Unlawful Detainer

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UNLAWFUL DETAINER

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What You Need To Know

In Los Angeles, a landlord may evict a tenant for several reasons such as: failure to pay rent on time, breaking the lease or rental agreement and not correcting the problem, or damaging the property bringing down the value. However, a landlord must follow several steps in order to evict the tenants. It is against California law for a landlord to evict tenants without a court order. In order to get a court order the landlord must file an unlawful detainer in Los Angeles.

An unlawful detainer action (eviction) is a proceeding, there are several steps involved in this process.

  • The Landlord gives the Tenant all of the statutory-required notices (3-Day Notice to Pay Rent or Quit, 3 Day Notice to Quit, or a 30-Day or 60-Day Notice to Vacate.)
  • Landlord files Summons and Complaint (Unlawful Detainer Lawsuit) and serves the Tenant.
  • The Tenant then has 5 days to respond. If the Tenant does not respond, the Landlord will get an automatic Default Judgment and the Tenant will have limited time (usually 5 days) to vacate the premises.

These notices must be served properly. If they are not, they are ineffective which means the landlord must start all over again.

Tenants Rights

Even if a tenant has not paid rent, a landlord cannot:

  • Physically remove the tenant
  • Sell or take possession of the tenant’s personal property
  • Lock the tenant out by changing the locks
  • Shut off the utilities, like water or electricity

Additionally, a landlord or management company, must meet certain standards of habitability. This means a landlord must make sure the premises are fit for residential occupation. If the premises are not fit for standard living conditions, and the Landlord has filed an unlawful detainer action, the tenant may be able to justify the non-payment of rent and may be able to stay on the premises.

To protect your rights, you must file a response within the time required by law (5 days). If you fail to respond, your landlord will get an automatic default meaning you lose your case.

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Contact Us

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Featured Success

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Wrongful death recovery in building collapse.

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How We Help

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We regularly advise property owners and property management companies in various landlord – tenant disputes, including unlawful detainer, lease disputes, rent ordinance compliance, breach of habitability claims, mold litigation, toxic-tort matters, and fair housing act claims in the Los Angeles area.

Contact our office today at 310-659-4900 for a free consultation.

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CONTACT US

Call our offices at (310) 659-4900, our 24-hour hotline at (800) 750-8946, or email us to set up a free consultation.

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Los Angeles

1112 N. Sherbourne Drive West Hollywood, CA 90069

Phone: (310) 659-4900

Fax: (310) 659-4926

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