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Law Educator, Esq.
Law Educator, Esq., Lawyer
Category: Real Estate Law
Satisfied Customers: 110470
Experience:  Licensed attorney practicing landlord-tenant, land use and other real estate law and litigation.
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I'm a somewhat unusual situation. I'm a landlord. I rented

Customer Question

Hi. I'm a somewhat unusual situation. I'm a landlord. I rented 2/3 of my primary residence, my home, to people 10 months ago and have continued living with my fiance in the separate, but attached, mother-in-law apartment on the bottom floor of my home. The people I've rented to have on several occasions either broken our lease or lied to me in an effort to benefit economically at my expense. They have also harassed my fiance and me and otherwise violated our contract. They now give indication they will not pay their 11 month's rent but will try and use their security deposit as the 11th rent, with the final rental payment (12th month) already prepaid. Can you please tell me what rights and remedies I have? Thanks.
Submitted: 7 months ago.
Category: Real Estate Law
Expert:  Law Educator, Esq. replied 7 months ago.
Thank you for your question. I look forward to working with you to provide you the information you are seeking for educational purposes only.
Under CA law, they cannot decide to use their security deposit for their last month's rent. The security deposit is for damage to the property and it is up to the landlord how it would be used. You have grounds to give them the 3 day notice of eviction for non-payment of rent and if they do not pay the rent, you can file suit for unlawful detainer to evict them even if the 12th month is already paid.
The situation is no different than any other landlord tenant case. They are not paying rent, they do not have the right to use their security deposit for rent, so you give them written 3 day notice to pay or leave and if they refuse, then you can sue for unlawful detainer. The security deposit is for damage, not for rent unless the landlord chooses to apply it to rent at the landlord's discretion.
Customer: replied 7 months ago.
How long would eviction proceedings take typically? For example, if I filed UD on April 3, when might expect to be able to have them removed? Also, our lease explicitly states rent payments made after the first of the mo the are delinquent. They don't incur extra charges on late payments until the sixth of the month. So they always make sure to pay right on the sixth each month. Can I file UD on the 2nd if rent isn't paid? Or do I need to wait until the 6th? Thanks Chris.
Expert:  Law Educator, Esq. replied 7 months ago.
Thank you for your reply.
A UD suit can take about 14 days, they have 5 days to answer the suit and appear in court from date you serve them and the court, depending on their calendar hears the case and by the time the sheriff can be used for forcible eviction it is about 14-20 days.

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