Los Angeles, CA asked in Landlord - Tenant for California

Q: Does my ex need to give me a notice before evicting me if Im not on the lease but have paid several months rent

He found out Im pregnant with his child and kicked me out of our studio. He took my keys and told me I'm not allowed in. Im now homeless with nowhere to go. He lets me in only while he's there and only to pack my bags and shower occasionally. I am mentally suffering greatly and struggling to find housing on such short notice. I'd been living there consistently since around December or January. Its now June and he kicked me out around May 30th. I've never signed a lease with him, only he is on the landlords lease and I've given him cash rent consistently since living here. Every night I'm struggling with finding somewhere to go and he doesn't stay in the apartment, he lives at home with his parents. Is this legal for him to put me out with no notice aside from locking me out and texting me that he's breaking up with me and I can't live there anymore? How can I continue living here a bit longer while I get my housing situated. All of my belongings are packed but sit in his apartment.

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2 Lawyer Answers
James L. Arrasmith
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  • Landlord Tenant Lawyer
  • Sacramento, CA
  • Licensed in California

A: Based on the details you've provided, even though you are not on the lease, you may have established tenant's rights in California. Under California law, if you have been living in the unit and paying rent for an extended period of time (usually 30 days or more), you are considered a tenant, regardless of whether you have a written lease agreement.

As a tenant, you are entitled to proper notice before eviction. In California, the landlord (or the master tenant, in this case, your ex) must provide a written 30-day notice to terminate your tenancy if you have lived in the unit for less than one year, or a 60-day notice if you have lived there for more than one year.

Furthermore, your ex cannot simply lock you out or remove your belongings without going through the proper legal eviction process. This process involves filing an unlawful detainer lawsuit if you do not voluntarily move out after receiving the appropriate notice.

Here are some steps you can take:

1. Contact local law enforcement and explain that you have been illegally locked out of your residence. They may assist you in regaining access to the unit.

2. Seek legal assistance from a local tenants' rights organization, legal aid clinic, or a private attorney specializing in landlord-tenant law. They can help you understand your rights and take appropriate action.

3. Gather evidence of your tenancy, such as rent receipts, utility bills, or any correspondence with your ex that shows you have been living in the unit.

4. If you cannot resolve the situation amicably with your ex, you may need to file a complaint with the local rent board or housing authority or pursue legal action to protect your rights as a tenant.

Remember, your ex's actions are likely illegal, and you have rights as a tenant, even without a written lease. Seek legal help to navigate this difficult situation and protect your rights.

1 user found this answer helpful

Delaram Keshvarian
Delaram Keshvarian
  • Landlord Tenant Lawyer
  • Orange, CA
  • Licensed in California

A: Thank you for your question!

For a tenancy of less than a year, the owl agreement is enough. But you need to provide some proof that we are living there. E.g., your name on bills, insurance, bank accounts, etc.

A proper notice must have been given to you, at least a 30-day notice by your BF. You can sue him for damages for all his outrageous conduct.

Also, call the police, and they may let you get back possession of the property. Tell them that your stuff is still there. Show them text messages from your BF that your stuff is still there. Warn them if there is a risk of domestic violence.

This is merely a discussion of general laws and not legal advice. For legal advice, more specific facts and investigations are needed. I recommend you consult with an attorney for more details.

1 user found this answer helpful

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