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1,100 pending eviction cases in Palm Beach County, clerk's office says

'It's a bit chaotic at this point,' attorney says
eviction notice
Posted at 4:19 PM, Sep 09, 2021
and last updated 2021-09-09 18:31:37-04

WELLINGTON, Fla. — Two weeks ago the Supreme Court ruled an end to the eviction moratorium that was put in place when the pandemic began last year.

So what does this mean for tenants and for landlords?

MORE: County-by-county resources for renters facing eviction

"It's a feeling of desperation, honestly, and helplessness," said Nick Abrams of Wellington.

Abrams hit one of the lowest points in his life this past June.

Nick Abrams, Wellington resident who faced eviction
Nick Abrams shares the scary feeling he felt after losing his job during the pandemic.

"I ended up losing my job due to a company downsizing," Abrams said.

His livelihood and ability to support his three children quickly became a victim of the coronavirus pandemic.

His income came to a screeching halt.

"It was literally going to cause myself and my family to go homeless, and we wouldn't have been able to pay the bills," Abrams said.

Many families are now experiencing exactly what he went through, fearing they may be homeless after the Supreme Court ruled two weeks ago to end the CDC's pandemic eviction moratorium.

MORE: 'Flood' of evictions likely as moratoriums end

Zade Shamsi-Basha, a staff attorney with Florida Legal Rural Services, said everything changed overnight and expects evictions to increase significantly over the next six to 12 months.

"It's a bit chaotic at this point," Shamsi-Basha said. "There's definitely an uptick in evictions, new clients calling us and also clients who may be litigated over the summer and maybe had a judgment that was put on hold. Now they're calling us back asking us what's going to happen."

Zade Shamsi-Basha, a staff attorney with Florida Legal Rural Services
Zade Shamsi-Basha speaks about the programs available to tenants facing eviction.

According to the Palm Beach County Clerk's Office, there are more than 1,100 pending eviction cases in the county.

Since March, the Community Services Department said more than $26 million in payments have been sent to thousands of families, helping with rent and utility assistance.

"That program allows the landlords to get paid and the tenants who essentially stay in their homes," Shamsi-Basha said.

Abrams said he reached out to 20 different agencies looking for help, and Florida Legal Rural Services helped him get assistance to pay his bills.

"It was the difference between being homeless to now having a brighter outlook than I've ever had in my life, definitely," Abrams said.

Click here if you are having difficulty paying your rent due to the pandemic.