CHICAGO (CBS) — People facing eviction from their homes have been getting a small break for the holidays. Sheriff’s officials in Cook and Lake counties have placed an annual moratorium on evictions until early January.

Cook County’s eviction moratorium lasts from Dec. 18 until Jan. 5, by court order. The county also does not perform evictions when the temperature reaches 15 degrees or colder, or when severe weather conditions make it dangerous to kick people out of their homes.

In Lake County, evictions also are on hold until Jan. 5.

“Times are tough, and to … take people out of their dwelling at this time of year just compounds their misery, and it just is something that can wait,” Sheriff Mark Curran said.

Curran said it’s tough for sheriff’s deputies to carry out evictions during the holidays, especially when there are children in the home.

“We’re called to enforce the court orders [on evictions] and we’ll do so, but we can prioritize, and this doesn’t have to be something that is done over the holiday,” he said.