and public benefit corporation, or the rights and
     8  obligations of any lender, issuer, servicer or  trustee  of  such  obli-
     9  gations.
    10    §  2. Definitions. 1. For the purposes of this act, "Hardship Declara-
    11  tion" means:
    12    a. a hardship declaration filed pursuant to chapter 381 of the laws of
    13  2020 or chapter 104 of the laws of 2021; or
    14    b. the following statement, or a substantially equivalent statement in
    15  the mortgagor's primary language, in 14-point  type,  published  by  the
    16  office  of court administration, whether in physical or electronic writ-
    17  ten form:
    18    "NOTICE TO MORTGAGOR: If you have lost income or had  increased  costs
    19  during  the  COVID-19  pandemic,  and you sign and deliver this hardship
    20  declaration form to your mortgage lender or other foreclosing party, you
    21  may be protected from foreclosure until at least January 15, 2022. If  a
    22  foreclosure action is filed against you and you provide this form to the
    23  plaintiff  or  the court, the action will be postponed until January 15,
    24  2022 unless the plaintiff moves to challenge your declaration  of  hard-
    25  ship.  If  the  court  finds  your hardship claim valid, the foreclosure
    26  action will be postponed until after January 15, 2022. While the  action
    27  is postponed, you may remain in possession.
    28    If  your  mortgage lender or other foreclosing party provided you with
    29  this form, the mortgage lender or  other  foreclosing  party  must  also
    30  provide  you  with a mailing address and e-mail address to which you can
    31  return this form. If you are already in foreclosure proceedings, you may
    32  return this form to the court. You should keep a copy or picture of  the
    33  signed  form  for  your  records. You will still owe any unpaid mortgage
    34  payments and lawful fees to your lender. You should  also  keep  careful
    35  track  of  what  you  have paid and any amount you still owe.  Financial
    36  assistance may be available to you, even if  you  have  previously  been
    37  denied.  You  should  contact  your  local housing assistance office for
    38  application information.
    39             MORTGAGOR'S DECLARATION OF COVID-19-RELATED HARDSHIP
    40    I am the mortgagor of the property  at  (address  of  dwelling  unit).
    41  Including  my  primary residence, I own, whether directly or indirectly,
    42  ten or fewer residential dwelling units.  I  am  experiencing  financial
    43  hardship,  and  I am unable to pay my mortgage in full because of one or
    44  more of the following:
    45    1. Significant loss of household income during the COVID-19 pandemic.
    46    2. Increase in necessary out-of-pocket expenses related to  performing
    47  essential  work or related to health impacts during the COVID-19 pandem-
    48  ic.
    49    3. Childcare responsibilities  or  responsibilities  to  care  for  an
    50  elderly,  disabled,  or  sick family member during the COVID-19 pandemic
    51  have negatively affected my ability or the  ability  of  someone  in  my
    52  household to obtain meaningful employment or earn income or increased my
    53  necessary out-of-pocket expenses.
    54    4.  Moving expenses and difficulty I have securing alternative housing
    55  make it a hardship for me to relocate to another  residence  during  the
    56  COVID-19 pandemic.

        S. 1                               28
 
     1    5. Other circumstances related to the COVID-19 pandemic have negative-
     2  ly affected my ability to obtain meaningful employment or earn income or
     3  have   significantly   reduced  my  household  income  or  significantly
     4  increased my expenses.
     5    6.  One or more of my tenants has defaulted on a significant amount of
     6  their rent payments since March 1, 2020.
     7    To the extent I have lost household income or had increased  expenses,
     8  any  public assistance, including unemployment insurance, pandemic unem-
     9  ployment assistance, disability insurance, or paid family leave, that  I
    10  have  received  since  the start of the COVID-19 pandemic does not fully
    11  make up for my loss of household income or increased expenses.
    12    I understand that I must comply with all other lawful terms  under  my
    13  mortgage  agreement. I further understand that lawful fees, penalties or
    14  interest for not having paid my mortgage in full as required by my mort-
    15  gage agreement may still be charged or collected and  may  result  in  a
    16  monetary  judgment  against  me.   I further understand that my mortgage
    17  lender, or other foreclosing party may request a  hearing  to  challenge
    18  the  certification  of  hardship  made  herein, and that I will have the
    19  opportunity to participate in any actions or  proceedings  regarding  my
    20  mortgage  interest.   I also understand that my mortgage lender or other
    21  foreclosing party may pursue a foreclosure action against me on or after
    22  January 15, 2022, if I do not fully repay any missed or partial payments
    23  and lawful fees.
    24  Signed:
    25  Printed Name:
    26  Date Signed:
    27  NOTICE: You are signing and submitting this form under penalty  of  law.
    28  That  means  it is against the law to make a statement on this form that
    29  you know is false."
    30    2. "Hardship" means a mortgagor is unable to  pay  their  mortgage  in
    31  full  because  of  one  or more of the following reasons and any  public
    32  assistance,  including  unemployment  insurance,  pandemic  unemployment
    33  assistance, disability insurance, or paid family leave, that the mortga-
    34  gor or borrower has  received  since  the start of the COVID-19 pandemic
    35  does  not  fully make up for their loss of household income or increased
    36  expenses:
    37    (i) Significant loss of household income during the COVID-19 pandemic;
    38  or
    39    (ii) Increase in necessary out-of-pocket expenses related to  perform-
    40  ing  essential    work  or related to health impacts during the COVID-19
    41  pandemic; or
    42    (iii) Childcare responsibilities  or  responsibilities  to  care   for
    43  an  elderly,    disabled,    or   sick family member during the COVID-19
    44  pandemic negatively affected the mortgagor's ability or the  ability  of
    45  someone in   their household to obtain  meaningful  employment  or  earn
    46  income or increased their necessary out-of-pocket expenses; or
    47    (iv)  Moving expenses and difficulty the mortgagor has securing alter-
    48  native housing make it a hardship  for  the  mortgagor  to  relocate  to
    49  another  residence  during  the COVID-19 pandemic; or
    50    (v)  Other  circumstances  related to the COVID-19 pandemic have nega-
    51  tively affected the mortgagor's ability to obtain meaningful  employment
    52  or  earn  income  or have     significantly    reduced   the mortgagor's
    53  household income  or  significantly increased the mortgagor's  expenses;
    54  or
    55    (vi) One or more of the mortgagor's tenants has defaulted on a signif-
    56  icant amount of their rent payments since March 1, 2020.

        S. 1                               29
 
     1    §  3.  The foreclosing party shall include a "Hardship Declaration" in
     2  14-point type, with every notice provided to  a  mortgagor  pursuant  to
     3  sections 1303 and 1304 of the real property actions and proceedings law.
     4  Such  notice  shall also include a mailing address, telephone number and
     5  active  email  address  the mortgagor can use to contact the foreclosing
     6  party and return the hardship declaration.
     7    § 4. No court shall accept for filing any action to foreclose a  mort-
     8  gage  unless  the foreclosing party or an agent of the foreclosing party
     9  files an affidavit, under penalty of perjury:
    10    (i) of service demonstrating  the  manner  in  which  the  foreclosing
    11  party's  agent  served a copy of the hardship declaration in English and
    12  the mortgagor's primary  language,  if  other  than  English,  with  the
    13  notice,  if any, provided to the mortgagor pursuant to sections 1303 and
    14  1304 of the real property actions and proceedings law, and
    15    (ii) a. attesting that at the time of filing, neither the  foreclosing
    16  party  nor  any  agent  of the foreclosing party has received a hardship
    17  declaration from the mortgagor; or
    18    b. attesting that at the time of filing, the foreclosing party  or  an
    19  agent  of the foreclosing party has received a hardship declaration from
    20  the mortgagor, but the foreclosing party believes in good faith that the
    21  hardship certified in the hardship declaration does not exist.
    22    At the earliest possible opportunity, the court shall  seek  confirma-
    23  tion  on the record or in writing that the mortgagor has received a copy
    24  of the hardship declaration and whether the mortgagor has  returned  the
    25  hardship  declaration  to the foreclosing party or an agent of the fore-
    26  closing party.  If the court determines a mortgagor has not  received  a
    27  hardship  declaration,  then  the  court shall stay the proceeding for a
    28  reasonable period of time, which shall be no less than ten business days
    29  or any longer period provided by law, to ensure the  mortgagor  received
    30  and fully considered whether to submit the hardship declaration.
    31    § 5. In any action to foreclose a mortgage in which a judgment of sale
    32  has not been issued, including actions filed on or before March 7, 2020,
    33  if  the  mortgagor  provides  a  hardship declaration to the foreclosing
    34  party, the court, or an agent of the foreclosing party or the court, the
    35  proceeding shall be stayed until at least  January  15,  2022.  If  such
    36  hardship  declaration  is  provided to the foreclosing party or agent of
    37  the foreclosing party, such foreclosing party or  agent  shall  promptly
    38  file  it  with the court, advising the court in writing the index number
    39  of all relevant cases.
    40    § 6. In any action to foreclose a mortgage in which a judgment of sale
    41  has been issued prior to the effective date of this act but has not  yet
    42  been  executed  as  of the effective date of this act, including actions
    43  filed on or before March 7, 2020, the court shall stay the execution  of
    44  the  judgment at least until the court has held a status conference with
    45  the parties. In any action to foreclose a  mortgage,  if  the  mortgagor
    46  provides  a hardship declaration to the foreclosing party, the court, or
    47  an agent of the foreclosing party or the court, prior to  the  execution
    48  of  the  judgment,  the execution shall be stayed until at least January
    49  15, 2022. If such hardship declaration is provided  to  the  foreclosing
    50  party or agent of the foreclosing party, such foreclosing party or agent
    51  shall promptly file it with the court, advising the court in writing the
    52  index number of all relevant cases.
    53    §  7.  The office of court administration shall translate the hardship
    54  declaration, as defined in section one of this act, into Spanish and the
    55  six most common languages in the city of New York,  after  Spanish,  and
    56  shall  post  and maintain such translations and an English language copy

        S. 1                               30
 
     1  of the hardship declaration on the  website  of  such  office  beginning
     2  within fifteen days of the effective date of this act.
     3    §  8.   Unless a court determines a mortgagor's hardship claim invalid
     4  pursuant to section nine of  this  act,  a  hardship  declaration  shall
     5  create  a  rebuttable presumption that the mortgagor is suffering finan-
     6  cial hardship, in any judicial or administrative proceeding that may  be
     7  brought,  for  the purposes of establishing a defense under an executive
     8  order of the governor or any other local or state law,  order  or  regu-
     9  lation  restricting  actions to foreclose a mortgage against a mortgagor
    10  suffering from a financial  hardship  during  or  due  to  the  COVID-19
    11  pandemic  provided  that the absence of a hardship declaration shall not
    12  create a presumption that a financial hardship is not present.
    13    § 9. (a) Notwithstanding any other provision of this act, a stay under
    14  this part shall be granted or  continued  unless  the  court  finds  the
    15  defendant's  hardship  claim invalid.  A motion may be made by the fore-
    16  closing party, attesting a good faith belief that the defendant has  not
    17  experienced  a  hardship,  with  notice  to the defendant, and the court
    18  shall grant a hearing to determine whether to find the defendant's hard-
    19  ship claim invalid.
    20    (b)  After any hearing, if the court finds  the  defendant's  hardship
    21  claim valid, the court shall grant a stay or continue a stay pursuant to
    22  this act.
    23    (c) After a hearing, if the court finds the defendant's hardship claim
    24  invalid, the action shall continue to a determination on the merits.
    25    §  10.  This  act shall take effect immediately and sections one, two,
    26  three, four, five, six, seven and nine of this act shall expire  January
    27  15, 2022.
 
    28                                  SUBPART C
 
    29    Section  1.  Application.  This act shall apply to any action to fore-
    30  close on delinquent taxes or sell a tax  lien  relating  to  residential
    31  real  property,  provided  the  owner or mortgagor of such property is a
    32  natural person, regardless of how title is held, and owns ten  or  fewer
    33  dwelling units whether directly or indirectly. The ten or fewer dwelling
    34  units  may be in more than one property or building as long as the total
    35  aggregate number of ten units includes  the  primary  residence  of  the
    36  natural  person  requesting  such  relief  and  the  remaining units are
    37  currently occupied by a tenant or are available for rent.
    38    (a) For purposes of this act, real property shall include shares in  a
    39  residential cooperative.
    40    (b) For purposes of this act, real property shall not include property
    41  that  is  vacant  and  abandoned, as defined in subdivision 2 of section
    42  1309 of the real property actions and proceedings law, which was  listed
    43  on  the  statewide vacant and abandoned property electronic registry, as
    44  defined in section 1310 of the real  property  actions  and  proceedings
    45  law, prior to March 7, 2020 and that remains on such registry.
    46    §  2.  Definitions.  For  purposes of this act: 1. "Tax lien" means an
    47  unpaid tax, special ad valorem levy, special assessment or other  charge
    48  imposed upon real property by or on behalf of a municipal corporation or
    49  special  district  or  other public or private entity which is an encum-
    50  brance on real property, whether or not evidenced by a  written  instru-
    51  ment.
    52    2.  "Tax  foreclosure  and tax lien sale" shall mean any such tax lien
    53  sale or tax foreclosure pursuant to article 11 of the real property  tax

        S. 1                               31
 
     1  law,  or  any general, special or local law related to real property tax
     2  lien sales or real property tax foreclosures.
     3    3.  "Hardship  Declaration"  means:  a.  a  hardship declaration filed
     4  pursuant to chapter 381 of the laws of 2020 or chapter 104 of  the  laws
     5  of 2021; or
     6    b. the following statement, or a substantially equivalent statement in
     7  the  owner's  primary language, in 14-point type, whether in physical or
     8  electronic written form:
     9    "OWNER DECLARATION OF COVID-19-RELATED HARDSHIP
    10    I am the owner of the property at (address).    Including  my  primary
    11  residence,  I own, whether directly or indirectly, ten or fewer residen-
    12  tial dwelling units.  I am experiencing financial  hardship,  and  I  am
    13  unable to pay my full tax bill because of one or more of the following:
    14    1. Significant loss of household income during the COVID-19 pandemic.
    15    2.  Increase in necessary out-of-pocket expenses related to performing
    16  essential work or related to health impacts during the COVID-19  pandem-
    17  ic.
    18    3.  Childcare  responsibilities  or  responsibilities  to  care for an
    19  elderly, disabled, or sick family member during  the  COVID-19  pandemic
    20  have  negatively  affected  my  ability  or the ability of someone in my
    21  household to obtain meaningful employment or earn income or increased my
    22  necessary out-of-pocket expenses.
    23    4. Moving expenses and difficulty I have securing alternative  housing
    24  make  it  a  hardship for me to relocate to another residence during the
    25  COVID-19 pandemic.
    26    5. Other circumstances related to the COVID-19 pandemic have negative-
    27  ly affected my ability to obtain meaningful employment or earn income or
    28  have  significantly  reduced  my  household  income   or   significantly
    29  increased my expenses.
    30    6.  One or more of my tenants has defaulted on a significant amount of
    31  their rent payments since March 1, 2020.
    32    To the extent that I have  lost  household  income  or  had  increased
    33  expenses,  any  public  assistance,  including  unemployment  insurance,
    34  pandemic unemployment assistance, disability insurance, or  paid  family
    35  leave,  that  I  have  received since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic
    36  does not fully make up for my loss  of  household  income  or  increased
    37  expenses.
    38    I  understand  that  lawful fees, penalties or interest for not having
    39  paid my taxes in full may still be charged or collected and  may  result
    40  in a foreclosure action against me on or after January 15, 2022, if I do
    41  not fully repay any missed or partial payments and fees.
    42  Signed:
    43  Printed Name:
    44  Date Signed:
    45  NOTICE:  You  are signing and submitting this form under penalty of law.
    46  That means it is against the law to make a statement on this  form  that
    47  you know is false."
    48    4.  "Hardship"  means  an  owner  is unable to pay their full tax bill
    49  because of one or more of the following reasons and any  public  assist-
    50  ance,  including  unemployment  insurance, pandemic unemployment assist-
    51  ance, disability insurance, or paid family leave,  that  the  owner  has
    52  received since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic does not fully make up
    53  for their loss of household income or increased expenses:
    54    (i) Significant loss of household income during the COVID-19 pandemic;
    55  or

        S. 1                               32
 
     1    (ii) Increase in necessary out-of-pocket expenses related to  perform-
     2  ing  essential    work  or related to health impacts during the COVID-19
     3  pandemic; or
     4    (iii)  Childcare responsibilities  or  responsibilities  to  care  for
     5  an elderly,   disabled,   or   sick family member  during  the  COVID-19
     6  pandemic  negatively  affected  the  owner's ability or the  ability  of
     7  someone   in their household to obtain  meaningful  employment  or  earn
     8  income or increased their necessary out-of-pocket expenses; or
     9    (iv) Moving expenses and difficulty the owner has securing alternative
    10  housing  make  it  a hardship for the owner to relocate to another resi-
    11  dence  during  the COVID-19 pandemic; or
    12    (v) Other circumstances related to the COVID-19  pandemic  have  nega-
    13  tively  affected  the owner's ability to obtain meaningful employment or
    14  earn income or have   significantly    reduced  the owner's    household
    15  income  or significantly increased the owner's expenses; or
    16    (vi) One or more of the owner's tenants has defaulted on a significant
    17  amount of their rent payments since March 1, 2020.
    18    §  3.  1. A real property owner may submit a "Hardship Declaration" to
    19  any village, town, city, school district, county,  or  other  entity  or
    20  person which conducts tax foreclosures or tax lien sales.
    21    2.  At  least  thirty  days prior to the date on which a sale of a tax
    22  lien is scheduled to occur, or upon the filing of a petition of foreclo-
    23  sure of a tax lien, the enforcing officer  or  other  person  or  entity
    24  conducting  such tax lien sale or tax foreclosure shall notify the owner
    25  of the affected property of such owner's rights under this act and shall
    26  notify the owner that a copy of the hardship declaration can be accessed
    27  on the New York State Department of Tax and Finance's website  and  also
    28  provide  a  link to such declaration form. For the purposes of this act,
    29  "enforcing officer" shall have the same meaning as defined  in  subdivi-
    30  sion  3 of section 1102 of the real property tax law. The New York State
    31  Department of Tax and Finance shall  publish  a  copy  of  the  hardship
    32  declaration on its website.
    33    3.  The  submission  of  such  a  declaration, unless withdrawn by the
    34  owner, shall act as a temporary stay  applicable  to  all  entities  and
    35  persons  of  all  such  tax  lien  sales and tax foreclosure actions and
    36  proceedings  against  such  owner  for  such  property  that  have  been
    37  commenced or could have been commenced before January 15, 2022.
    38    4.  While  such stay is in effect, no other action or proceeding shall
    39  be commenced to recover any part of such delinquent taxes.
    40    5. Any applicable statutes of limitation for the commencement  of  any
    41  action  or  proceeding  to  sell  a  tax lien or foreclose a tax lien is
    42  tolled until such stay has expired. The obligation to pay the balance of
    43  such delinquent taxes is not rendered invalid, released or  extinguished
    44  by such stay.
    45    6.  Unless  a  court  determines  an owner's claim of hardship invalid
    46  pursuant to subdivision 7 of this section, a hardship declaration  shall
    47  create a rebuttable presumption that the owner is experiencing financial
    48  hardship,  in  any  judicial  or  administrative  proceeding that may be
    49  brought, for the purposes of establishing a defense under  an  executive
    50  order  of  the  governor or any other local or state law, order or regu-
    51  lation restricting actions to  sell a tax lien or foreclose  a tax  lien
    52  against  an  owner suffering from a financial hardship during or due  to
    53  the  COVID-19  pandemic, provided that the absence of a hardship  decla-
    54  ration  shall  not create a presumption that a financial hardship is not
    55  present.

        S. 1                               33
 
     1    7. (a) Notwithstanding any other provision of this act, a  stay  under
     2  this  part  shall  be  granted  or  continued unless the court finds the
     3  defendant's hardship claim invalid.  A motion may be made by  the  fore-
     4  closing  party,  if such party is not a governmental entity, attesting a
     5  good  faith  belief  that  the defendant has not experienced a hardship,
     6  with notice to the defendant, and the court shall  grant  a  hearing  to
     7  determine whether to find the defendant's hardship claim invalid.
     8    (b)    After  any hearing, if the court finds the defendant's hardship
     9  claim valid, the court shall grant a stay or continue a stay pursuant to
    10  this act.
    11    (c) After a hearing, if the court finds the defendant's hardship claim
    12  invalid, the proceedings  shall  continue  to  a  determination  on  the
    13  merits.
    14    §  4.  This act shall take effect immediately and sections one and two
    15  and subdivisions one, two, three, four, five and seven of section  three
    16  shall expire January 15, 2022.
 
    17                                  SUBPART D
 
    18    Section  1.  Application. 1. This act shall apply to an owner of resi-
    19  dential real property, provided the owner or mortgagor of such  property
    20  is  a  natural  person, regardless of how title is held, and owns ten or
    21  fewer dwelling units whether directly or indirectly. The  ten  or  fewer
    22  dwelling  units  may be in more than one property or building as long as
    23  the total aggregate number of ten units includes the  primary  residence
    24  of the natural person requesting such relief and the remaining units are
    25  currently occupied by a tenant or are available for rent.
    26    (a)  For purposes of this act, real property shall include shares in a
    27  residential cooperative.
    28    (b) For purposes of this act, real property shall not include property
    29  that is vacant and abandoned, as defined in  subdivision  2  of  section
    30  1309  of the real property actions and proceedings law, which was listed
    31  on the statewide vacant and abandoned property electronic  registry,  as
    32  defined  in  section  1310  of the real property actions and proceedings
    33  law, prior to March 7, 2020 and that remains on such registry.
    34    2. Hardship declaration. For purposes of this act, "hardship  declara-
    35  tion"  shall  mean:  a. a hardship declaration filed pursuant to chapter
    36  381 of the laws of 2020 or chapter 104 of the laws of 2021; or
    37    b. the following statement, or a substantially equivalent statement in
    38  the owner or mortgagor's primary language, in 14-point type, whether  in
    39  physical  or  electronic  written  form, and the department of financial
    40  services shall publish  a  copy  of  the  hardship  declaration  on  its
    41  website:
    42    "NOTICE  TO  OWNER/MORTGAGOR: If you have lost income or had increased
    43  costs due to the COVID-19 pandemic, and you sign and deliver this  hard-
    44  ship  declaration  form  to  your  lending  institution,  you  cannot be
    45  discriminated against in the determination of whether credit  should  be
    46  extended  or  reported  negatively to a credit reporting agency until at
    47  least January 15, 2022.
    48    If a lending institution provided you  with  this  form,  the  lending
    49  institution  must  also  provide  you  with a mailing address and e-mail
    50  address to which you can return this form. You should  keep  a  copy  or
    51  picture of the signed form for your records.
    52    OWNER/MORTGAGOR DECLARATION OF COVID-19-RELATED HARDSHIP
    53    I  am  the  OWNER/MORTGAGOR  of  the  property at (address of dwelling
    54  unit).  Including my primary residence, I own, whether directly or indi-

        S. 1                               34
 
     1  rectly, ten or fewer residential dwelling  units.    I  am  experiencing
     2  financial  hardship,  and I am unable to pay my mortgage in full because
     3  of one or more of the following:
     4    1. Significant loss of household income during the COVID-19 pandemic.
     5    2.  Increase in necessary out-of-pocket expenses related to performing
     6  essential work or related to health impacts during the COVID-19  pandem-
     7  ic.
     8    3.  Childcare  responsibilities  or  responsibilities  to  care for an
     9  elderly, disabled, or sick family member during  the  COVID-19  pandemic
    10  have  negatively  affected  my  ability  or the ability of someone in my
    11  household to obtain meaningful employment or earn income or increased my
    12  necessary out-of-pocket expenses.
    13    4. Moving expenses and difficulty I have securing alternative  housing
    14  make  it  a  hardship for me to relocate to another residence during the
    15  COVID-19 pandemic.
    16    5. Other circumstances related to the COVID-19 pandemic have negative-
    17  ly affected my ability to obtain meaningful employment or earn income or
    18  have  significantly  reduced  my  household  income   or   significantly
    19  increased my expenses.
    20    6.  One or more of my tenants has defaulted on a significant amount of
    21  their rent payments since March 1, 2020.
    22    To the extent that I have  lost  household  income  or  had  increased
    23  expenses,  any  public  assistance,  including  unemployment  insurance,
    24  pandemic unemployment assistance, disability insurance, or  paid  family
    25  leave,  that  I  have  received since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic
    26  does not fully make up for my loss  of  household  income  or  increased
    27  expenses.
    28  Signed:
    29  Printed Name:
    30  Date Signed:
    31  NOTICE:  You  are signing and submitting this form under penalty of law.
    32  That means it is against the law to make a statement on this  form  that
    33  you know is false."
    34    3.  Discrimination in credit decisions. Notwithstanding any law to the
    35  contrary, lending institutions shall not discriminate  in  the  determi-
    36  nation  of whether credit should be extended to any owner of residential
    37  real property as defined in subdivision one of this section because,  as
    38  provided for in this act, such owner has been granted a stay of mortgage
    39  foreclosure  proceedings,  tax  foreclosure  proceedings  or of tax lien
    40  sales, or that an owner of  residential  real  property  as  defined  in
    41  subdivision  one of this section is currently in arrears and has filed a
    42  hardship declaration with such lender.
    43    4. Prohibition on negative credit reporting. Notwithstanding  any  law
    44  to  the contrary, as provided for in this act, the granting of a stay of
    45  mortgage foreclosure proceedings, tax  foreclosure  proceedings  or  tax
    46  lien  sales, or that an owner of residential real property as defined in
    47  subdivision one of this section is currently in arrears and has filed  a
    48  hardship  declaration with their lender shall not be negatively reported
    49  to any credit reporting agency.
    50    § 2. This act take effect immediately and  shall  expire  January  15,
    51  2022.
    52    § 2. Severability clause. If any clause, sentence, paragraph, subdivi-
    53  sion,  section,  subpart  or  part  of this act shall be adjudged by any
    54  court of competent jurisdiction to be invalid, such judgment  shall  not
    55  affect,  impair,  or  invalidate  the  remainder  thereof,  but shall be
    56  confined in its operation to the clause, sentence,  paragraph,  subdivi-

        S. 1                               35
 
     1  sion,  section, subpart or part thereof directly involved in the contro-
     2  versy in which such judgment shall have  been  rendered.  It  is  hereby
     3  declared  to  be  the intent of the legislature that this act would have
     4  been enacted even if such invalid provisions had not been included here-
     5  in.
     6    §  3.  This  act shall take effect immediately provided, however, that
     7  the applicable effective date of Subparts A through D of this act  shall
     8  be as specifically set forth in the last section of such Subparts.
 
     9                                   PART D

    10    Section  1.  Section 1 of chapter 127 of the laws of 2020, relating to
    11  prohibiting the eviction of residential tenants who have suffered finan-
    12  cial hardship during the COVID-19 covered period, is amended to read  as
    13  follows:
    14    Section  1.  For  the  purposes of this act, "COVID-19 covered period"
    15  means March 7, 2020 until [the date on which none of the provisions that
    16  closed or otherwise restricted public or private businesses or places of
    17  public accommodation, or required postponement or  cancellation  of  all
    18  non-essential  gatherings  of  individuals of any size for any reason in
    19  Executive Orders 202.3,  202.4,  202.5,  202.6,  202.7,  202.8,  202.10,
    20  202.11,  202.13  or  202.14,  as extended by Executive Orders 202.28 and
    21  202.31 and as further extended by any future Executive Order, issued  in
    22  response to the COVID-19 pandemic continue to apply in the county of the
    23  tenant's or lawful occupant's residence] January 15, 2022.
    24    § 2. Paragraph (b) of subdivision 2 of section 2 of chapter 127 of the
    25  laws  of  2020,  relating  to  prohibiting  the  eviction of residential
    26  tenants who have suffered financial hardship during the COVID-19 covered
    27  period, is amended to read as follows:
    28    (b) In determining whether a tenant  or  lawful  occupant  suffered  a
    29  financial  hardship  during the COVID-19 covered period, the court shall
    30  consider, among other relevant factors:
    31    (i) the tenant's or lawful occupant's income  prior  to  the  COVID-19
    32  covered period;
    33    (ii)  the  tenant's  or  lawful  occupant's income during the COVID-19
    34  covered period;
    35    (iii) the tenant's or lawful occupant's liquid assets; and
    36    (iv) the tenant's or lawful occupant's eligibility for and receipt  of
    37  cash assistance, supplemental nutrition assistance program, supplemental
    38  security  income, the New York State disability program, the home energy
    39  assistance program, [or] unemployment insurance or benefits under  state
    40  or federal law, or the emergency rental assistance program.
    41    §  3.  This  act  shall take effect immediately and shall be deemed to
    42  have been in full force and effect on and after March 7, 2020.
 
    43                                   PART E
 
    44    Section 1. Notwithstanding the provisions of article 7 of  the  public
    45  officers law to the contrary, any state agency, department, corporation,
    46  office,  authority,  board,  or  commission, as well as any local public
    47  body, or public corporation as defined in  section  66  of  the  general
    48  construction law, or political subdivisions as defined in section 100 of
    49  the general municipal law, or a committee or subcommittee or other simi-
    50  lar  body  of  such  entity,  shall  be authorized to meet and take such
    51  action authorized by law without permitting in public  in-person  access
    52  to  meetings  and authorize such meetings to be held remotely by confer-

        S. 1                               36
 
     1  ence call or similar service, provided that the public has  the  ability
     2  to view or listen to such proceeding and that such meetings are recorded
     3  and  later  transcribed.  "Local  public body" shall mean any entity for
     4  which a quorum is required in order to conduct public business and which
     5  consists  of two or more members, performing a governmental function for
     6  an entity limited in the  execution  of  its  official  functions  to  a
     7  portion  only  of the state, or a political subdivision of the state, or
     8  for an agency or department thereof.
     9    § 2. This act shall take effect immediately and shall  expire  and  be
    10  deemed repealed January 15, 2022.
    11    § 3. Severability clause. If any clause, sentence, paragraph, subdivi-
    12  sion,  section  or  part  of  this act shall be adjudged by any court of
    13  competent jurisdiction to be invalid, such judgment  shall  not  affect,
    14  impair,  or  invalidate  the remainder thereof, but shall be confined in
    15  its operation to the clause, sentence, paragraph,  subdivision,  section
    16  or part thereof directly involved in the controversy in which such judg-
    17  ment shall have been rendered. It is hereby declared to be the intent of
    18  the  legislature  that  this  act  would  have been enacted even if such
    19  invalid provisions had not been included herein.
    20    § 4. This act shall take effect immediately  provided,  however,  that
    21  the  applicable effective date of Parts A through E of this act shall be
    22  as specifically set forth in the last section of such Parts.
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