New law gives California tenants more time to fight evictions

Housing advocates demand rent control and eviction protections in Long Beach in June.
(Katie Falkenberg / Los Angeles Times)

Tenants in California will get more time to fight evictions under a new law that Gov. Jerry Brown signed this week.

Currently, tenants have three days to respond to an eviction notice — by either remedying the violation or vacating the property — and five days to respond to an eviction lawsuit. Under AB 2343, which was introduced this year by Assemblyman David Chiu (D-San Francisco), weekends and court holidays will be excluded when figuring the response deadlines, giving tenants more time to find solutions.

“Tenants in California are facing unprecedented hardships and constantly living under the threat of eviction,” Chiu said in a statement. “A few extra days can be the difference between staying in their home or becoming homeless.”

Legal aid attorneys in California have long warned that some landlords have served tenants with eviction notices or court summonses on Fridays before holiday weekends, so the tenants were unable to find a timely remedy.

The law will take effect Sept. 1, 2019.