Eviction file photo

(The Center Square) – Legislation prohibiting Virginia landlords from denying tenant applicants because they accrued bad credit or were evicted for the inability to pay rent during the COVID-19 pandemic has been sent back to the General Assembly with a technical amendment from Gov. Ralph Northam. 

The amendment does not change the substance of the bill, but it provides clarification. Lawmakers are expected to approve the amendment.

House Bill 5106 would apply to tenants who received bad credit or were evicted between March 12 and 30 days after the governor’s state of emergency ends. It would apply only to landlords who own more than four dwelling units or who have at least a 10% interest in more than four dwelling units.

The bill was sponsored by Del. Joshua Cole, D-Fredericksburg.

Northam also proposed an amendment to a bill last month that would require landlords to provide a payment plan before they can evict tenants. This bill has the same exemption for smaller landlords.

Staff Reporter

Tyler Arnold reports on Virginia and West Virginia for The Center Square. He previously worked for the Cause of Action Institute and has been published in Business Insider, USA TODAY College, National Review Online and the Washington Free Beacon.