Code Section

Business and Professions Code - BPC

DIVISION 3. PROFESSIONS AND VOCATIONS GENERALLY [5000 - 9998.11]

  ( Heading of Division 3 added by Stats. 1939, Ch. 30. )
  

CHAPTER 5.5. Legal Document Assistants and Unlawful Detainer Assistants [6400 - 6415]

  ( Chapter 5.5 repealed and added by Stats. 2002, Ch. 1018, Sec. 2. )
  

ARTICLE 3. Conduct of Business and Prohibited Acts [6408 - 6415]
  ( Article 3 added by Stats. 2002, Ch. 1018, Sec. 2. )

  
6410.  

(a) Every legal document assistant or unlawful detainer assistant who enters into a contract or agreement with a client to provide services shall, prior to providing any services, provide the client with a written contract, the contents of which shall be prescribed by regulations adopted by the Department of Consumer Affairs.

(b) The written contract shall include all of the following provisions:

(1) The services to be performed.

(2) The costs of the services to be performed.

(3) The contact information of the county clerk’s office for the county in which the legal document assistant or unlawful detainer assistant is registered, including the address, phone number, and, if available, Internet Web site.

(4) There shall be printed on the face of the contract in 12-point boldface type a statement that the legal document assistant or unlawful detainer assistant is not an attorney and may not perform the legal services that an attorney performs.

(5) The contract shall contain a statement in 12-point boldface type that the county clerk has not evaluated or approved the registrant’s knowledge or experience, or the quality of the registrant’s services.

(6) The contract shall contain a statement in 12-point boldface type that the consumer may obtain information regarding free or low-cost representation through a local bar association or legal aid foundation and that the consumer may contact local law enforcement, a district attorney, or a legal aid foundation if the consumer believes that he or she has been a victim of fraud, the unauthorized practice of law, or any other injury.

(7) The contract shall contain a statement in 12-point boldface type that a legal document assistant or unlawful detainer assistant is not permitted to engage in the practice of law, including providing any kind of advice, explanation, opinion, or recommendation to a consumer about possible legal rights, remedies, defenses, options, selection of forms, or strategies.

(c) The contract shall be written both in English and in any other language comprehended by the client and principally used in any oral sales presentation or negotiation leading to execution of the contract. The legal document assistant or the unlawful detainer assistant is responsible for translating the contract into the language principally used in any oral sales presentation or negotiation leading to the execution of the contract.

(d) A written contract entered into on or after January 1, 2016, shall contain a statement that, pursuant to Section 6409.1, the venue for an action arising out of a dispute between a legal document assistant or unlawful detainer assistant and his or her client shall be the county in which the client has his or her primary residence.

(e) Failure of a legal document assistant or unlawful detainer assistant to comply with subdivisions (a), (b), (c), and (d) shall make the contract or agreement for services voidable at the option of the client. Upon the voiding of the contract, the legal document assistant or unlawful detainer assistant shall immediately return in full any fees paid by the client.

(f) In addition to any other right to rescind, the client shall have the right to rescind the contract within 24 hours of the signing of the contract. The client may cancel the contract by giving the legal document assistant or the unlawful detainer assistant any written statement to the effect that the contract is canceled. If the client gives notice of cancellation by mail addressed to the legal document assistant or unlawful detainer assistant, with first-class postage prepaid, cancellation is effective upon the date indicated on the postmark. Upon the voiding or rescinding of the contract or agreement for services, the legal document assistant or unlawful detainer assistant shall immediately return to the client any fees paid by the client, except fees for services that were actually, necessarily, and reasonably performed on the client’s behalf by the legal document assistant or unlawful detainer assistant with the client’s knowing and express written consent. The requirements of this subdivision shall be conspicuously set forth in the written contract.

(Amended by Stats. 2015, Ch. 295, Sec. 12. (AB 285) Effective January 1, 2016. Repealed as of January 1, 2021, pursuant to Section 6401.7.)