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CalAttorney2, Attorney
Category: Landlord-Tenant
Satisfied Customers: 10244
Experience:  I am a civil litigation attorney with experience representing both landlords and tenants in residential and commercial property disputes.
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I want to sue my landlord up rights and helping other

Customer Question

I want to sue my landlord for retaliation for sticking up for my rights and helping other tenants stick up for theirs. The landlord uses the threat of eviction to force tenants to sign lease more that one addendum not approved by HUD, obtained twice my tenant credit file and did a criminal history search without my signed consent. Forged my signature on a lease addendum, and many more things like entering tenants mailboxes, and they have retaliated against me, by owing me over $500 for two years, failing to make repairs, that were dangerous to me because I am handicapped and kept tripping. When I complained about the bed bug addendum, the manager moved the person with bed bugs next door to me. When I wouldn't sign the $20 late fee addendum all the sudden she didn't cash my rent check until the end of the month and it bounced. After making a complaint about giving a 24 hour notice on an inspection at 6pm and stating the inspection was at 9 am. The manager said that the person who did the inspection said, to give me a lease violation for storing garbage on my patio, and gave me a lease violation and the person who did the inspection wrote the tenant upstairs was throwing garbage on my patio and she had to remove the lease violation.
JA: When it comes to landlord-tenant issues, accurate information is key. Because laws vary from state to state, could you tell me what state is this in?
Customer: California
JA: Have you consulted a lawyer yet?
Customer: I wrote to one attorney, he never responded
JA: Is there anything else important you think the Landlord-Tenant Lawyer should know?
Customer: These practices are not just happening to me but to all of the tenants.
JA: OK. Got it. I'm sending you to a secure page on JustAnswer so you can place the $5 fully-refundable deposit now. While you're filling out that form, I'll tell the Landlord-Tenant Lawyer about your situation and then connect you two.
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Landlord-Tenant
Expert:  N Cal Atty replied 1 year ago.

I am sorry to hear this.

In which town is the property located?

Is this a Section 8 rental?

Have you complained to HUD or anyone other than the landlord?

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
It is a section 8/LIHTC new construction property and I have complained to Mr. Azumbrado, director of HUD over California and Nevada, HUD in Washington D.C,, the regional director of HUD, who passed it to CAHI, and Congressman's Swalwell's Office tried to get the complaints to the right person to see the complaint was answered, but it never has been. The first complaint I made was about management wanting $33 for a tenant credit report after I had lived here 20 years and said if tenant's didn't pay it they would be evicted. So I wrote Mr. Azumbrado in San Francisco and told him about it and asked if I could be evicted for refusing. He told me they really didn't want a credit report they wanted a criminal history, all the other tenants had paid the money and they were willing to allow me to make payments. He said they were allowed to charge a nominal amount for the criminal histories. I wrote him back and said I thought my letter was clear, but I guess it wasn't. I wasn't asking to make payments, I said I wasn't doing it, and the Public Housing Authority is allowed to charge the owner a nominal amount but in no ways could it be passed on to the tenants. HUD has never responded to a complaint since he got caught lying in writing. They ran the criminal history on me anyways even though I didn't sign, They got a report from National Tenant Network twice. Once they made it appear as if I was moving to another apartment in the complex. One of the managers gave me a copy of one of the reports. Eden Housing had always denied they had done it. I had no credit, no late rents, no tenant complaints, no lease violations and no criminal history found. They threatened every time I didn't sign the crime free addendum they would evict me. I told them show me the approval letter and I will sign it, because HUD's counsel denied the Drug free addendum and said there was no avenue under the law in which they could approve it or any variation of it. The precise language in the lease agreement had to be used. When the property manager threaten to evict me, I told him not to threaten me with a good time, to go to his office, do not pass go, do not collect $200 and start that paper work immediately, I can't wait to go before a judge and hear him tell you to stop doing this and you will never allow that to happen because you want to keep doing what you know you are not allowed to do. You will never proceed with an eviction you can't win, and of course he didn't try and evict me. I found a lease addendum in my file that was forged and I didn't get a threatening letter from the property manager this year and told him I wanted to see my file and see if there were any more forged documents. He told me there was only one file and there was no tenant report in it and when I went through the file, the crime free addendum had my signature cut and pasted on the document. There was no original one signed in ink. The cut and pasted signature had the occupancy specialist signature on it too, except he wasn't the one that gave them to tenants to sign. It was an occupancy specialist after him that did it. So this new manager admitted there were two files and I asked him to give me another appointment to go through that file, and he said to give him about a week he had to go through it first. They finally paid me the $500 they owed me for over 2 years. They have retaliated against me numerous times for standing up for my rights and helping other tenants stand up for theirs and helping tenants get out of wrongful unlawful detainers that were filed against them. This has gone on since 2009 and we have gone through at least 10 managers. I have copies of the letters I have sent and copies of letters sent back to me, but most of the managers didn't respond to the letters. Michael Dismuke the property supervisor responded to some but, I caught him lying so he didn't want to put anything in writing. No one really wanted to put anything in writing, but none of them said, I was wrong or ever accused me of lying about anything. Like I said, once I caught the Director of HUD lying in writing, no one would address any of the complaints. HUD knows they are doing it, they are turning a blind eye. These people own at least 130 low income housing complexes. If they are doing it here they are doing it in all of them. I have helped many people not get evicted, but I don't know everyone and I never seek anyone, if they come to me I will help them, but I don't look for them. It is very time consuming to help the tenants that come to me. What they are doing is outrageous, they used our spare key to go through our mailboxes. To make tenants homeless wrongfully, that have children, I can't even put into words how angry it makes me. They do these things under the threat of eviction and tenants don't know what they are doing is wrong and they sign. This addendum says it supersedes the contact, and one time they put in it that tenants hold them harmless.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
They told this poor Mexican lady that couldn't speak English if she didn't sign a 30 day notice to vacate the Sheriff's Department would come and move her forcefully from the apartment. She was so scared she signed it. I wrote a letter to the property supervisor and told him he couldn't do that to her and she takes it back she wasn't moving out. She is still here, but one day she came home and there was a detective standing in her front room, he told her he tried the door and it wasn't locked so he came in, she locked it though, management had to have let the detective in. Regardless he didn't have a warrant, he couldn't just go in because the door was unlocked.
Expert:  N Cal Atty replied 1 year ago.

In which town is the rental located?

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
San Leandro Ca. I don't know if it is going to send all that I wrote
Expert:  CalAttorney2 replied 1 year ago.

Dear Customer,

Thank you for using our forum. My name is***** am another expert on the site, your prior expert opted out, and I hope that I can assist you today.

While you cannot sue on behalf of other tenants in your unit, if I understand your post above, you are primarily concerned with an abusive landlord that is taking advantage of tenants in this HUD (government subsidized) housing unit.

You can report bad landlords directly to the Federal Housing and Urban Development department here: HUD can investigate your complaint and take further action (usually administrative action directly against the landlord and/or their management for abusive practices).

Filing a complaint with HUD will protect you from "retaliatory" action by the landlord for a minimum of 6 months under CA law.

You can also sue the landlord yourself for your own claims (so anything the landlord has done to you). CA has a relatively high small claims jurisdictional limit, so you can sue for up to $10,000.00 in small claims court quickly and easily without requiring an attorney. This link to the CA Courts website provides you with information and all of the forms you will require:

(You can provide the same information to your neighbors, they can sue the landlord as well, but they must bring their own claims. Similarly, if they are willing to make reports to the HUD (they can do it online using the link I provided to you above), the more reports that the HUD receives the more diligently the HUD will investigate.)