Legal Questions Answered by Mark Zinman, Zona Law

Q: I read your article last month about Governor Ducey’s Executive Order. I have a tenant who I haven’t heard from and who hasn’t paid the rent. Is it worth doing anything?

A: Assuming you are not governed by the C.A.R.E.S. Act (see other article in newsletter), then you should proceed with the eviction all the way through. Under Governor Ducey’s executive order, you can pursue an eviction and a resident may get a temporary delay if they are negatively impacted by COVID-19. However, this is an affirmative defense that the resident has to bring forth to the constable, after judgment, when the writ is to be executed. If you have not heard from your resident, don’t simply stop all actions – you should proceed until you know they are protected by the executive order. Additionally, if you think they haven’t actually been affected by COVID-19, you may be able to get the court to compel the writ. Always proceed with your rights.