Tenants will sometimes fight an unlawful detainer eviction case by raising a defense to the eviction. Some common tenant defenses to an unlawful detainer in California include:
- Breach of the warranty of habitability. The landlord’s duty to provide a habitable property is independent of the tenant’s duty to pay rent. This means that the tenant’s failure to pay rent does not excuse the landlord from maintaining a habitable property.
- Waiver of the notice to quit. This often happens when the landlord accepts rent after the notice expired.
- Landlord’s breach of the rental agreement.
- Violation of eviction or rent control ordinance.
- Repair and deduct remedy.
- Title is at issue.
- Overpayment of rent.