Effective January 1 of 2016, the legislature of the State of California
provided victims of domestic violence additional help in preventing further abuse.
Civil Code Section 1946.7 provides a tenant may terminate a home-rental
agreement if he/she or a household member was a victim of an act of domestic violence.
Often, these victims have to move from their homes to prevent further abuse
and victimization, but they can’t afford to move and continue to
pay their leases on their old homes. Now, the state will allow them to
terminate the lease with the following conditions:
- There is a rental agreement;
- You must notify the landlord in writing that you are terminating your
- There is a protective order or restraining order, a police report, or
a signed document from a certain kind of professional (such as a psychiatrist)
on file and available; and
- You need to move because you and/or a family member living in the same
household are the victim of sexual assault, stalking, domestic violence,
human trafficking, elder abuse and/or dependent adult abuse.
- Further, the protective order can be no older than 180 days and you must
give 14 days’ notice of you are terminating the agreement.
Please note, that after providing the written notification to your landlord,
you can move out at any time within those 14 days, but you will be responsible
for the rent for all those 14 days after giving notice.
For more information on civil code section 1946.7, and the information
needed on the written notice to your landlord, see the California Legislative Website: