Aimed at protecting tenants who await Emergency Rental Assistance money, the State Supreme Court approved a Bucks County request to pause these eviction cases for up to 60 days.

This will likely open the door for courts in other counties across the state to also pause evictions for tenants who have applied for, but have not yet received, funding to pay landlords backrent.

For now, the ruling may largely prove unnecessary, as the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention again placed a 60-day moratorium on evictions Tuesday in counties with significant COVID cases, which includes Philadelphia, Bucks, Montgomery, and Delaware Counties.

In Philadelphia, landlords must apply for rental assistance and complete mediation before filing an eviction. The problem is that landlords must get the approval of tenants in order to apply for funding and not all tenants are cooperating.

The available money to help tenants and landlords is moving at a trickle. Pennsylvania had more than $133 million dollars available at the end of June, but less than 20% had been spent.

Landlords who are owed backrent because of their tenants’ COVID-related hardships are encouraged to immediately apply for Emergency Rental Assistance at