State Senator Collins’ tenant protections signed into law

CHICAGO, IL — In a ceremony at the home of a neighborhood advocate, legislation Illinois State Senator Jacqueline Y. Collins (D-Chicago 16th) sponsored to protect tenants affected by foreclosure became law.

“Tenants should not suffer for the financial troubles of their landlords,” Collins said. “This legislation extends our foreclosure relief efforts to renters, who make up 40 percent of households affected by foreclosure.”

The law was signed at the 16th District home of Charles Brown, a retired Chicago police officer who joined the advocacy group Action Now and worked for the passage of Senate Bill 56 after watching families move out of his neighborhood (due to foreclosure) and crime move in.

Currently, tenants living in foreclosed properties are protected under federal law, but those protections are set to sunset in 2014.

Under the new state law, an owner who acquires a property in a foreclosure proceeding can evict a tenant only at the end of the lease or, if there is no lease, with 90 days’ notice. If the new owner intends to use the property as his or her primary residence, he or she may terminate the lease but must still give 90 days’ notice. A bank foreclosing on a rental property also must inform tenants of where they should pay their rent.