I only know Mr. Carlson via his website, CalTenantLaw ... his information there has helped my family tremendously as well as others whom my husband and I try to advocate for in Tenant/Landlord issues. We have won cases using his information, even though California Unlawful Detainer courts are the wild west as far as upholding the law. We heard one UD judge say, "You signed the contract so you don't get to have regrets here." She was referring to a rental agreement where the landlord had put numerous clauses in that directly violated the tenant's civil rights, housing rights, etc. (e.g., "If tenant sues the landlord, the tenant agrees to pay the landlord's attorney costs even if the tenant prevails.") The judge's ignorance is indicative of the horrible unconstitutionality that the UD proceedings in California have become. The judges have let the landlord lawyers decide how to interpret housing statutes, and that has left tenants with no true justice or recourse ... especially given you can't really find a "Tenant" lawyer out there.
One example of misinterpreted statues is the infamous CCC Section 1954, where EVERYONE (i.e., lawyers) states that the landlord has "an absolute right of entry" into your rented home. BUT, Section 1953 states the rights in 1954 ARE THE TENANT'S RIGHTS!! Just one example of how things have gone south for tenant rights.
But Ken Carlson is combating that with his website. And those few of us who are trying to get the law back on track with proper interpretations greatly appreciate his efforts.
I had a phone consultation ($5/min) and an initial consultation with Ken. I initially purchased the lawsuit kit from his website and was blown away by it, everything was well researched, easy to understand, and helped me get through a small claims case against my landlord. His site has length warnings about how you must make the most of your time when paying for a phone consultation, how to have your questions prepared, etc. I heeded those warnings and was very prepared for our consult, only to have Ken spend over half the time going over basics I told him I knew (1950.f and other portions of law) and ranting about corrupt landlords, judges, etc.
Is he cheaper than other attorneys? Yes. Is his site extremely useful and do I respect his work organizing for tenants rights/being an incredibly advocate? Yes. Would I hire him to represent me in court/pay for any more of his time? No.
Posted by Ron
My experience with Ken has been nothing short of spectacular! His knowledge, expertise, and experience make him second to none. I was so scared when my landlord first threatened me with being evicted, however, after talking with Ken for my initial consultation I knew I was in good hands. I wouldn't wish a landlord-tenant dispute on anybody, but if that is what you are facing Ken is your man!
Posted by Jeff Bunnell
Ken is the best. Do not hesitate in hiring this lawyer. He knows what he is talking about and will take care of all your concerns. Most importantly, he will get you more time and frustrate the heck out of your landlord and his lawyer.
Ken really does “work for you” just as his webpage states. Many times, I called him and we only had a short window to prep the documents before filing the same day, but Ken ALWAYS came through. That is so important during this ordeal; as you may or may not know, one day late in filing and it’s over.
I won my case, and got exactly what I wanted going in. My landlord got frustrated and we settled. cannot praise Mr Carlson enough. 35 years of experience. 5 stars repeatedly. Hire this lawyer and rejoice. Ken is your landlord’s worst nightmare.
Posted by a client
Before I found California Tenant Law & Mr. Ken Carlson online, I hired an “Eviction Delay” service that, at first, sounded good but then quickly didn't feel right. They immediately had me file a ‘Demurrer’ instead first trying to ‘Quash’ a defective 3-Day Notice but only prepared an answer for me and forgot or didn't prepare one for my wife.
(Sorry about the legal terms “Quash, Demurrer & 3-Day” you’ll understand later when you hire Ken.)
I was not aware of the consequences to my wife until it was too late. She was found in “Default” by a Pasadena, CA court so I had to press on however, not with the crappy eviction delay service but with Calif. Tenant Law.
My goal was; to avoid the UD judgment and find another habitable home for my family in my neighborhood. Or just WIN in court because of uninhabitable issues with my apartment and “illegal late fees” charged to me when I was late paying rent in the past and other technical legal issues. (I was surprised to find out that late fees to pay rent were illegal, who knew?)
Mr. Carlson did an absolutely masterful job in informing, educating and supporting me through the entire process of an Unlawful Detainer. In doing so, Mr. Carlson saved me thousands in legal fees and a black mark on my credit. With Ken’s help I won in court and kept my family off the streets until I can find another place to live.
Here’s how effective Ken’s help was and continues to be; I beat not only the landlord and his pompous “Harvard educated” attorney! Don’t get me wrong I like Harvard just not this arrogant know it all. This lawyer even had the gall to raise his voice at the Judge as he tried to school her on the technicality of the law on illegal late fees on a 3-Day Notice.
Now I’m on offensive, and with Ken’s help, I will be filing a counter lawsuit for Malicious Prosecution against the landlord, possibly the new management company & definitely the opposing attorney!
I kind of feel sorry for the landlord for having to pay all those court and legal fees which must be close to $10,000 by now only to expend more to defend against a counter lawsuit.
In winning the Unlawful Detainer the landlord also has to write me a check for all my legal expenses, as well as, reimburse me all the illegal late fees charged to me in the amount of about $1,360! (Ken still has to review that amount.)
Not really proud of this, I’m not a deadbeat, we are just having a hard time making ends meet, but I am now going on 8 months without having to pay rent. As Ken says, this is the landlord’s choice. The landlord came after me rather than continue to work with me as he did the previous 14 months to make rent.
I very much recommend that you stay away from these eviction delay services, they are vultures and you get the short end of the stick. Join up with an attorney that specializes in Landlord/Tenant law or just forget the others and team up with Ken!!
The great thing about Ken is this, you know he has your best interest at heart. Just as important, he knows the law very well. You can feel it …you can hear it in his voice.
Posted by Lorna
Ken Carlson was absolutely the best thing since sliced bread for me. I was dealing with the King of Difficult Landlords and facing an unlawful eviction until he explained to me that all hope was not lost. Ken provided me with a wealth of information, assisted me with filings, trial preparation, and gave me the courage to face a very difficult Landlord who does little or nothing to maintain his property and nothing at all for the benefit of his tenants.
Ken was patient and available at my beacon call, and made the process understandable for me and in essence it ended up being an enjoyable experience. What I liked best was that his materials were "right on the money", and he did not waste my time with 'nonsense' papers that the court clerks were attempting to require me to fill out. Ken held my hand through the whole thing and was even available to me during the settlement conference with my landlord and his lawyer.
The icing on the cake was when my landlord's attorney stated the following: "You were a nightmare for me to defend my client, and I was flustered after dealing with you. You were the BEST prepared defendant I have ever encountered in my entire legal career." I thanked him for the compliment, and I just need to say that this is a testament to the power of what Ken Carson can do for you!!
I would use his services again without hesitation, and I highly recommend him. He is easy to work with, has a phenomenal sense of humor and more importantly, if you use Ken's services and do everything the way that he tells you, YOU WILL WIN YOUR CASE!!
I did. I basically got to stay in my home for another 45 days rent free, I got my security deposit back and he cannot put an eviction on my record. I also wiped out 6 months of back-pay on the rent, based on what Ken taught me. If I can do this, so can you!
That's why I say that Ken Carson is the BOMB and he ROCKS!!
Posted by a client
We are still in our home after receiving the Unlawful Detainer in August. Stop! Do Not use any other Tenant lawyer other than Ken Carlson. He not only is the best, he is Trustworthy, Responsive, knowledgeable and keeps us in formed, just as the Overall Rating states.
BEST. BEST. BEST!
I will keep posting as we continue using the Game Board, which by the way is wonderful!
Posted by a client
My landlord tried to evict me in September, and I thought I had a weak case (I had lost my money order receipt that had confirmed I paid the rent.) I found Ken through his website, and my fear transformed to courage. For a fraction of what I would've ended up paying in rent
Ken turned what could have been a bullying situation from my landlord, where I would've had a judgement owing for at least a thousand dollars, eviction in two weeks and my credit blacklisted and trashed, to one where I was I was able to not only remain in my apartment for an additional FIVE MONTHS RENT FREE, and also able to settle the case on my terms. No judgement. Dismissal.
Ken Carlson gives tenants options.
Posted by Matt
You have to file an ex parte application [$100] and motion for relief from default [$200], to go with the papers you intended to file [motion to quash $100]. You paid $100 for the consultation, which we did last November, and recently $100 for the initial consultation which we have yet to do. You are sending me emails, without payment for the time I'm spending on them, and you now want me to start writing something on a partial payment.
First, you are paying for my time. If you send me emails, it's $50 per email, paid in advance. If you want to communicate with me for just a couple of minutes, the Hotline is your best choice,even though it's $5 per minute, and you don't need an appointment. If you're not respecting my time, and using your desperation in this as currency, we're not working together, and I'm not losing a customer. Meanwhile, I will not respond to unpaid emails or calls. You can't just barge into my office and start demanding immediate help for free. I'm not unsympathetic, but I'm tired of being abused by clients I'm trying to help
(email cut off here due to personal info but above is not edited)
I didnt know you last November my whole case started 2 weeks ago. AND I sent you an additional $100 yesterday I purchased the Ex-Parte from your list of filings by the piece.
I never tried to get anything for free. I asked if the ex-parte was enough to get through till the fist of the month when I get a full check. but never asked you to write anything for free.
Im going to chalk this one up to you just having a bad morning. Why dont you check your receipts from yesterday again and then get back to me. If you need I can send you back the confirmation that you send after purchase.
Now that hopefully everyone is calm. I do appreciate the half compliment on my attempt at the motion to quash. I knew I was in over my head but was hoping that it showed enough simple visible obvious errors in the complaint that my lack of court presentation would suffice. That being said I wasnt sure if the errors he made were proper for a quash or a demurrer but thats what I have you for.
Just so its in writing:
I have never talked to you before a week or two ago and certainly didnt have any case last November so if my file is co-mingled with someone else's please un-mingle them.
I purchased the $100 Ex-Parte from your website yesterday right at lunch time a cut and paste of the reciept is pasted at the bottom of this reply.
(email cut off here due to personal information but above is un-edited)
Like I said I am not going to review him because I got laughed out of the court room so I have a chip on my shoulder. But above is a snapshot of my relationship with him.
Posted by Madalyn
Thank you so much for the free advice on your site. I was in a full blown anxiety attack from my landlord's abuse. It immediately put me at ease to know my rights and that I had some recourse. Thank you for helping me get on an even keel and see that I have some control here.