Tag Archives: Relocation

What Constitutes a Qualified Tenant under the LARSO

Recently, the California Courts of Appeal reviewed a case that looked into who can be a qualified tenant under the Los Angeles Rent Stabilization Ordinance. City of Los Angeles v. Superior Court (Wade) offers an interesting look at who may be considered disabled for purposes of determining a “qualified tenant.”

The definition of who is a “qualified tenant” is an important distinction under Los Angeles’ rent control ordinance because a qualified tenant is entitled to a higher relocation amount than an “eligible tenant.” A qualified tenant includes a tenant who is “disabled.”

Here, the Tenant had rented an unpermitted room as an apartment unit from the Landlord. In 2012, the City of Los Angeles issued a Substandard Order requiring the Landlord to evict the Tenant. The Landlord filed a Declaration of Intent to Evict in Order to Comply with the City’s Order. In response, the City’s relocation services provider determined that the Tenant was disabled and was considered a “qualified tenant” entitled to $18,300 to relocate. The Landlord appealed the decision, and the City found that the Tenant was not a “qualified tenant” and only entitled to $9,650 in relocation.

The Tenant argued that he had an “orthopedic disability impairing personal mobility.” The City had found that the Tenant was working part time as an actor and did not require special care or facilities in his home. The Tenant filed a writ, and at trial, the Court found that the tenant was a “qualified tenant.”

The LARSO defines a “qualified tenant” as a person who is handicapped as defined in Section 50072 of the California Health & Safety Code or disabled as defined by Title 42 of the United States Code Section 423.

Health & Safety Code Section 50072 states: “Handicapped means a family in which the head of the household is suffering from an orthopedic disability impairing personal mobility or a physical disability affecting his or her ability to obtain employment or a single person with such a physical disability, where the family or person requires special care or facilities in the home.”

Here, on appeal, the Court found that although the Tenant may have suffered a “disability,” because he was single and not a head of household, the disability required “special care or facilities in the home.” The Court found that the tenant did not require special care or facilities in his home. In reviewing Section 50072, the Court found that there are two categories: a head of household and a single person.

In sum, the Court of Appeals found that the Tenant was not eligible to be a “qualified tenant.”

This case is important for Los Angeles landlords who are required under the LARSO to pay relocation. If you have questions regarding what constitutes a “qualified tenant” or “eligible tenant,” please contact Anthony at 818-839-5220.


Renting Residential Units in a Commercial Space

A recent news article highlighted what could happen when a landlord rents a unit for residential use in a commercial structure. A landlord in South Los Angeles was required to pay $141,000 to nearly a dozen tenants who were living in an old medical center. The landlord was renting examination rooms as living units, some of them without windows. Tenants were required to move after the City of Los Angeles Fire Department issued a notice requiring that they had to leave citing unsafe conditions.

Los Angeles landlords should be wary to rent out units that are not lawful. As a result of the tenants being required to move out, they were entitled to relocation fees.

The ABC news report can be found here.

Relocation Assistance in the City of Glendale

In a previous post, I discussed Glendale’s Just Cause Eviction Ordinance. In this post, I will be discussing a smaller piece of Glendale’s Just Cause Eviction Ordinance: relocation assistance. Under the Glendale Just Cause Eviction Ordinance, relocation is required under the following circumstances:

  • When the unit is permanently removed from the rental housing market or requires eviction for demolition;
  • When the unit requires an eviction for major rehabilitation;
  • When the landlord evicts a tenant for occupancy by the landlord, the landlord’s spouse, grandparents, brother, sister, father-in-law, mother-in-law, son-in-law, daughter-in-law, children, or parents, a resident manager or a tenant who requires case management or counseling as part of the tenancy;
  • When the landlord evicts pursuant to a government entity’s Order to Vacate; or
  • When the landlord evicts due to a condominium conversion or commercial use of the property.

There are several exemptions to Glendale’s Just Cause Eviction Ordinance, including:

  • When the tenant received actual written notice prior to entering into a written or oral agreement that an application to subdivide the property or convert the building to a condominium was on file with or had been approved by the City of Glendale;
  • When evicting a resident manager to replace him or her with an other resident manager;
  • When evicting a tenant pursuant to a Order to Vacate due to a hazardous condition caused by a natural disaster or act of God.
  • The tenant receives relocation assistance from another source equal to or greater than the amount required under Glendale’s Ordinance.

A landlord must make the payment to the named tenant, but if there is more than one named tenant, each tenant receives a pro-rata share. Payment must be made within 15 days of service of the Notice causing termination of the tenancy or it may be put into an scrow account to be disbursed upon move-out.

The amount required is two times the amount of the current fair market rent established by HUD plus $1,000. For 2014, the HUD amounts are $896 for an efficiency; $1,083 for a 1 bedroom; $1,398 for a two bedroom; $1,890 for a three bedroom, and $2,106 for a four bedroom.