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Legal Information: California

Housing Laws

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Laws current as of January 11, 2024

What housing laws can protect me if I need to break my lease?

There is a housing law in California that allows you (the tenant) to terminate your lease before it expires if you, a member of your household, or an immediate family member is a victim of any of the following crimes:

You will not be considered to have violated (breached) your lease if you properly terminate your lease under this law.2

Note: If you are a victim of one of these crimes mentioned above, and you are not asking to terminate your lease, there still may be reasons why a landlord can terminate your tenancy. To read what the law says about when a landlord can terminate a victim’s tenancy, go to our Selected California Statutes page. If you have questions about your housing rights, you can get information on an anti-discrimination law called the Fair Housing Act here and information on basic tenants’ rights with contact info for legal assistance here.

1 Cal.Civ.Code § 1946.7(a)
2 Cal.Civ.Code § 1946.7(f)