Not every landlord-tenant relationship is meant to be. Sometimes evictions happen, and sometimes renters need to leave before their lease is up. Life happens, but before you move on, you should know your legal rights as a renter.
In California, if you have been living in a rented space for longer than a year, your landlord is required to provide at least 60 days notice for you to vacate the premises in the event of an eviction. This is for standard eviction cases where the tenant is in the wrong.
An unlawful detainer action occurs when there is a dispute over the right to live in the property. Unlawful detainer actions are eviction cases brought by the landlord to the courts in an attempt to have the tenant removed from their building. Typically this happens after the 60-day notice if the tenant has not yet moved out. Since the landlord cannot legally remove the tenant physically, the courts will decide who has the right to live there.
If a tenant has paid their rent, is within their lease contract, and hasn’t broken any of the lease agreement terms, then they will be allowed to stay. If not, the sheriff will be asked to complete the eviction process.
When Tenants Can Break A Lease
As a tenant, you can terminate a lease early without penalty under the following circumstances.
- You or someone you are related to is a victim of any form of physical assault or stalking.
- You are about to start your active military duty.
- The building or unit you are staying in is unsafe and has building code violations or in the event of your landlord’s failure to disclose defects.
- If you face harassment from your landlord in the form of privacy violations or tampering with your utilities or possessions.
If you are renting an apartment in California, it is a good idea to know your rights when it comes to the eviction process and what constitutes a breach of contract between you and your landlord. It can help protect you from injustice and allow you to continue living your life in peace. If you have any questions, contact a real estate lawyer today.