Just Cause For Eviction Ordinance (JCO)
Updated: Oct 2
If you own rental property in the City of Los Angeles, it may be subject to theJust Cause Ordinance(JCO). It prohibits terminations of tenancies without just cause and requires relocation assistance for no-fault evictions.
Rental Units Covered Under JCO
The JCO covers most residential properties in the City of Los Angeles that are not regulated by the City’s Rent Stabilization Ordinance (RSO).
In order to apply to a tenancy, it requires that the tenant either has lived in the same unit for at least six months or that their original lease expired, whichever comes first. According to this Tampa property management company, there are other specific exceptions to the JCO including, but not limited to, transient hotels, licensed care facilities, fraternity or sorority houses, owner’s roommate, cooperatives under certain circumstances, some non-profit facilities for the homeless or short-term treatment centers for substance abuse, and some properties owned by HACLA or the government. The JCO can apply to buildings that are newer than October 1, 1978. The JCO can apply to a property that contains only one single-family dwelling.
Legal Reasons for Eviction
Failure to pay rent
Failure to cure a violation of the rental agreement
Creating a nuisance or causing damage to the property
Using the rental unit for an illegal purpose
Failure to renew a similar rental agreement
Failure to provide the landlord with reasonable access to the rental unit
The person at the end of the lease term is a subtenant not approved by thelandlord
Tenant is not at-fault
The owner or immediate family member will move into the rental unit
Resident manager will move into the rental unit when required by law or by an affordable housing covenant or regulatory agreement
Demolition, substantial remodel, permanent removal from the rental market, or conversion to non-residential
Government order to vacate
HUD owns and is selling the property
Residential Hotel being converted or demolished
Conversion to affordable housing
Types of Evictions Requiring Payment of Tenant Relocation Assistance
Relocation assistance for tenants who rent a Single Family Dwelling (SFD) is one month’s rent if the landlord is a natural person who owns no more than 4 residential units and an SFD on a separate lot.A landlord can deduct a tenant’s unpaid rental debt from the relocation assistance payment.
All landlords of residential properties must provide a Notice of Renters’ Protections to tenants who begin or renew their tenancy on or after January 27, 2023. This notice must also be posted in an accessible common area of the property. Download the Protections Notice in English or Spanish. (Other languages will be available soon).
Evictions for Non-Payment of Rent
Applies to all RSO & JCO rental units. Effective March 27, 2023, landlords may not evict a tenant who falls behind in rent unless the tenant owes an amount higher than the Fair Market Rent (FMR). The FMR depends on the bedroom size of the rental unit. For example, if a tenant rents a 1-bedroom unit and the rent is $1,500, the landlord cannot evict the tenant since the rent owed is less than the FMR for a 1-bedroom unit.
Eviction Notices Filed with LAHD
Applies to all JCO & RSO rental properties – All eviction notices issued to tenants in the City of Los Angeles must be filed with LAHD within three (3) business days of service on the tenant. For more information, please click here.
When Can Rent Be Increased Under State Law AB1482
The JCO does not regulate rent increases, however, according to this Manteca property management company, state law AB 1482, the California Tenant Protection Act of 2019, may regulate the rent amount in buildings that are older than 15 years old.
Effective August 1, 2022 to July 31, 2023, the maximum allowable increase is 10%. Previously, from August 1, 2021 to July 31, 2022 the maximum annual increase for units subject to AB 1482 was 8.6%. (Annual rent increases are limited to no more than 5% plus the percentage change in the cost of living for the region in which the property is located, or 10% whichever is lower).
Properties not covered under AB 1482:
-Units that were constructed within the last 15 years (this applies on a rolling basis – i.e.. a unit constructed on January 1, 2006 is not covered as of January, 1 2020, but is covered on and after January 1, 2021).
-Units restricted by a deed, regulatory restrictions, or other recorded document limiting the affordability to low or moderate-income households.
-A two-unit property, provided the second unit was occupied by an owner of the property for the entire period of the tenancy.
-Single-family homes and condominiums are only exempt if both (A) and (B) apply:
(A) the property is not owned by one of the following:
(i) a real estate trust, or
(ii) a corporation, or
(iii) an LLC with at least one corporate member.
(B) The landlord notified the tenant in writing that the tenancy is not subject to the “just cause” and rent increase limitations as specifically described in Civil Code Sections 1946.2(e)(8)(B)(i) and 1947.12(d)(5)(B)(i).
-The limited exemption for single-family homes does not apply where there is more than one dwelling unit on the same lot, or any second residential unit in the building that cannot be sold separately from the subject unit (such as an in-law unit).
-Units that are already subject to the City’s RSO.
Rent Increases More Than 10%
Rental properties not subject to the RSO or AB1482 that receive a rent increase of more than 10% within 12 months and are unable to afford the rent increase have the option to receive relocation assistance to move out of their rental unit instead. The relocation amount is based on the bedroom size of the rental unit. Relocation assistance for tenants who rent a Single Family Dwelling (SFD) is one month’s rent if the landlord is a natural person who owns no more than four (4) residential units and a SFD on a separate lot in the City of Los Angeles.