‘I sleep better at night’: Action 9 helps Charlotte man avoid eviction

CHARLOTTE, N.C. — Demaris Williams is on disability. Like many federal agencies during the coronavirus pandemic, Social Security had a backlog.

Williams told Action 9's Jason Stoogenke that Social Security owed him money, money he needed for rent -- about $4,500.

Williams said his landlord planned to evict him. In fact, it was so likely, Williams had already called Legal Aid for help.

“It’s rough, it’s rough,” he said. “Thankfully, I’ve got family to help me out a little bit and everything, but it’s putting more stress on them.”

Williams didn’t ask, but Action 9 offered to help anyway. Stoogenke got in touch with someone at Social Security who promised to look into Williams’ case right away. Williams said not even two weeks later, Social Security sent him the money.

“I feel a lot better,” he told Action 9. “I sleep better at night.”

Here’s what you should know about evictions:

If your landlord has a federally-backed mortgage, like Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac, and wants to evict you for not paying rent, he or she cannot do so yet. They have to wait until July 27 to do so.

You probably don’t know if your landlord has one of those mortgages, but if he or she tries to evict you before July 27, you should bring it up in court.

If you owed rent between May 30 and June 20, your landlord has to give you at least six months to pay it because Gov. Roy Cooper’s executive order covers that time period. Cooper has not extended this executive order at this time.

In Mecklenburg County, the court is sending landlords and tenants a flyer about a mediation program with nonprofits that help to pay rent.