Frequently Asked Questions



What is an Unlawful Detainer?

An Unlawful Detainer is a legal action to evict a tenant. The action involves properly terminating the tenancy before going to court and seeking possession of the property, unpaid rent, and/or damages. An Unlawful Detainer is also known as an eviction lawsuit. (


What are the rules about returning security deposits?

Landlords are allowed to make deductions from a tenant’s security deposit, provided they have good reason and proper documentation. In California, landlords must provide renters with written notice before taking any deductions out of the security deposit. And, according to California state law, a landlord must return a tenants deposit within 21 days of regaining possession-  an itemized statement of deductions must be sent to the tenant.


What if a tenant breaks the lease?

Generally, the tenant is bound to the length of the lease unless the landlord significantly breaks the law or violates the terms of the lease—e.g. by failing to make necessary repairs, etc. California provides that victims of domestic violence, or those starting active military duty the legal right to break a lease contract.

A tenant who breaks a lease contract without good cause will be responsible for the remaining rent due in the lease term. It is required that the landlord must employ reasonable effort to find a new tenant—rather than charge the tenant for the remaining rent.


Can a landlord legally terminate the lease and therefore the tenancy?

The most obvious reason a landlord can choose to terminate a lease contract is if the tenant disobeys or violates the rules in the lease or the law. A landlord must first send proper notification to the tenant stating that the tenancy has been terminated and the tenant must leave. Laws regarding eviction are very specific, so make sure to study them beforehand.


Do you have any other locations?

Yes, we are happy to meet you, by appointment only, at any of the following office locations:

Orange County – Newport Beach
620 Newport Center Drive, Suite 1100
Newport Beach, California 92660

San Bernardino County – Ontario
3281 East Guasti Road, Suite 700
Ontario, California 91761

Riverside County – Riverside
11801 Pierce Street, Suite 200
Riverside, California 92505

San Diego County – San Diego
501 West Broadway, Suite 800
San Diego, CA 92101