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James Coy Driscoll
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James Driscoll’s Answers

638 total


  • Can a landlord remove a washing machine from a apartment after verbal approval was given? Also can they fine if not removed?

    Landlord's parents (previous landlords) gave verbal approval to install washing machines, now current landlord claims approval was never given although washing machines have been installed for over 10 years. Current landlord wants washing machines...

    James’s Answer

    There's nothing in the lease prohibiting washing machines, the landlord cannot change the terms of the tendency without at least giving 30 days written notice of change of terms of tenancy. Your parents may have additional rights under the Los Angeles rent ordinance. The should speak with a tenants' attorney immediately.

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  • Its not apartment but house with 5 rooms and I rent one room,4 roommates. Landlord not live there. He set up camera every corner

    Cameras already there before I move in but roommates dont care because they all male.As ONLY female, I am not comfortable the landlord spy me24 hours. small kitchen has 4 cameras watch me while Im cooking wearing short n tanktop.Hallway has 4 came...

    James’s Answer

    The space in which you are living is most likely illegally converted from from use as a single-family home. You may be entitled to get back some or all of the rent you paid as well as your deposit. You should speak with experienced tenants' lawyer immediately.

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  • My landlord is doing construction in the duplex below. He shuts off the water without notifying me. Now I have no water for flus

    This morning I confronted my landlord of not getting water in my apartment. He acknowledged and said the work will be done soon. I go to work come back (5:30pm) my water is still not running and would very much like running water in the bathroom.

    James’s Answer

    Google "SF DBI" for the San Francisco department of building inspection website. On it you an file a complaint regarding the lack of water and chec to see if the landlord has a permit for the work he is doing.

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  • What can I do about an eviction if I am unemployed

    I have received an Unlawful detainer notice after losing my job. I was approved for Unemployment benefits , however they have not been received and I am now at risk of losing my home. I am only late on this month and no more, trying my best to pay...

    James’s Answer

    If you have been served with a summons and complaint you have five days, including weekend days, to file a written response with the court. Talking with your landlord will not relieve you of this responsibility. You should immediately speak with the tenants lawyer or a nonprofit group, such as legal aid, to obtain advise about your situation .

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  • I have lived in a residential motel almost 2yrs.i pay $900 a month, i pay daily, if chks late.Do the tenant laws still apply? CA

    people stay here as if it were an apt. If i were to go more than 1 day without a payment, he would throw me out, and if i didn't get my stuff out, he will put it in the trash. He does come in whenever he wants. I really need to know as i pay up...

    James’s Answer

    It is illegal for your landlord to evict you by "self-help."

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  • I own a company incorporated in New York and have a big dispute with a California-based company. I entered into a contract with

    this company; we've done a lot of business with them. Pursuant to this contract, all claims must be adjudicated in their home town in California. I am afraid that we might not be able to get a fair trial and want to motion for a change of venue to...

    James’s Answer

    Your concern about being "home towned" was shared by the Founding Fathers. That is why the Constitution gives the federal courts jurisdiction to hear disputes between "citizens" of different states. The idea is that the life-time appointed federal judges are going to be less subject to local pressures than a locally-elected state court judge.
    You may want to consult with a lawyer in the area where the other company is located to get a sense of how strong the local sentiment is for that company. Doing so will inform your decision about whether to 1) file in NY and fight the venue clause; 2) file in federal court in CA; or 3) file in state court in CA.

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  • Do I have a case with a contractor? A 2 week job turned into 2 months. He took on other projects without telling me.

    He admitted to rushing the job and had to come out on 4 separate times of 3 days each to fix what he did. There were paint drips everywhere on the baseboards and door casings. Where the door casing meet the laminate floor there were gaps. He told ...

    James’s Answer

    I agree with Mr. Lykken. In addition, if he is NOT a licensed contractor, you are entitled to get back ALL of the money you paid him.

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  • Can I get kicked out of my family's home in two short days even though I pay rent? Can I get 30 days to leave?

    I am a single mother with a child and I am receiving public assistance from the state, they have an informal rental agreement signed by the owner of the house that I pay x amount a month to stay here with my son.

    James’s Answer

    • Selected as best answer

    You cannot legally be evicted or locked out, without a formal court proceeding. The person from whom you rent would need to give you a 3-, 30-, or 60-day notice terminating your tenancy (depending on the reason for doing so and how long you have lived there). If you do not leave by the time the notice expires, the person from whom you rent must file an eviction lawsuit (called an unlawful detainer or "UD"). You must then be served with court paper in the lawsuit. WARNING: You have only FIVE days, INCLUDING weekend days, to file your written response with the court. You are entitled to a jury trial before you can be evicted.
    If you receive 3-, 3-, or 60-day notice or any court papers, IMMEDIATELY speak with a lawyer or an agency that helps defend against evictions, such as legal aid.
    Good luck!

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  • I received a 3 day pay or quit, a pre judgment claim of possession notice and a summons from my landlord's attorney.

    All had a case number but no court stamp. I checked with the court website and no case with that number was found, Is this legal? I haven't responded yet, should I?

    James’s Answer

    The court's website likely blocks access to unlawful detainer (eviction) case info. You have five days,INCLUDING weekend days, from the effective date of service to file your written response with the court. The effective date of service can vary based the method by which you were served. You should speak with a tenants attorney immediately.

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  • Can landlord terminate a lease with a 60 days notice

    Landlord wants to move back to property. The lease does not specify if the landlord can terminate lease to move back into house. It will be months before the lease is expiring.

    James’s Answer

    No, the landlord cannot unilaterally end the lease.

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