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AB-1436 Tenancy: rental payment default: mortgage forbearance: state of emergency: COVID-19.(2019-2020)

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Date Published: 07/28/2020 09:00 PM
AB1436:v93#DOCUMENT

Amended  IN  Senate  July 28, 2020
Amended  IN  Senate  July 02, 2020
Amended  IN  Senate  June 10, 2020
Amended  IN  Assembly  May 16, 2019
Amended  IN  Assembly  April 25, 2019
Amended  IN  Assembly  March 27, 2019

CALIFORNIA LEGISLATURE— 2019–2020 REGULAR SESSION

Assembly Bill
No. 1436


Introduced by Assembly Members Chiu, Bonta, Gonzalez, Limón, Santiago, and Wicks
(Coauthors: Assembly Members Carrillo, Kalra, Nazarian, Quirk-Silva, and Luz Rivas)
(Coauthors: Senators Allen, Durazo, Wieckowski, and Wiener)

February 22, 2019


An act to add Sections 1947.01, 1947.02, and 1947.03 to to, and to add Title 19 (commencing with Section 3273.01) to Part 4 of Division 3 of, the Civil Code, and to add Section 1161.6 to the Code of Civil Procedure, relating to tenancy. COVID-19 relief.


LEGISLATIVE COUNSEL'S DIGEST


AB 1436, as amended, Chiu. Tenancy: rental payment default: mortgage forbearance: state of emergency: COVID-19.

Existing

(1) Existing law regulates specified terms and conditions of tenancies. Existing law authorizes a landlord to demand security at the beginning of a tenancy for residential property and specifies the purposes for which the security may be used, including, among others, compensating the landlord for the tenant’s default in payment of rent.
This bill would prohibit a landlord from applying a security deposit or monthly rental payment for the satisfaction of an obligation other than the prospective month’s rent if the obligation to satisfy a financial obligation that accrued between the date a state of emergency relating to the COVID-19 pandemic was declared and either April 1, 2021, or 90 days after termination of the state of emergency, whichever is earlier (hereafter “effective time period”), or applying a monthly rental payment for the satisfaction of an obligation other than the prospective month’s rent, unless the payment or security is specifically designated by the tenant for the obligation. obligation, as specified. The bill would provide that a covered tenant, as defined, tenant who failed to pay rent or any other financial or monetary obligation that accrued during that effective time period shall not be deemed to be in default and would prohibit any action for recovery of unpaid rent or other sum until 12 months after the effective time period. The bill would define “covered tenant” as a tenant who is unable to satisfy rent accrued during the effective time period due to a loss of income or increased expenses resulting from COVID-19 and who provides a written statement to that effect to their landlord, as specified. The The bill would exclude a commercial tenant from the definition of “covered tenant.” The bill would provide that if a requirement in any local initiative, ordinance, regulation, or other policy conflicts with these provisions the provision that provides greater protection to covered tenants controls.
This bill would prohibit certain entities, including a housing provider, from using an alleged default in rent that accrued during the effective time period as a negative factor for the purpose of evaluating creditworthiness or for other specified purposes.

Existing

(2) Existing law provides that a tenant is guilty of unlawful detainer if the tenant continues to possess the property without permission of the landlord after the tenant defaults on rent, among other reasons.
This bill would provide that a covered tenant is not guilty of unlawful detainer if the alleged default in payment of rent or other financial obligation under the tenancy accrued during the effective time period. The bill would require a landlord, in an action to recover a debt arising from an alleged default in rent or other financial obligation accrued during the effective time period to submit in the verified complaint or other document submitted under penalty of perjury the amount of any payments, mortgage forbearance, mortgage forgiveness, or property tax reduction obtained from the lender or local, state, or federal entities to offset, replace, or compensate the creditor for lost rental income, and would require a court to offset the amount of rental payments as specified. The bill would require the landlord to affirmatively plead in the complaint that the tenant is not a covered tenant, and would provide the defendant 30 days to respond to the complaint.
(3) Existing law prescribes various requirements to be satisfied before the exercise of a power of sale under a mortgage or deed of trust. In this regard, existing law requires that a notice of default and a notice of sale be recorded and that specified periods of time elapse between the recording and the sale. Existing law establishes certain requirements in connection with foreclosures on mortgages and deeds of trust, including restrictions on the actions mortgage servicers while a borrower is attempting to secure a loan modification or has submitted a loan modification application.
This bill would enact the COVID-19 Tenant and Homeowner Relief Act of 2020. The bill, with respect to residential mortgage loans, would authorize a borrower experiencing a financial hardship during the covered period to request forbearance from any mortgage obligation by submitting a request to the borrower’s mortgage servicer. The “covered period” would be defined as 90 days after the termination of the COVID-19 state of emergency or April 1, 2021, whichever comes first. The bill would require the mortgage servicer to provide the forbearance requested for the period requested by the borrower, up to an initial period of 180 days, the length of which would be required to be extended at the request of the borrower for a total forbearance period of up to 12 months. If the borrower requests a forbearance period greater than 90 days, the servicer would be required to provide an initial forbearance term of not less than 90 days, and automatically extend it for an additional 90 days, unless the servicer confirms the borrower does not want to renew the forbearance. The bill would prohibit a mortgage servicer from misleading or making misrepresentations to a borrower about forbearance and repayment options.
The bill would require a mortgage servicer, upon placing a mortgage obligation in forbearance, to provide the borrower written notification of the forbearance terms, treatment of payments, and other options available to the borrower at the end of the forbearance period. The bill would require the servicer, no later than 30 days before the end of the forbearance, to notify the borrower of their options to modify their loan or reinstate their mortgage account to current status, as provided, and provide a written notice, within 30 days of the original notification, of their rights and obligations with regard to their loan modification or reinstatement, as provided.
The bill would prohibit a mortgage servicer from assessing, accruing, or applying fees, penalties, or additional interest to the borrower’s account beyond specified scheduled or calculated amounts. The bill would require a mortgage servicer that claims investor guidelines or applicable law prohibit implementation of postforbearance modification or reinstatement on the required terms, to notify the borrower and to present documentation, as specified. The bill would require the mortgage servicer, if the borrower is unable to return to making regular mortgage payments, to evaluate all loss mitigation and foreclosure prevention options, and, if the borrower qualifies, to implement the option with no penalties, late fees, modification fees, or additional interest beyond specified scheduled amounts. The bill would also authorize a mortgage servicer, if a borrower does not qualify for loss mitigation or foreclosure prevention options to pursue foreclosure after expiration of the covered period.
The bill, with respect to multifamily mortgage loans, would authorize a borrower to submit a request for forbearance to the borrower’s mortgage servicers, affirming that the multifamily borrower is experiencing hardship during the COVID-19 emergency. The bill would authorize a mortgage servicer, upon request from a multifamily borrower, to request reasonable documentation of a decrease in rental income in order to demonstrate financial hardship. The bill would define “financial hardship” for purposes of these provisions to mean a decline of an unspecified percent of average monthly rental income over the 2 most recent calendar months, as specified. The bill would require a mortgage servicer, upon satisfactory demonstration of financial hardship, to provide the forbearance for not less than 30 days, subject to extension.
The bill would authorize a borrower harmed by a violation of the above requirements to bring an action for injunctive relief, damages, restitution, and any other remedies available. The bill would require a court to award attorney’s fees and costs to a prevailing borrower.
Vote: MAJORITY   Appropriation: NO   Fiscal Committee: NO   Local Program: NO  

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


SECTION 1.

The intent of the Legislature in enacting this act is to provide mortgage forbearance and foreclosure protections to residential rental property owners facing economic impacts due to the COVID-19 crisis.

SEC. 2.SECTION 1.

 Section 1947.01 is added to the Civil Code, immediately following Section 1947, to read:

1947.01.
 (a) Notwithstanding Sections 1470, 1947, 1950.5, or any other law, a landlord shall not apply do either of the following during the tenancy:
(1) Apply a security deposit or monthly rental payment tendered by that tenant to a satisfaction of to satisfy an obligation other than the prospective month’s rent if the obligation that accrued during the effective time period unless the payment or security is specifically designated by the tenant agrees in writing to be allow the deposit to be applied in satisfaction of the obligation.
(2) Apply a monthly rental payment to any obligation other than the prospective month’s rent, unless so designated by the tenant in writing.
(b) Any provision of a stipulation, settlement agreement, or other agreement, including a lease agreement, that conflicts with or purports to waive the provisions of this section is prohibited and is void as contrary to public policy.
(c) If a local initiative, ordinance, regulation, or other policy conflicts with this section, the provision that provides greater protection to covered tenants shall control.

(c)

(d) For purposes of this section, the following definitions apply:
(1) “Covered tenant” means a tenant who has provided their landlord a written statement that they have had a loss of income or increased expenses, or both, as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic that has impacted their ability to fully pay rent, in accordance with paragraph (1) of subdivision (e) of Section 1161.6 of the Code of Civil Procedure. “Covered tenant” does not include a commercial tenant.
(2) “Effective time period” means the time period between the date a state of emergency is initially declared and the earlier of either of the following:
(A) Ninety days after the termination of the state of emergency.
(B) April 1, 2021.
(3) “State of emergency” means an emergency related to the COVID-19 pandemic declared by the Governor pursuant to the California Emergency Services Act (Chapter 7 (commencing with Section 8550) of Division 1 of Title 2 of the Government Code).

SEC. 3.SEC. 2.

 Section 1947.02 is added to the Civil Code, immediately following Section 1947.01, to read:

1947.02.
 (a) A covered tenant who failed to perform an obligation to pay rent rent, or any other financial or monetary obligation, that accrued during the effective time period shall not be deemed to be in default of the obligation, and no action to recover unpaid rent or other sums due, may be pursued, until 12 months after the effective time period.
(b) (1) Nothing in this section shall prohibit a landlord from recovering unpaid rent by written agreement with the tenant, provided that the agreement does not exceed the actual amount of the debt, does not include attorney’s fees or costs, late fees, penalties, or interest related to the unpaid rent, and the debt is offset by the amount of any payments, mortgage forbearance, mortgage forgiveness, or property tax reduction obtained from local, state, or federal entities that were provided to the landlord to offset, replace, or compensate the landlord for decreased rental income or provided as financial assistance intended to avoid foreclosure of the subject property. assistance.
(2) The agreement shall not require the tenant to vacate the premises as a condition of satisfying the unpaid rent obligation.
(3) A landlord shall notify the tenant in writing of their rights under this section before the agreement is signed.
(4) Any agreement with a tenant regarding the payment of rent shall be in writing and shall adhere to the requirements of Section 1632.
(c) A landlord shall not charge a tenant tenant, or attempt to collect from a tenant, fees assessed for late payment of rent that accrued during the effective time period, nor may the landlord charge fees to a tenant for services previously provided by the landlord, as compensation for purported damages for late payment of rent that accrued during the effective time period. A landlord shall not provide different terms or conditions of tenancy or withhold a service or amenity based on whether a tenant repays or agrees to repay all or any portion of unpaid rent.
(d) A landlord shall not harass, threaten, or seek to intimidate a tenant in order to obtain a tenant’s payment or agreement to pay any portion of unpaid rent or to obtain a tenant’s vacation of the property because of a tenant’s failure to pay rent.
(e) Any stipulation, settlement agreement, or other agreement, including a lease agreement, that conflicts with or purports to waive the provisions of this section is prohibited and is void as contrary to public policy.
(f) If a local initiative, ordinance, regulation, or other policy conflicts with this section, the provision that provides greater protection to covered tenants shall apply.

(f)

(g) For purposes of this section, the terms “covered tenant,” “effective time period,” and “state of emergency” have the definitions provided in Section 1947.01.

SEC. 4.SEC. 3.

 Section 1947.03 is added to the Civil Code, immediately following Section 1947.02, to read:

1947.03.
 (a) A housing provider, credit reporting agency, tenant screening company, or other entity that evaluates tenants on behalf of a housing provider shall not use an alleged default in rent that accrued during the effective time period as a negative factor for the purpose of evaluating creditworthiness or as the basis for a negative reference to a prospective housing provider, regardless of whether a report is received alleging default in the payment of rent.
(b) For purposes of this section, the terms “covered tenant,” “effective time period,” and “state of emergency” have the definitions provided in Section 1947.01.

SEC. 4.

 Title 19 (commencing with Section 3273.01) is added to Part 4 of Division 3 of the Civil Code, to read:

TITLE 19. COVID-19 Tenant and Homeowner Relief Act of 2020

CHAPTER  1. Title and Definitions

3273.01.
 This title is known, and may be cited, as the “COVID-19 Tenant and Homeowner Relief Law of 2020.”

3273.1.
 For purposes of this title, the following definitions apply:
(a) (1) “Borrower” means either of the following:
(A) A natural person who is a mortgagor or trustor or a confirmed successor in interest as defined in Section 1024.31 of Title 12 of the Code of Federal Regulations
(B) An entity other than a natural person provided the secured property is currently occupied by one or more residential tenants.
(2)  “Borrower” shall not include any of the following:
(A) An individual who has surrendered the secured property as evidenced by either a letter confirming the surrender or delivery of the keys to the property to the mortgagee, trustee, beneficiary, or authorized agent.
(B) A real estate investment trust, as defined in Section 856 of the Internal Revenue Code.
(C) A corporation.
(D) A limited liability company in which at least one member is a corporation.
(3) “Borrower” shall also mean a person who holds a power of attorney for a borrower described in paragraph (1).
(b) “Covered period” means the time period between the operational date of this title and the earlier of either of the following:
(1) Ninety days after the termination of the COVID-19 state of emergency.
(2) April 1, 2021.
(c) “Impound account” means a type of account for payment of taxes on real property, insurance premiums, or other purposes relating to the property. Such an account may be structured as an impound, trust, or other type of account.
(d) “Mortgage servicer” means a person or entity who directly services a loan, or who is responsible for interacting with the borrower, managing the loan account on a daily basis including collecting and crediting periodic loan payments, managing any escrow account, or enforcing the note and security instrument, either as the current owner of the promissory note or as the current owner’s authorized agent. “Mortgage servicer” also means a subservicing agent to a master servicer by contract. “Mortgage servicer” shall not include a trustee, or a trustee’s authorized agent, acting under a power of sale pursuant to a deed of trust.
(e) “Multifamily borrower” means a borrower of a residential mortgage loan that is secured by a lien against a property comprising five or more dwelling units.
(f) “State of emergency” means an emergency related to the COVID-19 pandemic declared by the Governor pursuant to the California Emergency Services Act (Chapter 7 (commencing with Section 8550) of Division 1 of Title 2 of the Government Code).

3273.2.
 (a) The provisions of this title apply to specified obligations, as follows:
(1) Article 1 (commencing with Section 3273.10) of Chapter 2 shall apply to a mortgage or deed of trust that is secured by residential property containing no more than four dwelling units, including individual units of condominiums or cooperatives, and that was outstanding as of the enactment date of this title.
(2) Article 2 (commencing with Section 3273.20) of Chapter 2 shall apply to a mortgage or deed of trust that is secured by residential property containing five or more dwelling units, and that was outstanding as of the enactment date of this title.
(b) The provisions of this title shall apply to a depository institution chartered under federal or state law, a person covered by the licensing requirements of Division 9 (commencing with Section 22000) or Division 20 (commencing with Section 50000) of the Financial Code, or a person licensed pursuant to Part 1 (commencing with Section 10000) of Division 4 of the Business and Professions Code.

CHAPTER  2. Mortgages
Article  1. Residential Mortgage Loans

3273.10.
 (a) During the covered period, a borrower may request forbearance from any mortgage obligation by submitting a request to the borrower’s mortgage servicer, either orally or in writing, affirming that the borrower is experiencing a financial hardship that prevents the borrower from making timely payments on the mortgage obligation due, directly or indirectly, to the COVID-19 emergency.
(b) Pursuant to a borrower submitting a request for forbearance, a mortgage servicer may require the borrower to provide a written attestation subject to the following requirements:
(1) The attestation shall include only the following text: “I, [borrower name], attest that I am experiencing a financial hardship that prevents me from making timely payments on my mortgage obligation due, directly or indirectly, to the COVID-19 emergency.”
(2) The mortgage servicer shall notify the borrower of the attestation requirement and the wording set forth in paragraph (1) and provide clear directions for how the attestation shall be delivered to the mortgage servicer.
(3) The mortgage servicer shall provide forbearance for a period of no less than 30 days before canceling the forbearance due to a borrower failing to provide the attestation required by the mortgage servicer.
(4) The mortgage servicer shall not require the borrower to provide any additional information or documentation besides the attestation described in paragraph (1).
(c) A mortgage servicer shall provide the forbearance requested pursuant to subdivision (a) for the period requested by the borrower, up to an initial period of 180 days, the length of which shall be extended by the servicer at the request of the borrower for the period or periods requested by the borrower, for a total forbearance period of up to 12 months. At the borrower’s request, either the initial or any extended period of forbearance may be shortened or discontinued.
(d) For purposes of providing a forbearance under this section and pursuant to a borrower requesting a forbearance period of greater than 90 days, a mortgage servicer shall provide an initial forbearance with a term of not less than 90 days, provided that the forbearance is automatically extended for an additional 90 days unless the mortgage servicer confirms that the borrower does not want to renew the forbearance.
(e) During the period of a forbearance under this article, a mortgage servicer shall not assess, accrue, or apply to a borrower’s account any fees, penalties, or additional interest beyond the amounts scheduled or calculated as if the borrower made all contractual payments on time and in full under the terms of the mortgage contract in effect at the time the borrower enters into the forbearance.
(f) Upon providing a forbearance pursuant to subdivision (c), a mortgage servicer shall provide the borrower written notification of the forbearance terms, including treatment of any payments to an impound account during the forbearance period, and a description of the types of loss mitigation options that may be available to the borrower at the end of the forbearance period based on the borrower’s specific loan.
(g) A mortgage servicer, mortgagee, or beneficiary of the deed of trust, or an authorized agent thereof, who, with respect to a borrower of a federally backed mortgage, complies with the relevant provisions regarding forbearance in Section 4022 of the federal Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (the CARES Act) (Public Law 116-136), including any amendments or revisions to those provisions, shall be deemed to be in compliance with this section.

3273.11.
 (a) No later than 30 days before the end of any forbearance period that has not been extended or 30 days after a request by a borrower to terminate the forbearance, a mortgage servicer shall notify the borrower of their options to modify their loan or reinstate the mortgage account to current status in a manner that does not do any of the following:
(1) Require the borrower to make a lump-sum reinstatement payment prior to the mortgage loan’s maturity date.
(2) Increase the borrower’s preforbearance monthly principal and interest payment except subject to any adjustment of the applicable index pursuant to the terms of an adjustable rate mortgage.
(b) Within 30 days of providing the notification required by subdivision (a), the mortgage servicer shall provide the borrower with a written notice that does all of the following:
(1) Describes the terms of any loan modification or other reinstatement options available to the borrower, including any new payment schedule, new balance, or new date of maturity.
(2) Informs the borrower that they have the option of prepaying the outstanding balance or any portion thereof at any time, in a lump sum or otherwise.
(3) Clearly explains to the borrower the process for electing a loan modification or other reinstatement option that is available to the borrower.
(4) Advises the borrower to contact the mortgage servicer if they cannot resume making their preforbearance mortgage payments.
(c) A mortgage servicer that claims investor guidelines or any applicable law prohibits the mortgage servicer from implementing a postforbearance option that complies with subdivision (a) shall notify the borrower of the claim at the time of an offer of forbearance. Failure to make that disclosure shall have the effect of a designation by the servicer that it has the authority to implement the provisions of this section. At the time of an offer of forbearance, the servicer claiming that exception shall present documentation of the ground for the exception to the borrower.
(d) (1) Notwithstanding subdivision (g) of Section 2923.6 or any other law or regulation, if the borrower notifies the mortgage servicer, pursuant to paragraph (4) of subdivision (b), that they are not able to resume making their preforbearance mortgage payments, the mortgage servicer shall evaluate the borrower for all loss mitigation and foreclosure prevention options available to the borrower under the terms of any investor requirements and existing federal or state laws, policies, or agency guidance, without regard to whether the borrower has previously requested, been offered, or provided a loan modification or other loss mitigation option and without any requirement that the borrower bring the account current before that evaluation or as a condition of eligibility.
(2) If the borrower qualifies for an option described in paragraph (1), the mortgage servicer shall implement the option, with no penalties or late fees, and with no modification fees charged to the borrower. The mortgage servicer shall not charge additional interest beyond the amounts scheduled or calculated as if the borrower made all contractual payments on time and in full under the terms of the mortgage contract in effect at the time the borrower entered into the forbearance, except to the extent that interest is charged after the modification on any arrears that are capitalized into the new balance of a modified loan.
(e) Any mortgage servicer, mortgagee, or beneficiary of the deed of trust, or authorized agent thereof, who, with respect to a borrower of a federally backed loan, complies with the guidance to mortgagees regarding borrower options following a COVID-19-related forbearance provided by the Federal National Mortgage Association, the Federal Home Loan Mortgage Corporation, the Federal Housing Administration of the United States Department of Housing and Urban Development, the United States Department of Veterans Affairs, or the Rural Development division of the United States Department of Agriculture, including any amendments, updates, or revisions to that guidance, shall be deemed to be in compliance with this section.

3273.12.
 If a borrower does not qualify for an option described in Section 3273.11, the mortgage servicer may pursue foreclosure acts after to the extent that those acts comply with relevant state law, including, but not limited to, Sections 2923.5, 2923.55, 2923.6, 2923.7, 2924.9, 2924.10, 2924.11, 2924.17, and 2924.18.

3273.13.
 It is the intent of the Legislature that a mortgage servicer offer a borrower a postforbearance loss mitigation option plan that is consistent with the mortgage servicer’s contractual or other authority.

3273.14.
 A mortgage servicer shall not mislead or make misrepresentations to a borrower regarding any of the following:
(a) Options for forbearance provided by state or federal law or otherwise provided or available through the servicer.
(b) Options for repayment after a forbearance period ends provided by state or federal law or otherwise provided or available through the servicer.

3273.15.
 A mortgage servicer shall communicate about forbearance and loan modification options described in this article in the borrower’s preferred language when the mortgage servicer regularly communicates with any borrower in that language.

3273.16.
 (a) A borrower who is harmed by a violation of this article may bring an action to obtain injunctive relief, damages, restitution, and any other remedy to redress the violation.
(b) A court shall award a prevailing borrower reasonable attorney’s fees and costs in any action based on any violation of this article in which injunctive relief against a sale, including a temporary restraining order, is granted. A court may award a prevailing borrower reasonable attorney’s fees and costs in an action for a violation of this article in which relief is granted but no injunctive relief against a sale is granted.
(c) The rights, remedies, and procedures provided to borrowers by this section are in addition to and independent of any other rights, remedies, or procedures under any other law. This section shall not be construed to alter, limit, or negate any other rights, remedies, or procedures provided to borrowers by law.

3273.17.
 Any waiver by a borrower of the provisions of this article is contrary to public policy and shall be void.

Article  2. Multifamily Mortgage Loans

3273.20.
 During the covered period, a multifamily borrower experiencing a financial hardship due, directly or indirectly, to the COVID-19 emergency may request a forbearance pursuant to this article.

3273.21.
 A multifamily borrower that was current on its payments as of February 1, 2020, may submit an oral or written request for forbearance under this article to the borrower’s servicer affirming that the multifamily borrower is experiencing a financial hardship during the COVID-19 emergency.

3273.22.
 (a) Upon receipt of an oral or written request for forbearance from a multifamily borrower, a mortgage servicer may request any reasonable documentation of a decrease in rental income the servicer requires in order to demonstrate financial hardship. For the purposes of this section, “financial hardship” means a decline of __ percent or more of average monthly rental income over the two most recent calendar months when compared to either of the following:
(1) The borrower’s average monthly rental income for the property in question for the two calendar months before March 4, 2020.
(2) The borrower’s average monthly rental income for the same calendar month in 2019.
(b) Upon receipt of satisfactory demonstration of financial hardship pursuant to subdivision (a), a servicer shall do both of the following:
(1) Provide the forbearance for up to 30 days.
(2) Extend the forbearance for up to five additional 30-day periods upon the request of the multifamily borrower, provided that the borrower’s request for an extension is made during the covered time period, and, at least 15 days prior to the end of the forbearance period.
(c) A multifamily borrower shall have the option to discontinue the forbearance at any time.

3273.23.
 (a) A multifamily borrower who is harmed by a violation of this article may bring an action to obtain injunctive relief, damages, restitution, and any other remedy to redress the violation.
(b) A court shall award a prevailing borrower reasonable attorney’s fees and costs in any action based on any violation of this article in which injunctive relief against a sale, including a temporary restraining order, is granted. A court may award a prevailing party reasonable attorney’s fees and costs in an action for a violation of this article in which relief is granted but no injunctive relief against a sale is granted.
(c) The rights, remedies, and procedures provided to multifamily borrowers by this section are in addition to and independent of any other rights, remedies, or procedures under any other law. This section shall not be construed to alter, limit, or negate any other rights, remedies, or procedures provided to borrowers by law.

SEC. 5.

 Section 1161.6 is added to the Code of Civil Procedure, immediately following Section 1161.5, to read:

1161.6.
 (a) Notwithstanding paragraph (2) paragraphs (2) or (3) of Section 1161, a covered tenant is not guilty of unlawful detainer if the alleged default in payment of rent rent, or an alleged default in any other financial obligation under the tenancy, accrued during the effective time period. It shall be unlawful to terminate a tenancy in retaliation for a default in rent that is subject to this subdivision. Nothing in this section shall prohibit a landlord from seeking to recover unpaid rent through a written agreement with the tenant or by other civil remedies subject to the limitations in Section 1947.02 of the Civil Code or by written agreement with the tenant. Any stipulation, settlement agreement, or other agreement, including a lease agreement, that conflicts with or purports to waive the provisions of this subdivision is prohibited and is void as contrary to public policy.
(b) (1) In any action to recover a debt arising from an alleged default in rent that accrued during the effective time period, the creditor shall set forth in the verified complaint or other document submitted under penalty of perjury the amount of any payments, mortgage forbearance, mortgage forgiveness, or property tax reduction during the relevant time period obtained from any local, state, or federal entity that were provided to the landlord to offset, replace, or compensate the landlord for decreased rental income or provided as financial assistance intended to avoid foreclosure of the subject property. assistance. In any judgment on the debt, the court shall offset the amount of these payments by the portion of the financial assistance fairly attributable to the rental unit in question. The defendant may present evidence that the creditor received relief designed to offset debt related to the rental unit in question, and any agreement in satisfaction of such a debt shall be void if it fails to account for receipt of payments described in this section.
(2) In any action described in subdivision (a), the creditor shall not be entitled to recover fees assessed against a tenant for late payment of rent. rent or other sums due.
(c) In any unlawful detainer action based on paragraph (2) of Section 1161 filed within 12 months after the effective time period, the landlord shall be required to affirmatively plead in the complaint that the tenant is not a covered tenant and shall bear the burden of proof that the tenant did not provide the written statement specified in paragraph (1) of subdivision (e).
(d) In any unlawful detainer action based on paragraph (2) of Section 1161 due to nonpayment of rent filed within 12 months after the effective time period, notwithstanding Section 1167, the defendant’s response shall be filed within 30 days.
(e) (1) A tenant who is unable to satisfy all or a portion of the rent or other sums due that has have accrued during the effective time period due to a loss of income or increased expenses resulting from COVID-19 shall provide the following written statement in response to a written demand to cure the default in rent pursuant to paragraph (2) of Section 1161:
I declare that the following is true and correct:
I have had a loss of income and/or increased expenses as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic that has impacted my ability to fully pay the rent.
Signed:
Dated:
(2) The tenant shall provide the notice to their landlord as soon as reasonably practical but may provide the notice any time before judgment is entered.
(3) Any notice served pursuant to paragraph (2) of Section 1161 for an alleged default that occurred during the effective time period shall be accompanied by a document containing the written statement specified in paragraph (1) that the tenant may sign and return to the landlord.
(f) For purposes of this section:
(1) “Covered tenant” means a tenant described in paragraph (1) of subdivision (e) who has provided a written statement to their landlord. “Covered tenant” does not include a commercial tenant.
(2) “Effective time period” means the time period between the date a state of emergency is initially declared and the earlier occurrence of either of the following:
(A) Ninety days after the termination of the state of emergency.
(B) April 1, 2021.
(3) “State of emergency” means an emergency related to the COVID-19 pandemic declared by the Governor pursuant to the California Emergency Services Act (Chapter 7 (commencing with Section 8550) of Division 1 of Title 2 of the Government Code).

SEC. 6.

 The provisions of this bill are severable. If any provision of this bill or its application is held invalid, that invalidity shall not affect other provisions or applications that can be given effect without the invalid provision or application.