Today's Law As Amended


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AB-2508 Unlawful detainer: pleadings.(2013-2014)



As Amends the Law Today


SECTION 1.

 Section 431.40 of the Code of Civil Procedure is amended to read:

431.40.
 (a) Any provision of law to the contrary notwithstanding, in any action in which the demand, exclusive of interest, or the value of the property in controversy does not exceed one thousand dollars ($1000), the defendant at his option, in lieu of demurrer or other answer, may file a general written denial and a brief statement of any new matter constituting a defense.
(b) Nothing in this section excuses the defendant from complying with the provisions of law applicable to a cross-complaint, and any cross-complaint of the defendant shall be subject to the requirements applicable in any other action.
(c) The general written denial described in subdivision (a) shall be on a blank available at the place of filing and shall be in a form prescribed by the Judicial Council. This form need not be verified.
(d) This section does not apply to an action for unlawful detainer brought pursuant to Section 1161.

SEC. 2.

 Section 1170.1 is added to the Code of Civil Procedure, to read:

1170.1.
 (a) This section applies in any unlawful detainer action brought pursuant to Section 1161 for default in payment of rent for a residential property in which the defendant asserts one or more of the following affirmative defenses in his or her answer:
(1) Breach of the warranty of habitability.
(2) The defendant exercised the repair and deduct remedy, and the plaintiff did not give proper credit.
(3) The defendant tendered rent prior to the expiration of the notice, and the plaintiff did not accept it.
(b) To assert an affirmative defense set forth in subdivision (a) the defendant shall allege facts applicable to that affirmative defense, as follows:
(1) With respect to the breach of the warranty of habitability, for each requirement of habitability that the plaintiff failed to provide, the answer shall allege facts demonstrating all of the following:
(A) The specific nature of the failed requirement.
(B) Facts demonstrating the failure to be substantial.
(C) The date on which the condition occurred.
(2) With respect to use of the repair and deduct remedy, the answer shall allege facts demonstrating all of the following:
(A) The habitability requirement that the plaintiff substantially failed to provide.
(B) The date on which notice was provided to the plaintiff of the condition that required repair.
(C) The circumstances under which a reasonable time for the plaintiff to perform the repair was fewer than 30 days.
(D) The amount of money the defendant spent to make the repair.
(E) The date notice was given to the plaintiff of the defendant’s expenditure.
(F) The month for which the plaintiff failed to provide credit against rent for the expenditure.
(G) A statement that the defendant has not exercised the right to repair and deduct more than once within the 12-month period before the month for which the cost of the repair was deducted from the rent.
(3) With respect to the defense that rent was tendered before the expiration of the notice and was not accepted, the answer shall allege facts demonstrating all of the following:
(A) That after service of the three-day notice, but before the three-day period expired, the defendant presented the full amount of rent to the plaintiff.
(B) That the plaintiff refused to accept the payment.
(C) The form of the payment tendered.
(c) In addition to the facts specified in subdivision (b), the defendant shall include one of the following statements in the answer:
(1) A statement that, at the time of filing the answer, the defendant has funds sufficient to satisfy the judgment sought by the plaintiff and whether those funds will be retained pending the outcome of the action.
(2) A statement that, at the time of filing the answer, the defendant does not have sufficient funds available to satisfy a judgment in the plaintiff’s favor and an explanation of why those funds are not available.
(d) The supporting facts and statements described in subdivisions (b) and (c) of this section shall be included and verified by the defendant in a form prescribed by the Judicial Council that is available at the place of filing.
(e) The Judicial Council shall, on or before July 1, 2016, develop a new form or revise an existing form that may be used by a defendant to assert the affirmative defenses and supporting facts set forth in this section to an unlawful detainer action.
(f) Subdivisions (a) to (d), inclusive, of this section shall become operative on July 1, 2016.