In California, landlords must have a just cause to remove a tenant from his premises. Some valid reasons include:
- Failure to pay rent
- Violating the lease
- Staying after the lease is up
- Damages the property bringing down the value (commits “waste”);
- Causing a nuisance by disturbing other tenants and neighbors even after being asked to stop.
- Damaging the property
- Using the property to do something illegal.
- Using the unit for an impermissible manner such as operating a business in a residential zone.
Before evicting a tenant, California law requires a landlord to legally terminate the tenancy. The notice must be given but if a serious lease violation occurs, the landlord does not need to give the tenant the option of correcting the problem behavior.
Three-Day Notice to Pay Rent
If rent is not paid when due, the landlord can give a three-day notice to pay rent or quit.
Three-Day Notice to Cure
If a violation of the lease or rental agreement occurs, the landlord can give the tenant a three-day notice to cure.
Three-Day Unconditional Quit Notice
Applicable if/when the tenant commits specific, serious violations. The notices state the tenant must move out of the unit within three days of receiving the notice.
Unlawful Detainer Suit
A landlord can legally evict a tenant by going through the court. California law has made it illegal for the landlord to personally remove the tenant. Even after winning the eviction lawsuit, the landlord must use a sheriff to actually perform the eviction.
Tenant have powerful rights to proper housing, privacy, and to be free of illegal discrimination, but you can’t assert your rights unless you know them!
A good online reference can be found at
The Law Office of Juan Carlos Pallares is available if you decide that you would like to hire an attorney to make sure the process is completed legally. We look forward to your call.