What you are describing are not
code violations. A code violation is a violation of a municipal ordinance associated with real property
. You are being cited for violations of the association
Covenants, Conditions and Restrictions (CC&Rs).
Under California appellate case law precedent, an association may levy fines and penalties for violations of the CC&Rs, or other reasonable rules of the association. See, Liebler v. Point Loma Tennis Club, (1995) 40 Cal.App.4th 1600
. However, the fines/penalties may not be assessed, except after due process is accorded the alleged violator.
In my opinion, since you are the actual alleged violator, the failure to permit you to appear and defend the violation violates due process, which includes:
(i) giving the accused notice of the alleged violation;
(ii) providing a reasonable opportunity for the person to defend themselves;
(iii) knowing the identity of the accuser; and
(iv) giving the accused an opportunity to examine and refute the evidence. (Applebaum v. Board of Directors (1980) 104 Cal.App.3d 648, 657; Carson v. Glass Bottle Blowers (1951) 37 Cal.2d 134, 144.
However, unless your landlord takes the matter to arbitration or court, to challenge the imposition of the fines/penalties, he/she will be liable for those fines/penalties.
You, as the tenant, are not obligated to the association, however, you can challenge the landlord's imposition of the fines against you, under the theory that there is no proof that they have been committed by you, and that it is a breach of the implied covenant of good faith in your rental agreement
to refuse to permit you the opportunity to challenge the fines, while simultaneously imposing them against your contract. For this, you would have to sue the landlord in court -- or refuse to pay, and then defend any unlawful detainer/eviction
action based upon the fines being unsupported by any evidence.
Like it our not, this means that if you want to avoid the penalties/fines, then you will have to start pushing back against the landlord, who in turn will either have to authorize you to defend against them with the association, or sue you (or visa versa).
Please let me know if I can be of further assistance.