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SIGNIFICANT CALIFORNIA LAWSUITS*

Rental Housing Lawsuits
California Repository on Legal Action

 

LAWSUITS BY SUBJECT (QUICK LINKS)

 

* Local mandate coverage through CalRHA’s local affiliates and the state. For a list of our local affiliates please CLICK HERE.

State of California

DATE FILED: August 13, 2021
ATTORNEY FOR PLAINTIFFS: FisherBroyles LLP
PLAINTIFFS: California Rental Housing Association (CalRHA), Mary Montano and Trang Ho
DEFENDANTS: Gavin Newsom, Rob Bonta, and DOES 1-20

 

AFFILIATES IMPACTED: AAGLA, AAOC, BPOA, EBRHA, NCRPA, NVPOA, SBRPA, SCRHA, SPOSFI

 

FILING INFORMATION: US District Court Eastern District of California, Case No. 2:21-cv-01394-JAM-JDP, First Amended Complaint for Declaratory and Injunctive Relief, and Damages

 

CLAIMS:
  • Violation of the Due Process Clause of the US Constitution. Precludes a landlord from contesting that certification and denies the landlord a hearing. This scheme violates the USB Supreme Court’s longstanding teaching that ordinarily no man can be a judge in his own case consistent with the Due Process Clause.
  • Violation of the Takings Clause of the US Constitution. the taking is not for a public use or purpose. The
    moratorium’s express purpose and effect are to benefit “a particular class of identifiable individuals” — namely, tenants. Provides no immediate or adequate mechanism for compensating owners for the loss of their property rights.
  • Violation of the Contracts Clause of the US Constitution. AB 832 unilaterally rewrites all rental agreements within the State to eliminate the contractual right to repossess units for nonpayment of rent, without any attempt to tie such wholesale revisions to the COVID-19 pandemic. Defendants’ conduct in adopting and enforcing that law has deprived and, unless enjoined, will continue to deprive owners of their rights, privileges, and immunities secured by the United States Constitution and/or laws of the United States to which owners are entitled.

 

Alameda County

DATE FILED: March 1, 2022
ATTORNEY FOR PLAINTIFFS: Zacks, Patterson & Freedman
PLAINTIFFS: Housing Providers of America (HPOA), and Five Individual Owners
DEFENDANTS: Alameda County, Alameda County Board of Supervisors, City of Oakland, and Oakland City Council

 

AFFILIATES IMPACTED: BPOA, EBRHA

 

FILING INFORMATION: US District Court for the Northern District of California, Case #42 U.S.C § 1983; C.C.P § 1085, Complaint for Damages; Petition for Writ and Reqeust For Immediate Stay, March 1, 2022.

 

CLAIMS:
  • Violation of 5th Amendment to the US Constitution. Prohibition of the taking of private property for public use without just compensation.
  • Inverse Condemnation. Takings without just compensation and violate Plantiffs’ rights protected by the California Constitution.
  • Violation of Due Process. Violation of substantive and procedural due process rights under the US Constitution.
  • Violation of Equal Protection. Violates right to equal protection of the laws, on their face and as applied.
  • Writ of Mandate. Authorizes the Cout to set aside public agency decisions involving a prejudicial abuse of discretion or error of law.
 
MEDIA COVERAGE

Property Owners Sue Oakland, Alameda County to End Eviction Moratorium, March 1, 2022, Bob Egelko, SF Chronicle

East Bay Landlords Sue to End Eviction Moratoriums in Oakland and Alameda County, March 3, 2022, Darin BondGraham, Oaklandside.org

Landlords Sue to Overturn COVID Eviction Bans, March 4, 2022, Marisa Kendall, The San Jose Mercury News


 

Los Angeles County

INITIAL FILING DATE: June 11, 2020
ATTORNEY FOR PLAINTIFFS: Rutan & Tucker, LLP
PLAINTIFFS: Apartment Association of Greater Los Angeles
DEFENDANTS: City of Los Angeles, Mayor Garcetti, and the City Council

 

AFFILIATES IMPACTED: AAGLA

 

FILING(S) INFORMATION: US District Court for the Central District of California, Case No. 2:20-cv-05193-DDP-JEM Complaint for Declaratory and Injunctive Relief, June 11, 2020

Appeal from US District Court for the Central District of California, Case No. 220-cv-05193-DDP-JEM.

Petition for Writ of Certiorari, November 23, 2021, to review the judgement of the US Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit, in the California Supreme Court. 

 

CLAIMS:
  • Violation of the Contracts Clause of the US Constitution. The Eviction Moratorium and Rent Freeze Ordinances fundamentally upend the contratual bargains struck between Plantiff’s members and their tenants by effectively relieving the tenants of their obligation to pay rent and comply with certain other provisions of their leases, and leaving owners, like Plaintiff’s members, without any recourse for an undetermined period of time.
  • Violation of the Contracts Clause of the California Constitution. The City seeks to substantially impair the obligations of the existing lease and/or rental agreements without justificaion, and in direct violation of the Contracts Clause.
  • Violation of the Takings Clause of the Fifth Amendment to the US Constitution. The Ordinances force property owners and lessors to accept the occpuation of tenants without any payment of rent concurrent with the occupancies.
  • Violation of the Takings Clause of the California Constitution. Prohibiting Plaintiff’s members from rightfully collecting rent from their tenants in the State of California, in exchange for the tenants’ lawful possession of Plaintiff’s properties, despite other compliance measures being taken to satisfy the public health interests at the state and to financially compensate those affected by COVID-19, violates Plaintiff’s fundamental Constitutional rights.
  • Violation of the Due Process Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment. The Ordinances deprive Plaintiff’s members’ of their rights and liberties in the use of their properties…and specifically the unreasonable prohibition on the collection of rent and termination of rightful eviction processes.
  • Preemption by State Law. Prohibits property owners from serving eviction notices and/or filing unlawful detainer actions in various circumstances—and providing for penalties against owners who make such communications—the Eviction Moratorium conflicts with the litigation privilege set forth in California Civil Code section 47.
  • Violation of the Tenth Amendment to the US Constitution. The City mandated that property owners allow tenants to continue to occupy rental units without paying rent, and without providing any mechanism for owners to be made whole. Such a mandate…deprived Plantiff’s members of all economically beneficial use of their properties without just compensation.

 

MEDIA COVERAGE

Los Angeles’ Largest Landlord Group Requests Injunction Over Eviction, Rent Freeze MoratoriumSeptember 23, 2020, Evan Symon, California Globe.

Landlord Organizaiton Appeals Judge’s Ruling to Let LA Eviction Moratorium StandDecember 7, 2020, City News Service, WeHoville.com 

 

CASE PROGRESSION

November 13, 2020: Judgement entered by Federal Judge in Los Angeles. Rejection of prelimary injunction. [Read opinion here.]

August 25, 2021: Judgement entered, No. 20-56251, United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals. “Appellate panel upheld the trial court’s refusal to grant injunctive relief against the moraotirum on the basis that the landlords were unlikely to succeed on the merits of their Contracts Clause challenge.” [Read opinion here.]

March 11, 2022: Brief in Opposition for the City of Los Angeles. Petition denied by United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals. [Read opinion here.]


 

Los Angeles County

INITIAL FILING DATE: March 7, 2022
ATTORNEY FOR PLAINTIFFS: Ruttan & Tucker, LLP
PLAINTIFFS: Apartment Association of Greater Los Angeles and the Apartmentment Owners Association of California, Inc.
DEFENDANTS: County of Los Angeles and Does 1-25

 

AFFILIATES IMPACTED: AAGLA

 

FILING INFORMATION: Superior Court of the State of California for the County of Los Angeles, Central Justice Center, Case No. 22STCV08225, Complaint for Declaratory and Injunctive Relief to Enjoin Enforcement of County of Los Angeles’ Renewed COVID-19 Eviction Ban

 

CLAIMS:
  • Procedural Due Process – Fourteenth Amendment of the US Constitution. Defendants are depriving property owners of their property rights without providing an adequate procedural remedy by implementing the Renewed Eviction Ban’s provisions foreclosing property owners from commencing or prosecuting eviction proceedings upon the submission of a tenant’s self-certification.
  • Substantive Due Process – Fourteenth Amendment of the US Constitution. In the absence of declaratory and injunctive relief, property owners will continue to be irreparably harmed and to be subjected to this deprivation of rights guaranteed to them by the United States Constitution.
  • Void for Vagueness – Fourteenth Amendment of the US Constitution. In the absence of declaratory and injunctive relief, property owners will continue to be irreparably harmed and to be subjected to this deprivation of rights guaranteed to them by the United States Constitution.
  • Declaratory Relief Code of Civil Procedure § 1060. A declaration is necessary and appropriate at this time in order that Plaintiffs and Defendants may ascertain their rights and duties with respect to the validity and enforceability of the Renewed Eviction Ban.

 

MEDIA COVERAGE

Apartment Owners Challenge LA County Renewed Eviction Ban, March 8, 2022, City News Service, The Antelope Valley Times


 

San Diego County

INITIAL FILING DATE: May 13, 2021
ATTORNEY FOR PLAINTIFFS: FisherBroyles LLP
PLAINTIFFS: Southern California Rental Housing Association
DEFENDANTS: County of San Diego, Board of Supervsiors of San Diego County, Does 1-20 inclusive.

 

AFFILIATES IMPACTED: SCRHA

 

FILING INFORMATION: US District Court Southern District of California, Case No. ’21CV0912 DMS DEB, Complaint for Declaratory and Injunctive Relief, and Damages, May 13, 2021.

 

CLAIMS:
  • Violation of the Contracts Clause of the US Constitutions. Ordinance substantially impairs the contractual relationship between rental housing owners and their tenants.
  • Violation of the Takings Clause of the US Constitution. Ordinance effects a per se taking of rental housing owners’ properties because it indefinitely grants tenant near-unqualified access to and use of the properties.
  • Violation of Article XI, Section 7 of the California Constitution. Ordinance has no lawful application outside the unincorporated areas of the County. Plaintiff’s members with rental housing properties in cities within the County are immediately harmed, an will continue to be harmed by an Ordinance that constitutionally should not apply to them or their properties.

 

MEDIA COVERAGE

San Diego Eviction Ban Survives Legal ChallengeJuly 28, 2021, Phillip Molnar, The San Diego Union-Tribune.

 

CASE PROGRESSION

June 1, 2021: Denial of requiest for temporary restraining order to stop eviction moraotirum from being enforced for 18 days.

July 27, 2021: Denial of SCRHA motion, citing the temporary nature and public interest. Appeal to the 9th Circuit Court filed.

[Need more info: Appeal denied, upheld judge’s decision. Eviction moratoirum subsequently expired. SCRHA filed new lawsuit to prevent future similar eviction moratoriums being put into place.]

San Francisco City

INITIAL FILING DATE:
ATTORNEY FOR PLAINTIFFS:
PLAINTIFFS: San Francisco Apartment Association (SFAA); Coalition for Better Housing; San Francisco Association of Realtors; Small Property Owners San Francisco Institute (SPOSFI)
DEFENDANTS: City of San Francisco

 

AFFILIATES IMPACTED: SPOSFI

 

FILING INFORMATION: US District Court for

 

CLAIMS:

Relocation Ordinance (City of Santa Barbara)

DATE FILED: February 25, 2022
ATTORNEY FOR PLAINTIFFS: FisherBroyles LLP
PLAINTIFFS: Santa Barbara Rental Property Association & Nogara LLC
DEFENDANTS: City of Santa Barbara, Santa Barbara City Council, City Attorney, Does 1-20

 

AFFILIATES AFFECTED: SBRPA

 

FILING INFORMATION: US District Court Central District of California, Case No: __________, Federal Civil Rights Complaint for Equitable Relief and Damages

 

CLAIMS:
  • Facial and As-Applied Violation of the Contracts Clause. The Relocation Payment Law impairs existing contracts, including specifically Nogara’s lease contract, in violation of the Contracts Clause.
  • Facial and As-Applied Violation of the Takings Clause of the US Constitution. The relocation payment requirement violates the Public Use and Just Compensation Clauses and is unconstitutional.
  • Facial and As-Applied Violation of the Unconstitutional Conditions Doctrine. The Relocation Payment Law fails the “nexus” and “rough proportionality” tests of Nollan and Dolan, and therefore violates the unconstitutional conditions doctrine.
  • Unlawful Relocation Payment Amount. The Relocation Payment Law’s relocation payment amount is unlawful because it is arbitrary, capricious and/or entirely lacking in evidentiary support.

ABOUT US

The California Rental Housing Association (CalRHA) represents almost 24,000 members totaling more than 653,000 units, made up of small, medium and large rental housing owners throughout the State of California.

Our purpose is to advocate in the best interest of the rental housing industry and collectively address industry needs.

GET IN TOUCH

BEFORE REACHING OUT TO US, PLEASE READ:
All information provided by CalRHA is intended for general information only, and should not be construed as legal, tax, or financial advice applicable to your particular situation. CalRHA was established to serve the needs of property owners, managers and other stakeholders involved in providing quality rental housing to California residents.

LEAVE US A MESSAGE:
(916) 656-5959 or info@cal-rha.org

1121 L Street, Suite 105
Sacramento, CA 95814

TERMS & CONDITIONS

As a property/owner member of CalRHA you are entitled to all membership benefits and services at member rates, which also includes National Apartment Association (NAA) rates.

Additionally, as a supplier member of CalRHA, $30 of your annual membership dues goes towards a one-year subscription to units Magazine and is non-deductible for association dues payment.

In compliance with the Omnibus Reconciliation Act of 1993, 70% of your annual membership dues goes towards lobbying expenses and is non-deductible for association dues payment.

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