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AB-1481 Tenancy termination: just cause.(2019-2020)

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Date Published: 05/20/2019 10:34 AM
AB1481:v96#DOCUMENT

Amended  IN  Assembly  May 20, 2019
Amended  IN  Assembly  April 23, 2019
Amended  IN  Assembly  March 28, 2019

CALIFORNIA LEGISLATURE— 2019–2020 REGULAR SESSION

Assembly Bill
No. 1481


Introduced by Assembly Member Assembly Members Grayson and Bonta
(Coauthor: Assembly Member Carrillo)

February 22, 2019


An act to add and repeal Section 1946.2 to of the Civil Code, relating to housing.


LEGISLATIVE COUNSEL'S DIGEST


AB 1481, as amended,  Grayson. Tenancy termination: just cause.
Existing law specifies that a hiring of residential real property, for a term not specified by the parties, is deemed to be renewed at the end of the term implied by law unless one of the parties gives written notice to the other of that party’s intention to terminate. Existing law requires an owner of a residential dwelling to give notice at least 60 days prior to the proposed date of termination, or at least 30 days prior to the proposed date of termination if any tenant or resident has resided in the dwelling for less than one year, as specified. Existing law requires any notice given by an owner to be given in a prescribed manner, to contain certain information, and to be formatted, as specified.
This bill would, with certain exceptions, prohibit a lessor of residential property from terminating the lease without just cause, as defined, stated in the written notice to terminate.
This bill would require, for curable violations, that the lessor give a notice of violation and an opportunity to cure the violation prior to issuing the notice of termination.
This bill would require, for no-fault just cause terminations, as specified, that the lessor assist the lessee certain lessees to relocate, regardless of the lessee’s income, by providing a direct payment to the lessee. lessee, per a specified formula.
This bill would require a lessor of residential property to provide notice to a lessee of the lessee’s rights under these provisions at the beginning of the tenancy by providing an addendum to the lease to be signed by the lessee when the lease agreement is signed.
This bill would not prevent local rules or ordinances that provide a higher level of tenant protection, as specified.
This bill would repeal these provisions as of January 1, 2030.
Vote: MAJORITY   Appropriation: NO   Fiscal Committee: NO   Local Program: NO  

The people of the State of California do enact as follows:


SECTION 1.

 Section 1946.2 is added to the Civil Code, to read:

1946.2.
 (a) Notwithstanding any other law, no lessor of residential property, that the tenant has occupied with or without a written lease agreement, in which the tenant has occupied the property, with or without a written lease agreement, for six months or more, shall terminate the lease without just cause, which shall be stated in the written notice to terminate tenancy set forth in Section 1946.1.
(b) For purposes of this section, “just cause” includes either of the following:
(1) At-fault just cause, which includes any of the following:
(A) Failure to pay rent.
(B) Substantial breach of a material term of the rental agreement, including, but not limited to, violation of a provision of the lease after being issued a written notice to stop the violation.
(C) Nuisance.
(D) Waste.
(E) Refusal, by the tenant to sign a new lease that is identical to the previous lease, after the previous lease expired.
(F) Illegal conduct, including, but not limited to, using the residential property for criminal activity. However, a charge or conviction for a crime that is unrelated to the tenancy is not at-fault just cause for termination of the hiring.
(2) No-fault just cause, which includes any of the following:
(A) (i) Owner intent to occupy the residential property.
(ii) Clause (i) shall apply only if the tenant agrees, in writing, to the termination, or if a provision of the lease agreement allows the owner to terminate the lease if the owner unilaterally decides to occupy the residential property.
(B) Withdrawal of the residential property from the rental market.
(C) Unsafe habitation, as determined by a government agency that has issued an order to vacate, order to comply, or other order that necessitates vacating the residential property.
(D) Intent to demolish or to substantially remodel.
(c) Before a lessor of residential property issues a lessee a notice to terminate tenancy for just cause that is a curable lease violation, the lessor shall first give notice of the violation to the lessee with an opportunity to cure the violation.
(d) If a lessor of residential property issues a notice to terminate tenancy for no-fault just cause, the lessor shall assist the lessee, regardless of the lessee’s income, to relocate by providing a direct payment to the lessee. The amount of this payment shall be determined based upon the number of bedrooms contained on the residential property. If a lessor issues a notice to terminate tenancy for no-fault just cause, the lessor shall notify the lessee of the lessee’s right to relocation assistance pursuant to this section.
(1) The amount of relocation assistance shall be determined as follows:
(A) If the lessee has resided in the rental property for six months or more, but less than two years, the amount shall be equal to two months’ rent.
(B) If the lessee has resided in the rental property for two years or more, the amount shall be equal to three months’ rent.
(2) This subdivision shall not apply to a lessor who is a natural person and who leases four or fewer single-family residences.
(e) This section shall not apply to the following types of residential properties or residential circumstances:
(1) Transient and tourist hotel occupancy as defined in subdivision (b) of Section 1940.
(2) Housing accommodations in a nonprofit hospital, religious facility, or extended care facility.
(3) Dormitories owned and operated by an institution of higher education or a kindergarten through grade 12 school.
(4) Housing accommodations in which the tenant shares bathroom or kitchen facilities with the owner who maintains their principal residence at the residential property.
(5) Single owner-occupied residences, including a residence in which the owner-occupant rents or leases two units or bedrooms, including, but not limited to, an accessory dwelling unit or a junior accessory dwelling unit.
(f) A lessor of residential property shall provide notice to a lessee of the lessee’s rights under this section at the beginning of the tenancy by providing an addendum to the lease which shall be signed by the lessee when the lease agreement is signed.
(g) This section does not prevent the enforcement of an existing local rule or ordinance, or the adoption of a local rule or ordinance, that requires just cause for termination of a residential tenancy that further limits or specifies the allowable reasons for eviction, requires longer notice or additional procedures for evicting tenants, provides for higher relocation assistance amounts, or is determined to provide a higher level of tenant protections than this section.
(h) This section shall remain in effect only until January 1, 2030, and as of that date is repealed.