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90 Day Notice to Vacate California | Eviction Section 8 from Landlord

90 Day Notice to
Vacate California

Understanding the 90 Day Notice to Vacate in California

Whether you are a tenant or a landlord, you should know the rules and regulations regarding a 90 day notice to vacate 90 Day Notice to Vacate in California. Are you a tenant in California facing a 90 day notice to vacate from your landlord? Or are you a landlord needing to provide proper notice to terminate a tenancy? This comprehensive guide will walk you through everything you need to know about 90 day eviction notices in California. Learn about your rights, the process, and how to handle this critical situation the right way.

90 Day Notice to Vacate California

What is a 90 Day Notice to Vacate in California?

A 90 day notice to vacate in California is a formal written notice that a landlord must provide to a tenant to end a tenancy. The notice informs the tenant that they must move out of the rental property within 90 days. This extended 90-day notice period applies in specific situations, such as when a tenant has lived in the unit for more than a year or is a participant in the Section 8 housing program.

When is a 90 Day Notice to Vacate Required in California?

In most month-to-month tenancies in California, a landlord can use a 30-day or 60-day notice to terminate the rental agreement. However, a 90 day notice to vacate is required in the following scenarios:

  • The tenant has been renting for more than 12 months
  • The tenant is a participant in the Section 8 housing voucher program
  • Local rent control ordinances require a 90 day notice period


How Must a 90 Day Notice to Vacate Be Served in California?

A 90 day notice to vacate in California must be properly served to the tenant. Acceptable service methods include:

  • Personal service: Handing the notice directly to the tenant.
  • Substituted service: Leaving the notice with a person of suitable age and discretion at the rental unit and mailing a copy.
  • Posting and mailing: Affixing the notice to the rental property’s door and mailing a copy.

The notice period begins the day after the notice is served. It’s crucial for landlords to follow state and local laws for proper service to avoid delays in the eviction process.

Can a Landlord Give Less Than 90 Days Notice in California?

In some cases, a landlord may be able to provide less than a 90 day notice to vacate. For example, if the tenant has lived in the unit for less than a year, a 30-day or 60-day notice may suffice. Additionally, if the tenant has violated the lease agreement or failed to pay rent, a landlord can use a 3-day notice to quit.


90 Day Notice to Vacate California

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What if the Tenant Doesn’t Move Out After 90 Days?

If a tenant doesn’t vacate the rental property after the 90 day notice period expires, the landlord must file an unlawful detainer lawsuit to legally evict the tenant. This formal eviction process involves:

  1. Filing a complaint with the court
  2. Serving the tenant with a summons and complaint
  3. Attending a court hearing
  4. Obtaining a judgment for possession
  5. Having the sheriff serve a writ of possession to physically remove the tenant

Can a Tenant Dispute a 90 Day Notice to Vacate?

Yes, a tenant can challenge a 90 day notice to vacate if they believe the landlord didn’t follow proper procedures or is retaliating or discriminating against them. Common defenses against an eviction after a 90 day notice include:

  • The landlord used “self-help” eviction methods like changing the locks
  • The eviction is in retaliation for the tenant exercising a legal right, like requesting repairs
  • The 90 day notice contained incorrect or missing information
  • The landlord failed to provide the required 90-day notice

Tenants facing eviction can seek legal assistance to protect their rights and present their case in court.

How to Write a 90 Day Notice to Vacate in California

Landlords must ensure their 90 day notice to vacate includes all legally required information. A proper notice should contain:

  • The tenant’s name and address
  • The date the notice is served
  • A clear statement that the tenancy will terminate in 90 days
  • The specific date the tenant must vacate
  • The landlord’s signature

Many landlords choose to use a fillable 90 day notice to vacate California form to ensure their notice is correctly formatted and includes all necessary details.

90 Day Notice to Vacate California Template

Here’s a basic template for a 90 day notice to vacate in California:


Dear [Tenant Name],

You are hereby notified that your tenancy at the premises [Property Address] will terminate in 90 days on [Move-Out Date]. If you do not vacate the property by [Move-Out Date], legal proceedings will be instituted against you to recover possession of the premises, damages, and costs of suit.

You have the right to request an initial inspection of your unit and to be present during that inspection, which shall occur no earlier than two weeks prior to the termination of the tenancy.


[Landlord Name]

[Landlord Contact Information]

Remember, this is just a general template. Always consult with a local real estate attorney to ensure your notice complies with all state and local laws.

FAQs About 90 Day Notices to Vacate in California

Can a landlord give a 90 day notice for no reason in California?

Generally, yes. In most cities, a landlord doesn’t need to provide a reason when giving a 90 day notice to terminate a tenancy, as long as it’s not for a legally prohibited discriminatory or retaliatory reason. However, some rent-controlled jurisdictions require “just cause” for eviction.

Does a 90 day notice have to be notarized in California?

No, a 90 day notice to vacate does not need to be notarized in California to be legally valid. The landlord’s signature is sufficient.

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Protecting Tenants Facing Illegal Evictions

The Martinez Law Center specializes in representing tenants who are facing illegal evictions in California. As advocates for tenant rights, we focus on ensuring landlords follow proper procedures and tenants understand their rights. This guide covers key information on eviction notices, rental agreements, California tenant laws, moving out, legal proceedings, and inspections.

Types of Eviction Notices in California

If you receive an eviction notice as a tenant in California, it is critical to understand the different types of notices and what they mean. The most common notices include:

  • 90-Day Notices – These provide tenants with 90 days to vacate the property before the landlord can file an unlawful detainer lawsuit. This type of notice is used to end month-to-month tenancies.
  • 60-Day Notices – Much like 90-day Notices, these provide 60 days for the tenant to move out before any legal proceedings can begin to evict them.
  • 3-Day Notices – A 3-day notice to pay rent or quit is served if the tenant has failed to pay the rent on time. The tenant has 3 days to either pay the full amount of rent owed or move out.
  • Termination Notices – These end an existing lease early for reasons such as lease violations. The amount of notice required depends on the situation.

It is essential for tenants who receive any notice from their landlord to fully understand what it means and their rights. Certain rules and procedures must be followed for these notices to be valid.

90 Day Notice to Vacate California

Do you have to pay rent during a 90 day notice in California?

Yes, tenants are obligated to pay rent throughout the 90 day notice period. If a tenant fails to pay rent, the landlord can serve them with a 3-day notice to pay rent or quit, even during the 90-day window.

Landlord Considerations for 90 Day Notices in California

If you’re a landlord preparing to serve a 90 day notice to vacate in California, here are some important considerations:

  • Carefully review the tenant’s original lease agreement and check for any auto-renewal clauses

  • Follow all state and local laws regarding notice content, service, and timeline

  • Document your actions, including when and how the notice was served

  • Consider offering a tenant buyout agreement as an alternative to eviction

  • Be prepared for the tenant to contest the eviction and potentially take the case to trial

Tenant Rights and Options When Facing a 90 Day Eviction in California

As a tenant, you have rights and options if you receive a 90 day notice to vacate in California:

  • Ensure the notice is legally compliant before acting on it

  • Negotiate with your landlord for more time to move out, if needed

  • Remedy any claimed lease violations, if applicable

  • File a tenant’s affirmative defense if you believe the eviction is illegal

  • Seek rent assistance or legal aid resources in your community

Receiving a 90 day notice to vacate can be stressful, but knowing your rights is key to navigating the process and achieving the best possible outcome.

Key Takeaways on 90 Day Notices to Vacate in California

Whether you’re a landlord or tenant, understanding how 90 day notices work is crucial. Remember:

  • A 90 day notice is required when a tenant has lived in the unit for more than a year, is a Section 8 participant, or local law demands it

  • The notice must be properly written and served according to state law

  • If the tenant doesn’t vacate after 90 days, the landlord must file an unlawful detainer suit

  • Tenants can fight an eviction if they believe the 90 day notice is not legally valid

By following the proper legal procedures and understanding your rights and responsibilities, you can handle a 90 day notice to vacate in California as smoothly as possible.

Details on Common California Eviction Notices

There are two main reasons a California landlord can start the eviction process with a legal notice:

  1. Failure to pay rent
  2. Lease violation for substantial breach of the lease terms

Not all notices lead to full eviction cases, but tenants should take them seriously. Here are more details on the common notices used:

  • 3-Day Notice to Pay Rent or Quit – This demands past due rent be paid in full within 3 calendar days. If the tenant pays in full within 3 days, then the notice is satisfied and eviction is avoided. Partial payments do not count.
  • 30–60 Day Notice of Termination – Month-to-month or expired lease tenants without cause receive 30–60 days notice before the month’s end to vacate.
  • 3–30 Day Notice to Cure or Quit – For substantial lease violations, tenants have 3–30 days (depending on the violation) to fix (“cure”) the issue or “quit” by moving out.

No matter the reason, landlords must strictly follow California laws for tenant notices and evictions. We advise tenants on these rights.

90 Day Notice to Vacate California

Rental Agreements & Tenant Rights in California

The terms of any rental agreement, along with California state laws, shape tenant rights and landlord obligations. Key areas tenants should understand include:

Lease Agreements – Signed leases with defined rental periods (6 months, 1 year) are binding contracts for landlords and tenants. Tenants relying on verbal agreements still have rights, but leased tenants have more clearly defined terms for resolving disputes.

Month-to-Month Agreements– These automatic renewals continue indefinitely until proper notice is given by either the landlord or tenant. Proper notice periods to end month-to-month depend on the situation.

Rent Control – Local rent control ordinances strictly limit rental rate increases from year to year. Just cause eviction protections also come with rent control. Exempt properties still must follow state eviction processes.

Repairs & Habitability – Landlords must provide livable, habitable premises as defined by state law and local ordinances. Tenants can request essential repairs or withhold rent if conditions become unlivable due to defects.

Licensed attorneys can advise on rights related to the specific rental agreements in place between landlords and tenants facing disputes or eviction notices. There are also many aid organizations for low income, elderly, and disabled tenants needing assistance.

California Tenant Protections Against Eviction

Beyond customary landlord/tenant legal rights, California has some specific tenant protections:

  • AB 1482 “Tenant Protection Act” – Limits “no-fault” evictions and rent increases for non-rent controlled units. Tenants gain “just cause” and 5% + CPI rent cap protections.
  • Covid-19 Tenant Relief Act – Prevents evictions for unpaid rent due to covid financial hardship. Tenants must provide a signed declaration of hardship to gain eviction protections.
  • Local Rent Control Laws – Around 15 California cities have rent control and just cause eviction laws providing strong tenant protections well beyond state laws.

While state laws provide core protections, cities like Los Angeles, San Francisco, Oakland, Berkeley, and others offer much stronger eviction and rent increase control regulations. Understanding these key differences is why expert legal advice is so valuable to tenants facing eviction notices or landlord disputes in rent controlled areas.

Moving Out of a California Rental

When tenants wish to end the tenancy and move out or receive an eviction notice requiring them to vacate, there are essential regulations around giving proper tenant notice in California:

  1. Tenant Initiated – Tenants choosing to move must provide written notice to landlords ahead of time based on the type of rental agreement:

    • Month-to-Month – 30 days minimum
    • Lease Agreement – Until expiration term per lease
  2. Landlord Initiated – Landlords ending tenancies must provide tenants with written notice to vacate:

    • Month-to-Month – 60 days minimum
    • Primary Residence – 90 days minimum
    • Just Cause Eviction – Per local ordinance

Additionally, before moving out tenants have some other key rights:

  • Initial inspection to review unit condition
  • Being present at the move out inspection
  • Receiving any refund of required security deposits 21 days after moving out per California law

Understanding proper notice periods and move out procedures is essential for tenants vacating units, whether by choice or due to an eviction process. This avoids further disputes or penalties.

Details on California Notice to Vacate Requirements

To legally end any residential tenancy in California, proper written notice must be given by landlords or tenants, depending on who is initiating the lease termination:

  • Tenant Notice – Tenants choosing to move must submit written notice 30 calendar days in advance for month-to-month tenants or per the lease agreement term for leased tenants.
  • Landlord Notices – Landlords must give 60 days written notice for month-to-month tenants or 90 days notice if tenant has occupied the unit for a year or more.

Additionally, local rent control laws can extend notice periods even longer in cities like Los Angeles, with up to 120 days of notice required from landlords before tenants have to vacate. Proper notice periods apply to both landlords ending tenancies and tenants deciding to voluntarily vacate.

What You Need to Know About Section 8 Eviction and 90 Day Notice to Vacate in California

Illegal Eviction Proceedings in California

Landlords attempting to force tenants out unlawfully through constructive evictions, lockouts, seizure of property, or shutting off utilities will face significant penalties. California eviction laws protect tenants against these illegal measures.

Additionally, even in legal eviction cases initiated properly with valid notices, landlords still must follow strict procedures. If an eviction lawsuit (“Unlawful Detainer”) progresses, tenants have legal rights such as:

  • Filing an Answer form to dispute allegations
  • Requesting a Jury trial
  • Raising defenses against the eviction

Additionally, California has stringent laws governing the physical eviction of tenants who have lost eviction lawsuits. Sheriff’s departments oversee this final process, which requires landlords to pay substantial fees.

Bottom line – Landlords in California can’t simply lock out tenants or seize possessions because they missed a rent payment or violated a lease term without going through proper legal process in court. Doing so constitutes illegal eviction under California law.

California Laws & Penalties Regarding Illegal Evictions

California laws strictly forbid landlords from resorting to illegal “self-help” eviction tactics trying to force tenants out through:

  • Changing locks
  • Removing doors
  • Terminating essential utilities like electricity or water
  • Removing or storing tenant belongings
  • Use of intimidation tactics
  • Any means other than proper court ordered eviction case

Under Civil Code § 789.3, if landlords are found using these unlawful eviction tactics, either by threats or actions taken, tenants can sue for actual damages + $1000 or 3 times actual damages (treble damages), whichever is higher.

Landlords found guilty of illegal eviction face heavy civil penalties, damages owed to tenants, and serious hits to their reputation and rental business. Following proper legal process for all evictions uniformly applied is essential.

Move Out Inspections & Security Deposits

Before vacating any rental unit in California, tenants have a right to request an initial inspection to review the current condition of the unit with the landlord or manager present. Additionally, all tenants have a right under California law to be present for the final move out inspection.

These inspections help tenants ensure receipt of the full security deposit back after moving out minus any lawful deductions. California imposes strict limits on security deposit uses limiting deductions only to repairs of damages beyond normal wear and tear on the unit.

Some key tenant rights related to move out inspections and security deposits in California include:

  • Initial Inspection – Tenants can request an initial inspection up to 2 weeks before terminating tenancy to document the condition of unit when they first signal intent to vacate.
  • Final Inspection – Tenants must have opportunity to be present to observe and agree to the condition of the unit at the final move out inspection after vacating.
  • Security Deposit Returns – Landlords have 21 calendar days after the tenant vacates to return any deposit money minus lawful deductions itemized in writing.

Violations of these security deposit and inspection rights can lead to legal claims against the landlord per California law. The state takes financial disputes between landlords and tenants very seriously.

Details on California Security Deposit Dispute Rights

If tenants believe California security deposit law has been violated by a landlord refusing to refund the deposit, not allowing proper inspections, or making unlawful deductions, they can sue in small claims court:

  • Withholding Deposit – If the landlord does not return the deposit or provide required itemized deduction statements within 21 calendar days, they lose all rights to withhold any portion of the deposit.
  • Bad Faith Retention – If a landlord is found to be unreasonably withholding deposit funds in “bad faith,”  the judge can award the full deposit amount back plus punitive damages up to twice the amount of the actual deposit paid by the tenant.
  • Unlawful Deductions – Tenants can recover full or partial deposits if the landlord deducts for normal wear and tear or fails to provide receipts documenting repair costs. Pictures of damage and repair estimates/invoices are required.

Landlords failing to follow California security deposit statutes meticulously are asking for legal disputes. Ensuring tenants receive proper initial and final inspections while returning deposits promptly helps avoid claims.


What is a 90 Day Notice in California?

In California, a 90 day notice is a formal written notice given by a landlord to a tenant informing them that they must vacate the rental property within 90 days.

Section 8: How does Section 8 Housing relate to Eviction in California?

Section 8 is a federal housing program that provides rental assistance to low-income individuals. If a tenant receiving Section 8 benefits is facing eviction, the landlord must follow the specific procedures outlined by both federal and state law.

When is a 90 Day Notice to Vacate Required in California?

A 90 day notice to vacate in California is typically required in situations where a landlord wants to terminate a tenancy when the tenant has lived on the property for one year or more.

Eviction Notice: What Steps Are Involved in Serving an Eviction Notice in California?

An eviction notice must be in writing and served to the tenant, specifying the reason for the eviction and the timeline to vacate. In California, the process may vary depending on the circumstances.

Termination of Lease: What Happens if a Tenant Does Not Comply with the 90 Day Notice?

If a tenant does not comply with the 90 day notice to vacate, the landlord may proceed with filing for eviction through the court system in California.

Rent Arrears: Can a Landlord Terminate a Tenancy for Non-Payment of Rent?

In California, landlords have the right to terminate a tenancy if the tenant fails to pay rent on time. However, the landlord must first provide the tenant with written notice demanding payment or possession of the unit. This is commonly called a “3-Day Notice to Pay Rent or Quit”.

The tenant then has 3 calendar days to either pay the full amount of rent owed or move out of the rental unit. If the tenant does neither, after the expiration of the 3 days, the landlord can then proceed to file and serve an unlawful detainer lawsuit to evict the non-paying tenant.

If the tenant pays in full within the 3 day notice period, then the notice is satisfied and the tenancy continues. However, partial rent payments or promises to pay at a later date do not constitute proper payment requiring dismissal of eviction proceedings. The full amount demanded in the notice must be paid.

This process applies to almost all residential tenants, with very few exceptions. While termination for non-payment of rent is allowed, landlords still must meticulously follow proper notice procedures as outlined in California eviction law or risk facing penalties and a dismissed eviction case. Consultation with a tenant rights lawyer is highly recommended for questions related to landlord notices and California eviction regulations.


What is the difference between a 90 day notice and a 90-day notice to vacate in California?

A 90 day notice typically refers to a notice given by a landlord to a tenant to end a tenancy or lease agreement. On the other hand, a 90-day notice to vacate specifically requires the tenant to move out of the rental property within 90 days. The distinction lies in the specific action required.

When is a 90-day notice to vacate commonly used in California?

A 90-day notice to vacate is commonly used when a landlord wants a tenant to vacate the rental property for reasons such as termination of the tenancy or non-payment of rent. It provides a longer period for the tenant to arrange for new accommodation compared to shorter notice periods like a 3-day notice or 60-day notice.

What are the implications of receiving a 90-day notice to vacate as a tenant in California?

Receiving a 90-day notice to vacate means that you are required to vacate the rental property within 90 days. Failure to comply with the notice can lead to eviction proceedings initiated by the landlord.

Can a 90-day notice to vacate be given to a tenant receiving Section 8 assistance in California?

Yes, a 90-day notice to vacate can be given to a tenant receiving Section 8 assistance in California. However, landlords may need to follow specific guidelines and procedures when evicting such tenants, as outlined in state and federal regulations.

California 90 Day Notice to Quit | Section 8 (Subsidized Housing)
The California 90 day notice to quit form is used when the tenant is receiving “Section 8” housing assistance in a month to month lease, and the landlord decides to terminate the housing assistance program (HAP) contract. Once served with the notice, the tenant has ninety (90) days to vacate the rental property. If the tenant does not vacate the property within that time frame, the landlord has the legal authority to begin the eviction process in a California superior/trial court.