This presentation will be an encore of the September 10 virtual meeting, with emphasis on how to complete intake to the individual claims council. We will describe the Individual Claims Council, a network of attorneys who are now collaborating and available to help landlords make individual claims against the Commonwealth, among other actions. We will describe the legal avenues being explored and how they will vary on a case-by-case basis. Court action besides suing the Commonwealth may be applied in any given situation. The goal is to avoid evicting anyone for nonpayment due to COVID, the goal is to force the state to cover arrears.
Please note this statement of guiding principles:
During the pandemic stay-at-home order, people needed to have a home to stay in. And during the medical and economic recovery that lies ahead, the Commonwealth's residents may need this housing for a long while yet to come. We have said from the beginning that this shared burden should be covered by the Commonwealth as a whole. No one should be evicted because of the pandemic or its aftermath. No housing provider should be asked to provide this needed public housing for free, to pay for upcoming months or years of repairs, real estate taxes, utilities, and mortgages without income.
The eviction moratorium is a Band-Aid, but stitches are required. We have developed and found funding for a Fair and Equal Housing Guarantee via Surety Bonds, but none in leadership have agreed to file it. We have asked the Governor not to extend the moratorium, but he has extended it to October and may extend it again after that. The amount of rent relief so far organized from federal, state, and municipal sources seems to be adding up to less than 10% of the funding that will be required by the time we get through this.
We now turn to the courts to make it clear, on a case-by-case basis, how much damage has been done. We are not launching an assault on the constitutionality of the moratorium. We have launched the Individual Claims Council to force payment by any and all means. The purpose is not to evict anyone. The purpose is to obtain the reasonable compensation to which we are now entitled as providers of public housing during a pandemic, and to eliminate our renter's unpaid obligations by court ordered public subsidy. Together the Commonwealth can keep us all housed.
This initiative will run in parallel to our continued advocacy for a Fair and Equal Housing Guarantee via Surety Bonds.
This part of the presentation will be given by Peter Vickery of Bobrowski & Vickery, LLC. Attorney Vickery practices law in Western Massachusetts where he focuses on landlord-tenant law (representing landlords in Housing Court) and discrimination defense (representing business owners in the Massachusetts Commission Against Discrimination). He graduated from Oxford University (Jesus College) with a BA in Modern History; obtained his Post-Graduate Diploma in Law from the University of the West of England in Bristol; his JD from Boston University School of Law; and his Masters in Public Policy & Administration from the University of Massachusetts, Amherst. Attorney Vickery served one term on the Governor's Council (the elected 8-member body that approves or vetoes the governor's choice of judges in Massachusetts) and on the State Ballot Law Commission. As Legislative Affairs Counsel for MassLandlords he drafts bills, bill summaries, and testimony in the area of housing law, and writes amicus briefs in cases that have strategic significance for rental-property owners.
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Wednesday, September 23rd
- 12:00pm Webinar Begins
- 1:00pm Webinar Ends (this webinar may run late to 1:15)
This webinar is free and open to the public. Registration is not required.
Webinar Details (hosted by Zoom)
We will share our video, audio, and computer screen and slides.
- You can chat questions. You will not be on video or audio.
Upon purchasing, you will be registered. Registrants will have full access to the webinar, including watching live or watching the recording any time after the webinar is posted.
Watch Live (on September 23, 2020 12:00 PM):
When: Sep 23, 2020 12:00 PM Eastern Time (US and Canada) Topic: Individual Claims Council Webinar Please click the link below to join the webinar: https://us02web.zoom.us/j/81182290756?pwd=VmJuVG9TMEsrMVpXMDRQL20yTnh1QT09 Passcode: 686837 Or iPhone one-tap : US: +16468769923,,81182290756#,,,,,,0#,,686837# or +13017158592,,81182290756#,,,,,,0#,,686837# Or Telephone: Dial(for higher quality, dial a number based on your current location): US: +1 646 876 9923 or +1 301 715 8592 or +1 312 626 6799 or +1 253 215 8782 or +1 346 248 7799 or +1 408 638 0968 or +1 669 900 6833 Webinar ID: 811 8229 0756 Passcode: 686837 International numbers available: https://us02web.zoom.us/u/kUxeiTZo1
Watch Recording (after September 25, 2020):Recording Link:
Webinar recordings are only available to confirmed registrants. To successfully access, make sure to Log In to your MassLandlords account.