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California Landlord - Tenant Questions & Answers
1 Answer | Asked in Real Estate Law and Landlord - Tenant for California on
Q: My property manager is trying to say that he can not accept a post dated check for a lease payment per B&P Code 10145.
James R. Dickinson
James R. Dickinson
answered on Sep 27, 2022

He doesn't need to accept a post-dated check. [I litigate cases. Anything posted here must not be construed as legal advice, nor as grounds for forming an attorney-client relationship. You should seek an attorney for formal legal advice and representation.]

1 Answer | Asked in Foreclosure and Landlord - Tenant for California on
Q: we ne help fast we dont have much time we got a unlawful detianer and they sold our house wrongfull i lived here for 20

we did to know how to fill and appial and sueing the bank

James L. Arrasmith
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answered on Sep 24, 2022

I highly advise that you speak to a qualified attorney as soon as possible to preserve your rights.

1 Answer | Asked in Landlord - Tenant for California on
Q: My rent is due on the 7th of the month. I offered my rent payment at the rental office and it was refused. The one ans

One answer I received is that I have "too many accounts" but they are low amounts and very few commercial accounts.

James L. Arrasmith
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answered on Sep 24, 2022

A landlord must accept a "tender" of a rent payment. If you offered the rent payment on time, but the landlord refused it, then that is the landlord's problem. You cannot be evicted for nonpayment of rent if you can show that you timely tendered (that is, offered) the rent payment in full.

1 Answer | Asked in Real Estate Law and Landlord - Tenant for California on
Q: After one year I raised my tenant’s rent the San Diego’s allowed 9% and continued with a month to month agreement.

It’s been 7 months after raising the rent and we’re on a month to month agreement. The tenant just informed me their girlfriend with her service dog has been living with them the last 3 months and would like to add them to the lease. Can I request to draw up a new lease with the new additional... Read more »

James L. Arrasmith
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answered on Sep 24, 2022

To play it safe, wait five more months until the 12-month period has elapsed so that you can raise the rent again.

1 Answer | Asked in Real Estate Law, Estate Planning and Landlord - Tenant for California on
Q: Can a verbal lease agreement stand for a non-spouse of 30 years after the partner dies?

A man made a verbal commitment to his non-martial spouse of 30 years to allow her to live in his home that is willed to his daughter until she dies, free of charge. The daughter verbally agreed to this agreement with her father, but is now reneging. She is requiring the surviving non-marital spouse... Read more »

James L. Arrasmith
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answered on Sep 24, 2022

A good theory of law that would likely apply is what is called "equitable estoppel."

"The venerable doctrine of equitable estoppel or estoppel in pais, which rests firmly upon a foundation of conscience and fair dealing, [fn. omitted] finds its classical statement in the...
Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Appeals / Appellate Law, Civil Litigation, Civil Rights and Landlord - Tenant for California on
Q: Can a county clerk give the papers I dropped off for filing to a judge who then renders a decision without my knowledge?

I was attempting to get my papers filed to then serve on the other side. I dropped them off for filing. I was put off 3 days with the reason "they are not ready". When I explained I just wanted to have them filed to then serve the other side, they had no explanation. They gave them to a... Read more »

James R. Dickinson
James R. Dickinson
answered on Sep 23, 2022

It depends what it is. If you filed for a restraining order, then many counties will set a hearing re: temporary orders. I'd say however the most common practice is for the court to make a determination regarding issuing temporary orders based solely on the papers. Speak with a local attorney... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Landlord - Tenant for California on
Q: How do I get wage garnishments stopped can't afford the 500.00 they take a month

Got evicted 4 years ago balance owed 4000.00 2 years ago they garnished my wages for approximately 3000.00 I changed jobs then this year they garnishing husband's wages as of today they have been paid 3200.00 they say balance owed is 2500.00 more we can't afford the 500.00 a month they... Read more »

James L. Arrasmith
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answered on Sep 23, 2022

You may be able to file for bankruptcy to get your debts discharged.

1 Answer | Asked in Landlord - Tenant for California on
Q: Landlord gave me a 3day pay or quit. Today is the last day. Can I get evicted even tho I have no place to go

I've been here since last year with my late husband. He passed away on June 27th of this year and now the land lord is stating that I am squatting and need to leave the premises by today. I have no place to go nor do I have a place to storage my belongings. I am unemployed, husband was... Read more »

James L. Arrasmith
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answered on Sep 20, 2022

Yes, you can be evicted even if you have no place to go. That said, at the eviction trial, you can ask the judge to stay your eviction due to your economic situation, and the judge has the authority to grant an additional of up to 40 days for you to stay in the premises while you find alternative... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Landlord - Tenant for California on
Q: If an agreement within a lease contradicts a right written in state law, which document declaration takes priority?

In other words, must you obey the state law above all else? Or must you obey what you signed and agreed to in a lease above all else?

James L. Arrasmith
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answered on Sep 20, 2022

The written law takes priority. The lease provision that contradicts state law is considered invalid and unenforceable due to it being violative of public policy.

1 Answer | Asked in Landlord - Tenant for California on
Q: Tenant is complaining about odor. I think it was odor from her clothes. What should I do?
James L. Arrasmith
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answered on Sep 20, 2022

As a landlord, you have a duty to maintain a habitable premiss. However, if the conditions of the premises are caused by the tenant, you can warn them that they are failing to fulfill the covenants of the premises--chiefly, to maintain a clean living space for themselves. If the odor is caused by... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Landlord - Tenant for California on
Q: My landlord provided a false denial letter supposedly from the relief program in order to be allowed to file an eviction

My landlord provided a false denial letter supposedly from the relief program in order to be allowed to file an eviction on me. Although He is now Evicting only for non payment of rent due after protections were over in March 2022. So from April to current. Even though I was protected since way... Read more »

James L. Arrasmith
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answered on Sep 20, 2022

If you can prove that the document was forged, you should be able to disqualify the landlord as a witness and attack his credibility.

1 Answer | Asked in Landlord - Tenant for California on
Q: At what point does an unlawful detainer go on your record? When it is filed or after the judgment is served? California

I was given a 30 day notice but still haven't been able to find a rental. If I get an unlawful detainer on my record I will not be able to rent anywhere. I'm thinking about moving out and living in my car until I find something just so I don't get this on my record. I don't want... Read more »

James L. Arrasmith
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answered on Sep 18, 2022

Both. When a UD case is filed, that goes on your record; same as when you have a judgment against you. However, the records are sealed for 40 days.

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning, Probate and Landlord - Tenant for California on
Q: Shouldn't my brother be paying me rent since he is continuing to live in the house after my mom's death?

He has been living off her pension for 12 years and took over her finances. We had a will done in 2006 which was 50/50 between my brother and I and in 2020 my brother had my mom do a new will giving him 60 and me 40 making him the executor and hid it from me for two years. He is selling and... Read more »

Julie King
Julie King
answered on Sep 18, 2022

Since your mom owned a home, I am going to assume the total value of all of your mother’s assets exceeds the probate limit. That means your brother or you MUST file a Petition in Probate Court in order to transfer title to the property from your mom to both of you, unless title to the home was in... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Landlord - Tenant for California on
Q: We had a tenant caused fire in oven. I have contacted insurance, and restorative service. What is my responsibility?

Tenant 1 pre-heated oven with a plastic cutting board. Did not smell the smoke or hear smoke alarm (said she doesn't smell well). Tenant 2 noticed and started yelling. Tenant 1 ran into the kitchen and her and friend took a hose to put out the fire. She also said that Tenant 2 left cutting... Read more »

James L. Arrasmith
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answered on Sep 16, 2022

Likely not if it was their fault. However, if they are dislocated and it is due to your negligence or fault, you would need to pay for their relocation.

1 Answer | Asked in Personal Injury and Landlord - Tenant for California on
Q: WHAT CAN A OWNER TO A APT COMPLEXBE LIABLE FOR .CAN THEY BE LIABLE FOR UNSAFE CONDITIONS .

WHERE I LIVE IS VERY UN SAFE I HAVE LIVED HERE FOR 2 YEARS AND IN THESE 2 YEARS I HAVE BEEN WITNESS TO MANY SCARY EVENTS. RIGHT OUTSIDE MY NEIGHBOR GOT SHOT 6 TIMES , A CAR WAS LIT ON FIRE AND I RETRIEVED ALL FIRE EXTIGUESHERS TO HELP TRY AND KEEP IT SO IT WOULD NOT SPREAD, WE HAD A KILLER ON THE... Read more »

James L. Arrasmith
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answered on Sep 16, 2022

A landlord owes an implied warranty of habitability to tenants of the premises. See Green v. Superior Court (1974).

1 Answer | Asked in Real Estate Law, Landlord - Tenant and Municipal Law for California on
Q: I moved in with my gf in July and started paying rent to her but I'm not on the lease, we broke up, can she evict me?

I moved in on July 1st, my ex-gf is the property manager of this building. I started paying her $1000 a month for rent which she accepted. Now we broke up and she wants to kick me out in 2 weeks, but got mad when I told her I've established that I am a tenant now since I've gotten mail... Read more »

James L. Arrasmith
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answered on Sep 10, 2022

Dragging you out of the building is illegal. She cannot resort to self-help.

She cannot evict you without proper notice, correct.

Feel free to contact me if you have any further questions.

1 Answer | Asked in Landlord - Tenant for California on
Q: Can a landlord in CA charge for a month the apartment was not available? Charge for July when 29th was move in

My son signed a 13 months lease but the apartment was not made available until 29 days into the first month. Landlord is still charging for that full month. I have not seen the contract, but would a landlord be able to put in the contract that the full month is owed without providing the apartment... Read more »

James L. Arrasmith
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answered on Sep 10, 2022

I would ask your landlord for an adjustment. You should not have had to pay for that full month. Did you see this in the contract before signing it?

1 Answer | Asked in Contracts and Landlord - Tenant for California on
Q: Breaking lease

I signed a lease for 15 months. The lease termination agreement read if I break lease due to reasons such as out of state job offer I need to pay 1 months rent as penalty. We are breaking the lease in 2 months because we bought a house. We gave the landlord 1 months notice. The landlord asked me to... Read more »

James L. Arrasmith
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answered on Sep 10, 2022

You should be able to get a recovery for the security deposit that was unlawfully withheld. A simple letter from an attorney sometimes works. If that doesn't work, a small claims lawsuit can give you a chance to get your deposit back. You may contact me if you have any further questions.

1 Answer | Asked in Landlord - Tenant for California on
Q: Can a tenant evict another tenant for nonpayment of rent.

As of 9/1/22 only my name is on the the rental agreement. I have not filed for divorce yet due to no financial help from my husband. He has not helped with rent or bills in the last seven months. He has a full-time job. We have a 9 year old and a child who will be 18 in October and two children... Read more »

James L. Arrasmith
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answered on Sep 10, 2022

No. The landlord would have to do that. However, you can sue a nonpaying tenant for monetary damages.

1 Answer | Asked in Landlord - Tenant for California on
Q: Is it illegal for my landlord to withhold rent and information from me

I was told (I have text messages) that who I thought was my landlord could refund me three days rent if I moved out of the unit before the end of the month because the new tenant was available to move in by that time. When I asked for the deposit and rent back after I vacated the unit she told me... Read more »

James L. Arrasmith
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answered on Sep 10, 2022

They have to give you an itemized list of the damages and the repair costs. If you file a lawsuit, you can get this information through discovery.

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