Legal Information: California

Statutes: California

View all
Updated: 
January 5, 2024

1161.3 Termination of lease prohibited based upon acts of domestic violence, sexual assault, stalking, human trafficking, or abuse of elder or dependent adult; exceptions; limitation of landlord liability to other tenants; definition; forms

(a) For purposes of this section:

(1) “Abuse or violence” means domestic violence as defined in Section 6211 of the Family Code, sexual assault as defined in Section 1219, stalking as defined in Section 1708.7 of the Civil Code or Section 646.9 of the Penal Code, human trafficking as defined in Section 236.1 of the Penal Code, abuse of an elder or a dependent adult as defined in Section 15610.07 of the Welfare and Institutions Code, or any act described in paragraphs (6) to (8), inclusive, of subdivision (a) of Section 1946.7 of the Civil Code.

(2) “Documentation evidencing abuse or violence against the tenant, the tenant’s immediate family member, or the tenant’s household member” means any of the following:

(A) A temporary restraining order, emergency protective order, or protective order lawfully issued within the last 180 days pursuant to Section 527.6, Part 3 (commencing with Section 6240), Part 4 (commencing with Section 6300), or Part 5 (commencing with Section 6400) of Division 10 of the Family Code, Section 136.2 of the Penal Code, or Section 213.5 or 15657.03 of the Welfare and Institutions Code that protects the tenant, the tenant’s immediate family member, or the tenant’s household member from abuse or violence.

(B) A copy of a written report, written within the last 180 days, by a peace officer employed by a state or local law enforcement agency acting in the officer’s official capacity, stating that the tenant, the tenant’s immediate family member, or the tenant’s household member has filed a report alleging that they are a victim of abuse or violence.

(C)(i) Documentation from a qualified third party based on information received by that third party while acting in their professional capacity to indicate that the tenant, the tenant’s immediate family member, or the tenant’s household member is seeking assistance for physical or mental injuries or abuse resulting from an act of abuse or violence, which shall contain, in substantially the same form, the following:

Tenant Statement and Qualified Third Party Statement

under Code of Civil Procedure Section 1161.3

Part I. Statement By Tenant

I, [insert name of tenant], state as follows:

I, my immediate family member, or a member of my household, have been a victim of:

[insert one or more of the following: domestic violence, sexual assault, stalking, human trafficking, elder abuse, dependent adult abuse, a crime that caused bodily injury or death, a crime that included the exhibition, drawing, brandishing, or use of a firearm or other deadly weapon or instrument, or a crime that included the use or threat of force against the victim.]

The most recent incident(s) happened on or about:

[insert date or dates.]

The incident(s) was/were committed by the following person(s), with these physical description(s), if known and safe to provide:

[if known and safe to provide, insert name(s) and physical description(s).]

 

 

(signature of tenant)

(date)

Part II. Qualified Third Party Statement

I, [insert name of qualified third party], state as follows:

My business address and phone number are:

[insert business address and phone number.]

Check and complete one of the following:

____I meet the requirements for a sexual assault counselor provided in Section 1035.2 of the Evidence Code and I am either engaged in an office, hospital, institution, or center commonly known as a rape crisis center described in that section or employed by an organization providing the programs specified in Section 13835.2 of the Penal Code.

____I meet the requirements for a domestic violence counselor provided in Section 1037.1 of the Evidence Code and I am employed, whether financially compensated or not, by a domestic violence victim service organization, as defined in that section.

____I meet the requirements for a human trafficking caseworker provided in Section 1038.2 of the Evidence Code and I am employed, whether financially compensated or not, by an organization that provides programs specified in Section 18294 of the Welfare and Institutions Code or in Section 13835.2 of the Penal Code.____I meet the definition of “victim of violent crime advocate” provided in Section 1946.7 of the Civil Code and I am employed, whether financially compensated or not, by an agency or organization that has a documented record of providing services to victims of violent crime or provides those services under the auspices or supervision of a court or a law enforcement or prosecution agency.

____I am licensed by the State of California as a:

[insert one of the following: physician and surgeon, osteopathic physician and surgeon, registered nurse, psychiatrist, psychologist, licensed clinical social worker, licensed marriage and family therapist, or licensed professional clinical counselor.] and I am licensed by, and my license number is:

[insert name of state licensing entity and license number.]

The person who signed the Statement By Tenant above stated to me that they, a member of their immediate family, or a member of their household is a victim of:

[insert one or more of the following: domestic violence, sexual assault, stalking, human trafficking, elder abuse, dependent adult abuse, a crime that caused bodily injury or death, a crime that included the exhibition, drawing, brandishing, or use of a firearm or other deadly weapon or instrument, or a crime that included the use or threat of force against the victim.]

The person further stated to me the incident(s) occurred on or about the date(s) stated above.

 

__________

(signature of qualified third party)

(date)

(ii) The documentation may be signed by a person who meets the requirements for a sexual assault counselor, domestic violence counselor, a human trafficking caseworker, or a victim of violent crime advocate only if the documentation displays the letterhead of the office, hospital, institution, center, or organization, as appropriate, that engages or employs, whether financially compensated or not, this counselor, caseworker, or advocate.

(D) Any other form of documentation or evidence that reasonably verifies that the abuse or violence occurred.

(3) “Health practitioner” means a physician and surgeon, osteopathic physician and surgeon, psychiatrist, psychologist, registered nurse, licensed clinical social worker, licensed marriage and family therapist, or licensed professional clinical counselor.

(4) “Immediate family member” has the same meaning as defined in Section 1946.7 of the Civil Code.

(5) “Perpetrator of abuse or violence” means any of the following:

(A) The person against whom an order described in subparagraph (A) of paragraph (2) of subdivision (a) has been issued.

(B) The person who was named or referred to as causing the abuse or violence in the report described in subparagraph (B) of paragraph (2) of subdivision (a).

(C) The person who was named or referred to as causing the abuse or violence in the documentation described in subparagraph (C) of paragraph (2) of subdivision (a).

(D) The person who was named or referred to as causing the abuse or violence in the documentation described in subparagraph (D) of paragraph (2) of subdivision (a).

(6) “Qualified third party” means a health practitioner, domestic violence counselor, as defined in Section 1037.1 of the Evidence Code, a sexual assault counselor, as defined in Section 1035.2 of the Evidence Code, a human trafficking caseworker, as defined in Section 1038.2 of the Evidence Code, or a victim of violent crime advocate.

(7) “Tenant” means tenant, subtenant, lessee, or sublessee.

(8) “Tenant in residence” means a tenant who is currently residing in the unit and has full physical and legal access to the unit.

(9) “Victim of violent crime advocate” has the same meaning as defined in Section 1946.7 of the Civil Code.

(b)(1) A landlord shall not terminate a tenancy or fail to renew a tenancy based on an act of abuse or violence against a tenant, a tenant’s immediate family member, or a tenant’s household member if the landlord has received documentation evidencing abuse or violence against the tenant, the tenant’s immediate family member, or the tenant’s household member.

(2) Notwithstanding paragraph (1), a landlord may terminate a tenancy or fail to renew a tenancy based on an act of abuse or violence against a tenant, a tenant’s immediate family member, or a tenant’s household member even after receiving documentation of abuse or violence against the tenant, the tenant’s immediate family member, or the tenant’s household member if either of the following apply:

(A) The perpetrator of abuse or violence is a tenant in residence of the same dwelling unit as the tenant, the tenant’s immediate family member, or household member.

(B) Both of the following apply:

(i) The perpetrator of abuse or violence’s words or actions have threatened the physical safety of other tenants, guests, invitees, or licensees.

(ii) After expiration of a three-day notice requiring the tenant not to voluntarily permit or consent to the presence of the perpetrator of abuse or violence on the premises, the tenant continues to do so.

(c) Notwithstanding any provision in a lease to the contrary, a landlord shall not be liable to any other tenants for any action that arises due to the landlord’s compliance with this section.

(d) A defendant in an unlawful detainer action arising from a landlord’s termination of a tenancy or failure to renew a tenancy that is based on an act of abuse or violence against a tenant, a tenant’s immediate family member, or a tenant’s household member may raise an affirmative defense as follows:

(1) If the perpetrator of the abuse or violence is not a tenant in residence of the same dwelling unit as the tenant, the tenant’s immediate family member, or household member, then the defendant shall have a complete defense as to that cause of action, unless each clause of subparagraph (B) of paragraph (2) of subdivision (b) applies.

(2) If the perpetrator of the abuse or violence is a tenant in residence of the same dwelling unit as the tenant, the tenant’s immediate family member, or household member, the court shall proceed in accordance with Section 1174.27.

(e)(1) A landlord shall not disclose any information provided by a tenant under this section to a third party unless either of the following is true:

(A) The tenant has consented in writing to the disclosure.

(B) The disclosure is required by law or court order.

(2) A landlord’s communication with the qualified third party who provides documentation in order to verify the contents of that documentation is not a disclosure for purposes of this subdivision.

(f) The Judicial Council shall review its forms that may be used by a party to assert in the responsive pleading the grounds set forth in this section as an affirmative defense to an unlawful detainer action and, by January 1, 2025, make any changes to those forms that the Judicial Council deems necessary to conform them to this section.

WomensLaw serves and supports all survivors, no matter their sex or gender.