When can you sue a landlord for wrongful eviction in California?

On Behalf of | Oct 25, 2022 | Real Estate Law

According to California law, every tenant has a right to quiet enjoyment of the property they are renting. This law requires landlords to ensure the tenants’ right to this enjoyment is not disturbed. 

However, it is not unusual for a landlord to violate this provision and evict their tenant unjustifiably. How do you know if what your landlord did was even legal? Here are two instances when you can sue your landlord for an illegal eviction in California: 

When the eviction is based on discrimination

The Fair Housing Act prohibits discrimination in housing on grounds of color, race, religion, gender, national origin, disability and family status. Additionally, California laws also protect tenants from eviction based on their medical conditions or disabilities. Discriminatory eviction happens when the landlord evicts you based on any of these prohibitions. 

When the eviction is motivated by retaliation

It is not unusual for tenants to get into a disagreement with their landlords. Emotions can rise and arguments can heat up. However, a landlord should never evict you in retaliation for something you said or did if you had a legal right to take that action.

For instance, if you complained about the property’s broken plumbing system, the landlord cannot force you to leave because you brought the matter up. Sometimes, a retaliatory eviction can happen when you report the landlord to the health department or the housing authority.

Landlord-tenant disputes are inevitable. However, if these disputes lead to an illegal eviction, then you might want to explore your legal options so you can safeguard your rights and interests. 


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