BILL ANALYSIS                                                                                                                                                                                                    Ó



                                                                      



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          |SENATE RULES COMMITTEE            |                   AB 588|
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                                SPECIAL CONSENT


          Bill No:  AB 588
          Author:   V. Manuel Pérez (D)
          Amended:  As introduced
          Vote:     21

           
           SENATE JUDICIARY COMMITTEE  :  5-0, 06/14/11
          AYES:  Evans, Harman, Blakeslee, Corbett, Leno

           ASSEMBLY FLOOR  :  72-0, 03/31/11 - See last page for vote


           SUBJECT  :    Tenancy:  victims of domestic violence

           SOURCE  :     Author


           DIGEST  :    This bill amends an existing law so that a 
          tenant who is a victim of domestic violence has more time 
          to provide notice of intent to terminate a lease early.  
          This bill provides that upon informing the landlord of 
          intent to terminate a tenancy because he or she is a victim 
          of domestic violence, sexual assault, or stalking, the 
          tenant must also provide the landlord with a substantiating 
          court order or police report, as specified, that was issued 
          or written within the last 180 days. (Existing law requires 
          the order or report to have been issued or written within 
          the last 60 days.)

           ANALYSIS  :    Existing law defines the rights and duties of 
          landlord and tenants, including presumptions regarding the 
          terms of the hiring, the lawful means of terminating a 
          lease or rental agreements, and the remedies available to 
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          the respective parties in the event of a breach of a lease 
          or rental agreement.  (Civ. Code Sec. 1940 et seq.)  

          Existing law provides that if a tenant or lessee of real 
          property breaches the lease and abandons the property 
          before the end of the term, the landlord may deem the lease 
          terminated and seek damages, or continue to perform under 
          the lease and seek rent as it becomes due.  (Civ. Code Sec. 
          1951.2;  250 LLC v. Photopoint Corp.  (2005) 131 Cal.App.4th 
          703.) 

          Existing law allows a tenant to terminate his or her 
          tenancy if the tenant, or a household member, was the 
          victim of domestic violence, sexual assault, or stalking.  
          The notice to terminate a tenancy must be in writing, with 
          one of the following attached: (1) copy of a temporary 
          restraining order or emergency protective order, as 
          specified; or (2) copy of a written report by a peace 
          officer, as specified. (Civ. Code Sec. 1946.7.)

          Existing law requires the notice to terminate tenancy to be 
          given within 60 days of the date that any order was issued, 
          or within 60 days of the date that any written report was 
          made, or the time period otherwise required for termination 
          of tenancy. (Civ. Code Sec. 1946.7.)

          This bill increases the time period in which a tenant may 
          provide a notice to terminate tenancy from 60 to 180 days 
          after the date of an order, or written report, as 
          specified.

           FISCAL EFFECT  :    Appropriation:  No   Fiscal Com.:  No   
          Local:  No

           SUPPORT  :   (Verified  6/15/11)

          American Civil Liberties Union
          Apartment Association
          California Southern Cities
          California Commission on the Status of Women
          California Partnership to End Domestic Violence
          California Narcotic Officers' Association
          California Police Chiefs Association
          California Rural Legal Assistance Foundation

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          Crime Victims United of California
          Family Violence Law Center
          Housing Rights Center
          Junior Leagues of California State Public Affairs Committee
          La Casa de las Madres
          National Housing Law Project
          Western Center on Law & Poverty
          WomanHaven, Inc.


           ARGUMENTS IN SUPPORT  :    According to the author:

               California provides victims of domestic violence with 
               certain protections.  First, a victim can petition to 
               be released early from her lease if she presents a 
               copy of a police report or restraining order to her 
               landlord within 60 days of it having been issued.  
               Secondly, a tenant can get the exterior locks changed 
               of her dwelling if a request is made in writing and 
               she has a copy of a police report or restraining order 
               that is no more than 180 days old.

               However, the current 60 day limitation has been an 
               obstacle for many victims.  In some instances the 
               perpetrator is arrested, the victim feels safe within 
               the rental unit assuming the perpetrator will be in 
               jail for a long period of time.  By the time the 
               victim has learned of the perpetrator's release, more 
               than 60 days have gone by.  In other instances, the 
               perpetrator disappears for a small period of time 
               after being served with a restraining order, only to 
               return and terrorize the victim after the 60 day 
               limitation has passed.  The victim must now break the 
               lease and face financial hardship or wait out the 
               terms of the lease agreement, and live in fear of the 
               perpetrator breaking into the residence and causing 
               harm.  This is especially applicable for victims who 
               do not live/share a rental unit with the perpetrator.

               A change to 180 days for early lease termination 
               recognizes that not every case of domestic violence is 
               the same.  ?  There are at least 13 states Ýthat] have 
               documentation requirements that are less restrictive 
               than California or have no time restrictions at all on 

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               the documentation needed to end the lease.


           ASSEMBLY FLOOR  :  72-0, 03/31/11
          AYES:  Achadjian, Allen, Ammiano, Atkins, Beall, Bill 
            Berryhill, Block, Blumenfield, Bonilla, Bradford, 
            Brownley, Buchanan, Butler, Charles Calderon, Carter, 
            Cedillo, Chesbro, Conway, Cook, Davis, Dickinson, Eng, 
            Feuer, Fletcher, Fong, Fuentes, Furutani, Galgiani, 
            Garrick, Gatto, Gordon, Grove, Hagman, Halderman, Hall, 
            Harkey, Hayashi, Roger Hernández, Hill, Huber, Hueso, 
            Huffman, Jeffries, Jones, Knight, Lara, Logue, Bonnie 
            Lowenthal, Ma, Mendoza, Miller, Mitchell, Monning, 
            Morrell, Nestande, Nielsen, Norby, Olsen, Pan, Perea, V. 
            Manuel Pérez, Portantino, Silva, Solorio, Swanson, 
            Torres, Valadao, Wagner, Wieckowski, Williams, Yamada, 
            John A. Pérez
          NO VOTE RECORDED:  Alejo, Campos, Donnelly, Gorell, 
            Mansoor, Skinner, Smyth, Vacancy


          RJG:nl  6/24/11   Senate Floor Analyses 

                         SUPPORT/OPPOSITION:  SEE ABOVE

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