As health emergency ends, so does France's extended winter ban on evictions

A homeless man outside the post office in Givors, near Lyon, France, 9 May 2020.
A homeless man outside the post office in Givors, near Lyon, France, 9 May 2020. JEAN-PHILIPPE KSIAZEK / AFP

France's temporary extension of a ban on winter evictions, put in place to protect those who could not pay their rent during the Covid-19 pandemic, has come to an end with the lifting of the national health emergency. Tenants who are unable to pay rent once again face eviction. The Mayor of Paris has requested a further extension.  


“In light of the exceptional context that we are going through, it would be unacceptable that families find themselves out on the street,” wrote Ian Brossat, Paris’ deputy mayor in charge of housing, emergency shelter and protection of refugees in a letter to new Housing Minister Emmanuelle Wargon.

In France, the winter suspension of evictions is a law that prevents tenants from being thrown out of their homes during the harshest months of the year if they cannot afford to pay rent. The period usually runs from November through to the end of March, but this year it was extended due to the health emergency.

Paris Mayor Anne Hidalgo had already announced that the winter amnesty would be extended until 31 October in the social housing sector, for tenants who had proven their "good faith". With the ban on winter evictions beginning 1 November, that would effectively extend the period until end March 2021.

The capital has also increased its solidarity fund to help tenants who are experiencing hard times.

Some 15,500 to 16,000 evictions are carried out each year in France, with the assistance of the police force, for those who cannot pay their rent.


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