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Highlight Updates USDA Foreclosure Moratorium

Following the other federal agencies, on March 19, 2020, the USDA announced a foreclosure moratorium for its guaranteed and direct loans. After the expiration of the CARES Act, the USDA extended moratorium protection in line with the other federal agencies. Its January 21, 2021 guidance states, “[e]ffective January 20, 2021, with the exception of vacant or abandoned dwellings, foreclosures and related evictions for borrowers with USDA single family housing Direct and Guaranteed loans are suspended through March 31, 2021.”416 The agency’s June 24, 2021, press release extended the moratorium to July 31, 2021, following the Biden Administration’s announcement on preventing COVID-19 foreclosures.417 It’s important to note that the USDA’s announcement lacks detail regarding initiation of new cases and moving for judgment in pending cases; however, advocates should point to other agency guidance to support a broader scope of protection.

USDA did not extend its foreclosure moratorium beyond July 31, 2021. It also did not adopt a bridge between the end of its moratorium and the effective date of the CFPB’s amendments to Regulation X related to COVID-19 hardships