The California eviction process may be relatively easy in most cases; however, it can become intricate and more difficult if the tenant objects to the eviction. Regardless of why a landlord is evicting a tenant, he or she should follow the applicable laws or risk having the court dismiss the action or even face substantial financial damages if the landlord makes attempts at self-help eviction.
For instance, if the landlord undertakes such actions as denying access to the property by changing the locks or otherwise making entry impossible, shutting off utilities or removing the tenant’s personal belongings, he or she is subject to damages of $100 per day for every day the illegal technique is used. California law awards damages of $2,000 for every time the landlord threatens the tenant, like by reporting him or her to immigration authorities, or by violating the tenant’s right to quiet enjoyment of the premises. For example, violations include getting into the rental unit without or cause or committing different unlawful violations against the tenant.
California Eviction Notices
The California eviction method usually begins with the service of a written notice to the tenant. If the lease has terminated, and also the landlord needs to evict the tenant who has lived on the property for less than one year, then a 30-day written notice is required. On the other hand, if the tenant has lived on the premises for one year or more, then the California eviction notice is 60 days.
A 3-day notice is needed for the following types of evictions:
- Nonpayment of rent
- Breach or insubordination with a material provision in the lease agreement
- Creating a nuisance such as accumulating trash and ruins on the landlord property
- Doing something that affects the health and safety of others
- Unlawful activity on the premises
Service of Notice
The 3-day notice to vacate should be served personally on the tenant, on a subtenant of adequate age and discretion and by mailing the California Eviction Notices; or at the tenant’s place of business. If none of those can be accomplished, then various services may be performed by affixing a copy to the apartments’ door or leaving it in an exceedingly conspicuous place and mailing a copy.
The eviction notice should state the quantity of rent owed, the date it should be paid, the availability of the lease, and which unlawful detainer proceedings are filed if there is noncompliance. It should also be signed. The landlord should make sure that any trace amount of time for paying the rent has passed or the notice is also deemed inadequate. Further, the notice ought to declare that on a selected date, the premises are confiscated for noncompliance. The 3-day time period begins the day when the notice is denoted.
If a tenant has committed a breach of the lease, the landlord has the option of mechanically terminating it without any chance for the tenant to remedy the breach.
Eviction by Authorities
In certain jurisdictions, the local prosecutor might initiate an unlawful detainer action if the tenant has been charged with certain crimes and when the landlord has been given a 30-day notice to evict the tenant. In these cases, the tenant should be notified of the eviction and suggested of possible defences.
Should the tenant refuse to vacate, pay the rent, or cure the material breach of the lease, the landlord should file and serve a summons and grievance regarding unlawful detainer. This gives the tenant five days to reply rather than the usual 30 days in most civil actions. It should be served on the tenant by an adult who is not a party or representative of the landlord, though a method server is usually used. If the tenant does not respond in five days, the landlord should request a judgment and procure an instrument of possession instructing the sheriff to take away the tenant forcibly. A decision is not given automatically by the court.
If the tenant responds, then the court can schedule an attempt that must be set at intervals twenty of 20 days. The tenant may request a jury trial; but most cases are decided before a jury trial request, which can be costly. Also, the tenant will use the invention method by motion queries and requests for documents on the landlord who should observe and allow five days of receiving the applications.
On the trial schedule, the parties are given a chance to settle the matter at a conference or the trial may go forward.