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Tenant protections regarding late fees

Wednesday, September 13, 2017

As of December 8, 2016, tenants in the District of Columbia have new protections regarding late fees. DC Law 21-172, the “Rental Housing Late Fee Fairness Amendment Act of 2016,” applies to all renters in the District. The law limits the amount of a late fee to no more than 5 percent of the full amount of rent due. Additionally, no late fee may be charged if the tenant has not been apprised of the late fee policy in writing, or if the tenant has paid the full amount of rent owed within 5 days of the due date. The law also prohibits (1) charging the tenant interest on a late fee; (2) imposing a late fee more than one time on the same late payment; (3) evicting a tenant solely because a late fee wasn’t paid; and (4) imposing a late fee for the portion of rent that a subsidy provider, rather than the tenant, is responsible for paying to the housing provider.

Click here to view the OTA’s “Late Fee” FAQ, which provides more details about the District’s late fee law.