In a unanimous ruling, a three-judge panel of the Cincinnati-based 6th Circuit Court of Appeals agreed with a lower court that the agency had overreached with its eviction moratorium, which is set to expire at the end of July.
The CDC order, enacted in September 2020 and subsequently extended by Congress and President Biden, aims to protect tenants who would face overcrowded conditions if evicted.
But in its Friday ruling, the court rejected the CDC’s two-pronged argument that the eviction freeze was within its authority, or that Congress authorized the measure after the fact as part of its COVID-19 relief legislation.
It was not immediately clear what practical impact would result from the ruling, which affirmed a March decision by a federal judge in Tennessee in favor of a group of landlords. That lower court ruling, by U.S. District Judge Mark Norris, a Trump appointee, blocked enforcement of the eviction freeze throughout the Western District of Tennessee.