Amended in Senate July 1, 2014

Amended in Assembly May 6, 2014

Amended in Assembly April 24, 2014

Amended in Assembly April 8, 2014

Amended in Assembly March 17, 2014

California Legislature—2013–14 Regular Session

Assembly BillNo. 1513


Introduced by Assembly Member Fox

January 15, 2014


An act to add and repeal Sectionsbegin delete 602.55 and 602.56end deletebegin insert 527.11 and 527.12end insert of thebegin delete Penalend delete Codebegin insert of Civil Procedureend insert, relating to residential property.

LEGISLATIVE COUNSEL’S DIGEST

AB 1513, as amended, Fox. Residential property: possession by declaration.

Existing law allows a plaintiff, upon motion, to have immediate possession of the premises of a manufactured home, mobilehome, or real property by a writ of possession issued by a court and directed to the sheriff of the county or marshal, for execution, where it appears to the satisfaction of the court, after a hearing on the motion, from the verified complaint and from any affidavits filed or oral testimony given by or on behalf of the parties, that the defendant resides out of state, has departed from the state, cannot, after due diligence, be found within the state, or has concealed himself or herself to avoid the service of summons.

Existing law provides that every person who willfully commits a trespass is guilty of a misdemeanor.

This bill wouldbegin delete, until January 1, 2018,end delete allowbegin delete a propertyend deletebegin insert anend insert ownerbegin delete, or an agent of the property owner,end delete of residential property in the Cities of Palmdale and Lancaster in the County of Los Angelesbegin insert or the City of Ukiah in the County of Mendocino, or an agent of the property ownerend insert, to register vacant real property with the local law enforcement agency and to execute, under penalty of perjury, a Declaration of Ownership of Residential Real Property. By expanding the scope of the crime of perjury, this bill would impose a state-mandated local program.

This bill wouldbegin insert furtherend insert allowbegin delete aend deletebegin insert theend insert property owner, or an agent of the property owner,begin delete of residential property in the Cities of Palmdale or Lancaster in the County of Los Angeles,end delete to file the Declaration of Ownership of Residential Real Property with thebegin delete district attorneyend deletebegin insert end insertbegin insertlocal law enforcement agencyend insert of the jurisdiction in which the property is located. The bill would require the property owner to post the filed declaration on the property listed in the declaration. The bill would require the local law enforcement agency with which the property is registered to respond as soon as practicable after being notified that an unauthorized person has been found on the property and take specified action, including requiring a person who is found on the property to produce written authorization to be on the property, andbegin delete advisingend deletebegin insert notifyingend insert any person who does not produce that authorization that he or she has 48 hours to obtain it, and is subject to arrest for trespass if he or she is subsequently found on the property without it. The bill wouldbegin delete provide thatend deletebegin insert allow the property owner, or an agent of the property owner, to file an action for a temporary restraining order and injunctive relief againstend insert a person who is found on the property not less than 48 hours afterbegin delete being so notified is guilty of trespass and, if convicted, is subject to imprisonment in a county jail not exceeding one year, or a fine not exceeding $1,000, or both that imprisonment and fineend deletebegin insert that person has been so notified. The bill would provide that a property owner, or an agent of the property owner, who files a declaration that includes false information regarding the right to possess the property is liable to any person who, as a result of the declaration, vacates the property, for damages, as specifiedend insert. By imposing new duties on local law enforcement agenciesbegin delete and by expanding the scope of the crime of trespassend delete this bill would create a state-mandated local program.

The bill would provide that its provisions apply only to one-unit to four-unit residences in the Cities of Palmdale and Lancaster in the County of Los Angelesbegin insert and the City of Ukiah in the County of Mendocino. This bill would provide that its provisions would be operative until January 1, 2018end insert.

This bill would make legislative findings and declarations as to the necessity of a special statute for the Cities of Palmdale and Lancaster in the County of Los Angelesbegin insert and the City of Ukiah in the County of Mendocinoend insert.

The California Constitution requires the state to reimburse local agencies and school districts for certain costs mandated by the state. Statutory provisions establish procedures for making that reimbursement.

This bill would provide that with regard to certain mandates no reimbursement is required by this act for a specified reason.

With regard to any other mandates, this bill would provide that, if the Commission on State Mandates determines that the bill contains costs so mandated by the state, reimbursement for those costs shall be made pursuant to the statutory provisions noted above.

Vote: majority. Appropriation: no. Fiscal committee: yes. State-mandated local program: yes.

The people of the State of California do enact as follows:

P3    1

SECTION 1.  

The Legislature finds and declares that the
2practice of squatting on vacant property is a public nuisance and
3is detrimental to the health, safety, and economy of local
4communities and to the rights of real property owners. The intent
5of this section is to provide a means tobegin delete deterend deletebegin insert preventend insert squattingbegin delete at
6an early stageend delete
begin insert in vacant residential real propertyend insert and to provide
7abegin delete second chanceend deletebegin insert timely and orderly procedureend insert for squatters to
8vacate the premises in lieu of arrest. The Legislature also declares
9this section not to be an abridgment of other statutes relating to
10trespass or civil eviction proceedings.

begin delete11

SEC. 2.  

Section 602.55 is added to the Penal Code, immediately
12following Section 602.5, to read:

13

602.55.  

end delete
14begin insert

begin insertSEC. 2.end insert  

end insert
begin insert

Section 527.11 is added to the Code of Civil Procedure,
15to read:

end insert
16begin insert

begin insert527.11.end insert  

end insert

(a) The owner or owner’s agent of vacant real property
17may register the property with the local law enforcement agency
18begin delete utilizingend deletebegin insert usingend insert the form contained in subdivision (a) of Section
19begin delete 602.56end deletebegin insert 527.12end insert.

P4    1(1) The registration shall be signed under penalty of perjury and
2state that the property is vacant and is not authorized to be occupied
3by any person.

4(2) The registration shall be accompanied with a statement
5providing the name, address, and telephone number at which the
6owner can be contacted within a 24-hour period and a statement
7that either the law enforcement agency or a licensed private security
8services company has been retained to comply with the inspection
9and reporting provisions of this section, together with a copy of
10any agreement or contract to perform those services.

11(b) The owner or the owner’s agent shall register the vacant
12property no later than three days after the owner or owner’s agent
13learns that the property is vacant.

14(c) The owner or owner’s agent, immediately after authorizing
15a person to occupy the vacant property, shall do both of the
16following:

17(1) Issue a written authorization to the person authorized to
18occupy the property.

19(2) Notify the law enforcement agency where the property is
20registered and terminate the registration.

begin insert

21(d)  The owner or the owner’s agent, immediately upon the sale
22of the vacant property, shall notify the law enforcement agency
23where the property is registered that the property has been sold,
24and to terminate the registration.

end insert
begin delete

25(d)

end delete

26begin insert(e)end insert The licensed private security services company or law
27enforcement agency selected by the owner or owner’s agent
28pursuant to this section shall do both of the following:

29(1) Inspect the vacant property not less than once every three
30days.

31(2) Immediately notify the law enforcement agency with which
32the property is registered if any unauthorized person is found on
33the property.

begin delete

34(e)

end delete

35begin insert(f)end insert The law enforcement agency where the property is registered
36shall respond as soon as practicable after being notified pursuant
37to paragraph (2) of subdivisionbegin delete (d)end deletebegin insert (e)end insert that an unauthorized person
38is found on the property. The responding officer shall do all of the
39following:

P5    1(1) Verify that the property was inspected within the last three
2days pursuant to paragraph (2) of subdivisionbegin delete (d)end deletebegin insert (e)end insert and found to
3be vacant.

4(2) Ascertain the identity of any person who is found on the
5property.

6(3) Require a person who is found on the property to produce
7written authorization to be on the property.

8(4) begin deleteAdvise end deletebegin insertNotify end insertany person who does not produce written
9authorization pursuant to paragraph (3) that he or she has 48 hours
10to obtain written authorization from the owner of the property, or
11the owner’s agent, to be on the property, and that the person will
12be subject to arrest for trespass if the person is subsequently found
13on the property without that authorization.

14(5) Verify with the owner or the owner’s agent that the property
15is vacant.

begin delete

16(f)

end delete

17begin insert(g)end insertbegin deleteAny end deletebegin insert (1)end insertbegin insertend insertbegin insertThe owner or owner’s agent of vacant real property
18may file an action for a temporary restraining order and injunctive
19relief against any end insert
person who is found onbegin delete aend deletebegin insert theend insert vacant property
20not less than 48 hours afterbegin delete beingend deletebegin insert that person has beenend insert notifiedbegin delete as
21provided inend delete
begin insert pursuant toend insert paragraph (4) of subdivisionbegin delete (e) is guilty
22of trespass and, upon conviction, is subject to imprisonment in a
23county jail not exceeding one year, or by a fine not exceeding one
24thousand dollars ($1,000), or bothend delete
begin insert (f). A person subject to a
25temporary restraining order or an injunction obtained pursuant
26to this subdivision is subject to arrest and imprisonment for
27trespass pursuant to Section 602.5 of the Penal Code for failing
28to vacate the property pursuant to the temporary restraining order
29or injunction and for civil contempt for violating a court orderend insert
.

begin insert

30(2) The summons and complaint in an action brought pursuant
31to this subdivision may be served personally or by posting a copy
32of the summons and complaint at a prominent location on the
33property and mailing a copy of the summons and complaint to the
34property’s address. Posting and mailing a copy of the summons
35and complaint shall be sufficient service even if the mailed copy
36is returned as undeliverable if the owner or owner’s agent has
37proof of the mailing.

end insert
begin insert

38(3) The court may order a hearing on a temporary restraining
39order within three days following service of the summons and
40complaint. The date, time, and location of the hearing may be
P6    1included with the summons and complaint or may be separately
2served on any person occupying the property in the manner set
3out in paragraph (2).

end insert
begin insert

4(4) The court may include in any temporary restraining order
5granted pursuant to this subdivision an order directing that the
6property be vacated in not less than 48 hours. The order may be
7enforced by the local law enforcement agency where the property
8is registered or the county sheriff.

end insert
begin insert

9(5) The disposition of any personal property of a person subject
10to a temporary restraining order or an injunction pursuant to this
11subdivision shall be governed by the procedures set forth in
12Chapter 5 (commencing with Section 1980) of Title 5 of Part 4 of
13Division 3 of Civil Code. The person subject to the temporary
14restraining order or injunction shall be deemed to be a former
15tenant of the property for purposes of the disposition of personal
16property only.

end insert
begin delete

17(g)

end delete

18begin insert(h)end insert This section shall not be construed to limit an owner from
19seeking other legal remedies to have a person removed from the
20vacant property pursuant to any other law.

begin delete

21(h)

end delete

22begin insert(i)end insertbegin deleteThe arrest of a person and removal of end deletebegin insertA temporary
23restraining order or injunction ordering a person to vacate and
24remove end insert
personal property pursuant tobegin delete the provisions ofend delete this section
25begin delete isend deletebegin insert shallend insert notbegin insert constituteend insert a forcible entry under the provisions of
26Section 1159 of the Code of Civil Procedure.

begin delete

27(i)

end delete

28begin insert(j)end insert The local city council or board of supervisors shall establish
29fees for registering a vacant property with the local law
30enforcement agency and for the conduct of inspections by the law
31enforcement agency pursuant to this section.

begin delete

32(j)

end delete

33begin insert(k)end insert This sectionbegin delete shall applyend deletebegin insert appliesend insert only to one-unit to four-unit
34residences in the Cities of Palmdale and Lancaster in the County
35of Los Angelesbegin insert and the City of Ukiah in the County of Mendocinoend insert.

begin delete

36(k)

end delete

37begin insert(l)end insert This section shall remain in effect only until January 1, 2018,
38and as of that date is repealed, unless a later enacted statute, that
39is enacted before January 1, 2018, deletes or extends that date.

begin delete40

SEC. 3.  

Section 602.56 is added to the Penal Code, to read:

P7    1

602.56.  

end delete
2begin insert

begin insertSEC. 3.end insert  

end insert

begin insertSection 527.12 is added to the end insertbegin insertCode of Civil Procedureend insertbegin insert,
3to read:end insert

4begin insert

begin insert527.12.end insert  

end insert

(a) A property owner, or an agent of the property
5owner, may execute a “Declaration of Ownership” that includes
6language substantially similar to the language below and file it
7with thebegin delete district attorneyend deletebegin insert local law enforcement agencyend insert of the
8jurisdiction in which the property is located. If the property owner,
9or the agent of the property owner, files the declaration with the
10begin delete district attorneyend deletebegin insert local law enforcement agencyend insert, he or she shall also
11post the declaration on the unoccupied residential property listed
12in the declaration.

13
14“DECLARATION OF OWNERSHIP OF RESIDENTIAL REAL
15PROPERTY

16

17I, ____________________, declare and state: I make this
18declaration based upon my own personal knowledge.

191. I am the owner___, or the agent of the owner___(check one),
20of the residential property located at _____________________,
21California (“Property”).

222. Submitted with this declaration, and incorporated herein by
23reference, is a true and correct copy of the deed by which I obtained
24ownership of the Property.

253. Since obtaining ownership of the Property, no ownership
26interest in the Property has been conveyed or transferred to any
27other person or entity.

284. At the time of obtaining ownership of the Property, no person
29was occupying the Property and no ownership interest or right of
30possession in the Property has been conveyed or transferred to any
31other person or entity.

325. As of the present date, there are no persons authorized by me
33or my agent to reside within the Property. Any persons residing
34on this Property are doing so without any express or implied
35authorization from me or my agent.

366. I have not entered into any form of lease arrangement, rental
37agreement, or given any consent whatsoever to any persons to
38reside within the Property.

P8    17. I will advise thebegin delete district attorneyend deletebegin insertlocal law enforcement
2agencyend insert
if there is any change in the status of the Property and an
3occupancy is authorized by me or my agent.

48. I declare under penalty of perjury that the foregoing is true
5and correct.
6

7EXECUTED on _________________________________, at
8_______________________, California”

begin insert

9(b) Notwithstanding Section 47 of the Civil Code, a property
10owner, or agent thereof, who files a declaration pursuant to this
11section that includes false information regarding the right to
12possess the property is liable to any person who, as a result of the
13declaration, is caused to vacate the property, for all damages
14 resulting from the person having to vacate the property.

end insert
begin delete

15(b)

end delete

16begin insert(c)end insert This sectionbegin delete shall applyend deletebegin insert appliesend insert only to one-unit to four-unit
17residences in the Cities of Palmdale and Lancaster in the County
18of Los Angelesbegin insert and the City of Ukiah in the County of Mendocinoend insert.

begin delete

19(c)

end delete

20begin insert(d)end insert This section shall remain in effect only until January 1, 2018,
21and as of that date is repealed, unless a later enacted statute, that
22is enacted before January 1, 2018, deletes or extends that date.

23

SEC. 4.  

The Legislature finds and declares that a special law
24is necessary and that a general law cannot be made applicable
25within the meaning of Section 16 of Article IV of the California
26Constitution because of the unique circumstances in the Cities of
27Palmdale and Lancaster in the Country of Los Angelesbegin insert and the
28City of Ukiah in the County of Mendocino,end insert
, it is first necessary to
29establish this program in a limited setting to analyze its
30effectiveness before considering an extension to other local
31jurisdictions.

32

SEC. 5.  

No reimbursement is required by this act pursuant to
33Section 6 of Article XIII B of the California Constitution for certain
34costs that may be incurred by a local agency or school district
35because, in that regard, this act creates a new crime or infraction,
36eliminates a crime or infraction, or changes the penalty for a crime
37or infraction, within the meaning of Section 17556 of the
38Government Code, or changes the definition of a crime within the
39meaning of Section 6 of Article XIII B of the California
40Constitution.

P9    1However, if the Commission on State Mandates determines that
2this act contains other costs mandated by the state, reimbursement
3to local agencies and school districts for those costs shall be made
4pursuant to Part 7 (commencing with Section 17500) of Division
54 of Title 2 of the Government Code.



O

    94