Denial of Entry Under Phase 2 of the LA County Eviction Moratorium

 

Beginning June 1, 2022, Phase 2 of the LA County Eviction Moratorium aka the Tenant Protections Resolution no longer protects tenants from eviction if the tenant denies access to the rental property to the landlord/agent.

Phase 2 Denial of Entry in LA County

We’ve created a video that discuss the new entry rules that took effect on June 1, 2022 in LA county.

As of June 1, 2022, A Tenant May Not Deny a Landlord/Agent Access to the Rental

Phase 2 of the LA county tenant protections took effect on June 1, 2022. Believe it or not, prior to June 1, 2022, a tenant could deny a landlord access to the rental unit except in very limited circumstances. But beginning on June 1, 2022, a tenant can be evicted if the tenant denies the landlord access to the property, assuming 1) the landlord has a valid reason for entry and has given proper notice to the tenant, and 2) the landlord is not using the entry to harass the tenant.

Most Common Valid Reasons for Entry

What is a valid reason for entering a rental property in LA county? Civil Code 1954 specifies the allowable reasons for entering a rental unit. The most common allowable reasons for entering a rental unit in LA county include the following:

(1) In case of emergency.

(2) To make necessary or agreed repairs, decorations, alterations or improvements, supply necessary or agreed services, or exhibit the dwelling unit to prospective or actual purchasers, mortgagees, tenants, workers, or contractors or to make an inspection.

While there are more allowable reasons, these are the most common. See Civil Code 1954 for more allowable reasons.

Proper Notice to Enter Rental Unit

Not only must the landlord have a valid reason to enter, the landlord must also provide the tenant with proper notice of entry. Again, Civil Code 1954 spells out what is proper notice for entering a rental. The notice may be personally delivered to the tenant, left with someone of a suitable age and discretion at the premises, or, left on, near, or under the usual entry door of the premises in a manner in which a reasonable person would discover the notice. Twenty-four hours shall be presumed to be reasonable notice in absence of evidence to the contrary. The notice may be mailed to the tenant. Mailing of the notice at least six days prior to an intended entry is presumed reasonable notice in the absence of evidence to the contrary. The tenant and the landlord can also agree to entry orally.

The notice shall include the date, approximate time, and purpose of the entry. 

At the time of entry, the landlord or agent shall leave written evidence of the entry inside the unit.

Refer to Civil Code 1954 for more notice of entry rules.

No Tenant Harassment

The landlord may not abuse the right of access or use it to harass the tenant, as this would violate not only Civil Code 1954, but also the LA County Tenant Protection Ordinance.

What if a Tenant Denies Entry?

Since a tenant no longer gets protection from the LA county COVID protection rules as of June 1, 2022 relating to denial of access, if the landlord has a valid reason for entry, and has provided the tenant with proper notice, and if tenant denies the landlord access, the landlord has the right to begin the eviction process.

The first step in this type of eviction would be to serve a correct 3 day notice on the tenant. The landlord needs to document the attempts to enter and keep a copy of the notice to enter that was given to the tenant. The landlord must be sure that 1) the notice to enter has all required information on it, 2) the entry is for an allowed reason, and 3) the notice to enter was given to the tenant in the correct manner. If the tenant still denies access after the 3 day notice period, then the landlord would need to file an unlawful detainer action at the courthouse.

Additional Information

Disclaimer

The information in this article and blog are not meant to be legal advice and is intended for educational purposes only. The laws change frequently and this article may not be updated to reflect current rules. Do not rely on this article when making legal decisions. Consult with legal counsel regarding your particular case before taking any action.

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