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Landlord-Tenant

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Plaintiff, the tenant in a commercial building, was injured when his head struck a low beam at the entrance to an upstairs door and as a result he fell down the stairs.  This decision affirms a summary judgment for the landlord based on an exculpatory clause in the lease which absolved the landlord of liability for personal injuries suffered as… Read More

A commercial lease provided that tenant-paid renovations or fixtures became the landlord's property on termination of the lease.  Here, the lessee was a beauty salon which had installed a water heater and sinks in a built-in counter.  This decision holds the heater and sinks were fixtures even though they could easily be removed.  If the personalty attached to the realty… Read More

Under Civil Code 1950.7(c), a commercial landlord can use a tenant's security deposit to pay the tenant's defaults in payment of rent, repair damage to the premises or to clean the premises after the tenant's move-out--but only if the lease provides that the landlord can use the deposit for those purposes.  Here, the lease authorized use of the security deposit… Read More

A landlord was not liable for the wrongful death of a hair dresser whose employer, a tenant in the property, had stored flammable hair treatment liquid on the premises, which ignited and incinerated the hair dresser/  The landlord had no actual or constructive knowledge that the employer was storing inflammable liquids on the premises and had no duty to investigate… Read More

Landlord filed an unlawful detainer action against tenant, alleging that tenant owed $27,100 in rent.  Before trial landlord settled with tenant.  The settlement provided for a date and time by which tennat would be gone from the rented premises, and provided for entry of a judgment for $28,970 if tenant was not gone by the deadline.  Tenant missed the deadline… Read More

This decision affirms a JNOV entered after the jury awarded the tenant $600,000 for an eviction on an owner-move-in, alleged to have been in bad faith in violation of San Francisco's rent control ordinance.  The decision holds the "good faith" for this purpose relates only to the owner's  desire to occupy the apartment as his or her primary residence on… Read More

A holdover tenant is no longer in contractual privity with the landlord; so although the holdover tenancy is presumed to continue on the same terms as the preceding lease, only essential terms of the preceding lease are presumed to carry forward—and a right of first refusal is not one of these essential terms. Read More

A new owner that succeeds to rights under an existing lease must disclose information about itself within 15 days of succeeding to the prior owner and may not serve a three-day notice to quit based on rent that fell due during any period of noncompliance by the successor owner with that requirement, but this rule does not apply to a… Read More

While a title isn't normally supposed to be an issue in an unlawful detainer action, under the Ellis Act the trial court should have considered relevant evidence of the landlord's phony sale of another unit in considering the landlord's intent to withdraw the building from the rental market (or not). Read More

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