Los Angeles City Council unanimously approves emergency moratorium on 'no-fault' evictions

LOS ANGELES (KABC) -- The Los Angeles City Council on Tuesday unanimously approved an emergency ordinance to halt "no-fault" evictions to protect tenants ahead of statewide rental rules going into effect in January.

A no-fault eviction is defined as when a tenant is evicted for reasons that are no fault of their own - for instance, when the landlord ends the lease. The ordinance requires a signature from Mayor Eric Garcetti for it to go into effect, which could happen as early as this week, according to the L.A. City Attorney's office.

Under the ordinance, property owners would need a just cause to evict a tenant such as not paying rent. Rent increased more than twice as fast income between 2015 and 2018, according to U.S. census data.

Renters whose eviction notices have already expired but are still in their homes, and whose cases have not been adjudicated, would also be protected under the ordinance.

"We want to make sure that we can protect.. give those protections to as many renters as we possibly can, given the gravity of the situation," said Councilman Mitch O'Farrell.

The council was also expected to approve a second ordinance that would bar all rent increases until Jan. 1. That's when a new state law goes into effect that provides similar protections.

Gov. Gavin Newsom signed a new rent control law earlier this month that caps rent increases across the state. It limits those increases between 5% and 10% depending on the federal cost of living increase.

It also bans landlords from evicting people for no reason, meaning they could not evict tenants so that they can raise the rent for a new occupant.

But that law doesn't take effect until January 1, 2020. With that deadline fast approaching, housing advocates say landlords are now issuing eviction notices and boosting rents by outlandish amounts.
Copyright © 2021 KABC-TV. All Rights Reserved.