Bed bugs are possibly the worst type of pest to find in your home and cause the most anxiety for residents. Luckily for California residents, as of January 2017, tighter laws are in place to protect tenants from bed bug infestations in their homes. If you are preparing to rent a new apartment in California, make sure you ask the landlord for bed bug disclosures, and if you currently have bed bugs in your home, make sure you familiarize yourself with the following laws so you know what your rights are and how to approach your landlord.
If you are currently looking for an apartment, make sure you familiarize yourself with the following laws:
- Civil Code §1954.602: A landlord cannot show or rent a unit that he or she knows has a bed bug infestation. If the unit happens to have a bed bug infestation but it is not apparent, and the landlord does not know about it, then the landlord cannot be held responsible for showing a unit with bed bugs. If you have been shown a unit that very clearly has a bed bug infestation, contact our landlord-tenant attorneys immediately so we can help you seek the compensation you deserve for any damages you incurred from being in a bed bug infested apartment.
If you have already detected bed bugs in your apartment, make sure to familiarize yourself with the following laws:
- Civil Code §1954.603: If you rented your apartment after July 1, 2017, your landlord was required to provide you with a bed bug informational notice when you moved in. If you rented your apartment before July 1, 2017, your landlord was required to provide you with a bed bug informational notice by January 1, 2018. Additionally, landlords are also required to notify their tenants of the procedure for reporting bed bug infestations. If you still have not received a copy of the bed bug notice or the procedures for reporting a bed bug infestation, contact your landlord immediately to ask for a copy.
- Civil Code §1942.5: If you detect bed bugs in your apartment or if you suspect that there might be bed bugs in your apartment, and you provide notice to your landlord, your landlord can not retaliate against you. In practice, this means your landlord cannot evict you for reporting the existence or suspicion of bed bugs in your apartment.
- Civil Code §1954.604: If you detect bed bugs in your apartment, your landlord is required to not only get rid of the infestation but also conduct follow up inspections of both your unit and all surrounding areas to make sure bed bugs are completely eliminated from your living space.
The above is merely a brief summary of bed bug laws in California. For a complete list and review of bed bug laws in California, contact the attorneys at Willougby Brod. Our attorneys have helped unsuspecting tenants seek compensation for bed bug infestations in their homes due to the negligence of their landlords. Contact us at (800) 427-7020 or visit us online to schedule your free consultation today.
(image courtesy of Brandon Griggs)