Is Your 3-Day Notice to Pay Rent or Quit Valid?

Is Your 3-Day Notice to Pay Rent or Quit Valid?

How do you know if you got served a valid 3-day notice to pay rent or quit? What are the kinds of things to look out for? In one of our earlier blog posts, 3-Day Notices in Commercial Leases, we discussed the importance of the proper service of a valid notice to pay rent or quit.

Here, we will analyze the specific elements that are required to establish proper, valid, code-compliant notice and service as a prerequisite to a commercial unlawful detainer action. Strict compliance with notice and service, as delineated in California Civil Procedure § 1161, et seq. (“CCP”) is always required.

Here are some TIPS on verifying the validity of your 3-Day Notice to Pay Rent or Quit (“Notice”): 

  • Make sure your Notice is written or typed: Consult a Real Estate Attorney for a quick drafting of this form; or there are several pre-generated online forms you can fill out on your own. The bottom line is that it has to be in writing.
  • Make sure you give at least 3 days’ notice: If you’re a tenant, always check the date. Make sure you were given full 3 days’ notice to pay rent or quit.
  • Make sure the Notice clearly shows you the amount owed: By law, your Landlord must state the exact amount due unless it is a commercial tenancy where other rules may apply.
  • Make sure the written Notice contains the Receiver’s NAME, TELEPHONE NUMBER, and ADDRESS OF THE PERSON TO WHOM THE RENT PAYMENT SHALL BE MADE TO.

(Notice Requirement Under CCP § 1161)

 Now, that you know what would be a valid Notice – it is important to serve it properly. 

Here are some TIPS on proper service of your 3-Day Notice to Pay Rent or Quit: 

For residential tenants: 

  • A copy of the notice must be personally delivered to the tenant
  • If the tenant is unavailable at their residence, leave the copy with someone else who is of appropriate age, and then mail a copy to the tenant at his/her residence
  • If no one else is available, post the copy in a noticeable place on the property, deliver it to someone at the address, and mail the same copy to the tenant at the property address

For commercial tenants:

  • Check your lease for specific notice requirements. The default rules for notice can be altered by the express terms of the commercial lease. If the lease does not control, then you should follow the additional requirements set forth below.
  • A copy of the notice must also be personally delivered to the tenant
  • If there is no one available at property, leave the copy with someone else who is of appropriate age, and then mail a copy to the tenant at his/her business
  • If no one else available, post the copy in a noticeable place on the property, deliver it to someone at the address, and mail the same copy to the tenant at the property address

(Service Requirement Under CCP § 1162(b))

Notice in an unlawful detainer case is always heavily scrutinized by the court and usually by the defendant. There is no room for error because the entire unlawful detainer action can fail if the 3 day notice is not properly served.

At Schorr Law, we are experienced in handling all types of real estate matters, including your landlord-tenant issues. To see if you qualify for a free 30-minute consultation regarding your matter, please contact us by phone, email, or send us a message through our contact form.

See related: Commercial Leases: Notice to the Landlord and Tenant

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