Monday, July 21, 2014

Definitions, Part 1

Today we digress to define some legal terms used in the world of eviction law:

Complaint
The legal document [pleading] filed by a property owner/landlord, used to start a case.  For evictions, which in California is called Unlawful Detainer [UD] or Forcible Detainer [FD], the Complaint usually makes one or more of the following allegations:
     1.  Tenant is undesirable [failure to move out after lawful demand to terminate tenancy]
     2.  Tenant is a deadbeat [failure to pay rent]
     3.  Tenant is a low-life [failure to perform conditions/covenants of the rental agreement]

Answer
The legal document [pleading] filed by a tenant in response to the Complaint.  For evictions, the Answer usually makes one or more of the following allegations:
     1.  Landlord is a slumlord [property has habitability problems]
     2.  Landlord is a scumbag [retaliation or discrimination]
     3.  Landlord is a jerk [generalized allegation applying to all landlords]

Stipulation
An agreement signed by both the landlord and the tenant, which usually states that neither party agrees with the allegations of the other party, but they have reached this agreement to avoid going to trial and airing their dirty laundry.


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