DCA Issues Tenant’s Foreclosure Rights Bulletin
Bulletin States Tenants Can’t Be Evicted Without Good Cause

TRENTON – In an effort to further assist New Jersey residents during the current foreclosure crisis, the Department of Community Affairs’ (DCA) Division of Codes and Standards has made available on their website a Tenant’s Foreclosure Rights Bulletin. The bulletin can be viewed at http://www.nj.gov/dca/codes/lt/pdf/f_bulletin.pdf.

“Governor Corzine is committed to helping residents hard hit during this foreclosure crisis and this bulletin is just one of many ways in which we are assisting,” said DCA Commissioner Joseph Doria. “Many properties are facing foreclosure in New Jersey and some landlords are evicting tenants who are not aware of their rights. We simply cannot allow this to continue.”

Under state law, a landlord must have good grounds to evict a tenant and only a judge can order a legal eviction. Landlords cannot remove a tenant’s personal property from the premises, shut off utilities, padlock a tenant’s door, or change a tenant’s locks in an attempt to force a tenant to move. Landlords are also prohibited from imposing unreasonable rent increases on a tenant to get a tenant to move. Tenants should contact the local rent control board in the municipality were the property is located to file a complaint.

The Division of Codes and Standards operates the state’s landlord/tenant information service, which provides information on the rights and responsibilities of landlords and tenants in New Jersey. Though the Division does not provide legal advice or representation, it can direct the public to available resources throughout the state and provide copies of pertinent laws, bulletins and court cases.

The Department of the Public Advocate, working in cooperation with the New Jersey Department of Banking and Insurance, has also launched an education campaign to inform tenants of their rights and to make sure that the professionals dealing with this issue, from local police to real estate professionals to attorneys, do not require tenants to leave properties they are lawfully occupying. The Public Advocate, Office of Citizen Relations, is available to handle tenants concerns at 609-826-5070.

For further landlord-tenant information, please log on to http://www.nj.gov/dca/codes/ or call the Division of Codes and Standards at (609) 633-6606.