Los Angeles City – Permanent Residential Renter Protections after COVID

Los Angeles City – Permanent Residential Renter Protections after COVID

On April 3rd LA extended as permanent some of the COVID renter protections and enacted new ones.[1]  Landlords can evict for at-fault reasons, which are included in the LA Housing reference list[2], as well as some no-fault reasons[3]; but cannot evict tenants who fall behind on rent unless the tenant owes an amount higher than the Fair Market Rent (“FMR”) based on the following:

Efficiency/StudioOne BedroomTwo BedroomThree BedroomFour Bedroom
  • •Landlords must provide, in writing, a legal reason for eviction.  Caution:  eviction protections for unauthorized pets and additional tenants due to COVID-19 have been extended through 1/31/2024.

  • •Landlords may not increase rent in rent-stabilized housing until 2/1/2024.

  • •Landlords that raise rent by more than 10% within 12 months must pay for tenant relocation assistance if the tenant decides to move instead of paying the increased rent.

  • •Landlords must file all termination notices with the Housing Department within 3 days of serving the tenants or risk a valid defense to an eviction.

  • •Landlords must provide Notice of Renters’ Protections[4] to new and renewing tenants and post the notice in an accessible common area of the property

  • •Landlords should be aware of LA’s Just Cause for Eviction Ordinance[5], which applies at the end of a tenant’s first lease or after 6 months of continuous, lawful occupancy, whichever occurs first.

  • •Landlords should not forget the tenant Declaration of COVID-Related Financial Distress, because a tenant’s timely notice protects against eviction for non-payment of this rent.  Importantly, if the tenant gave the notice and paid 25% of the rent accumulated from 9/1/2020 through 9/30/2021, the tenant is currently inoculated from non-payment eviction for this period too (Landlords should collect this in small claims or civil court).

  • •Landlords can seek eviction for non-payment of rent after: 8/1/2023 for unpaid rent owed from 3/1/2020 to 9/30/2021; and 2/1/2024 for unpaid rent owed from 10/1/2021 to 1/31/2023.

Landlord/Tenant issues are in our firm’s sweet spot – we keep up with the laws.  If you need help, feel free to contact Dawn at: dcoulson@eppscoulson.com.

Information contained in this Memo is intended for informational and educational purposes only and does not constitute legal advice or opinion, nor is it a substitute for the professional judgment of an attorney.  It is likely considered advertising.  Epps & Coulson, LLP encourages you to call to discuss these matters as they apply to you or your business.

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[1] More info is available here:  https://housing.lacity.org/highlights/renter-protections

[1] https://housing.lacity.org/rental-property-owners/tenant-is-at-fault-for-eviction-owners

[1] https://housing.lacity.org/rental-property-owners/tenant-is-not-at-fault-for-eviction-owners

[1] https://housing.lacity.org/wp-content/uploads/2023/02/LA-Renter-protections-Notification-2.21.23-3.pdf

[1] https://housing.lacity.org/residents/just-cause-for-eviction-ordinance-jco