Tenants have certain rights under the laws that are designed to protect them from unpleasant, unsatisfactory or unsafe living conditions. When a landlord violates these laws and refuses to address the situation in spite of reasonable requests, a Los Angeles tenants' rights lawyer should be contacted. With the help of your attorney, you can pursue a court order for the correction of the issues and, in many cases, receive financial compensation.
Retaliation occurs when the landlord wrongfully terminates the lease, files for eviction, deprives the tenant of the use of the premises, decreases services to a tenant, or increases the rent because a tenant tries to exercise his rights. For example, a landlord is not allowed to retaliate against a tenant for requesting repairs, or calling a government or nonprofit agency about a problem. If the landlord takes any adverse action against a tenant within six months of the tenant’s action, the landlord is presumed to have improperly retaliated. Nonpayment of rent is the easiest way a landlord can evict a tenant. So, before the tenant plans to take action against a landlord, the tenant must be completely current. If the landlord engages in activity that constitutes unlawful retaliation, a tenant may seek a judgment the landlord for: (1) one month’s rent, plus $500; (2) the reasonable costs to move to another place; and (3) attorney’s fees and court costs.