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Money back from illegal landlord

Discussion in 'Roomate & Joint Leases' started by Manoj, Oct 23, 2019.

  1. Manoj

    Manoj Law Topic Starter New Member

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    Jurisdiction:
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    Hi Greetings,
    Before 1 week, I came to CA (Bay area) for some job. While seeking a room, I found a landlord who let me to rent in his house. I paid the rent for the room in advance. Unfortunately I got fired from the job after 10 days. I asked for money back for the days I did not stay in the room. And the landlord refused me to do so.
    Conditions:
    1. There was no lease signing performed
    2. The room I rented was of the landlord's son's room. His son was out of town, so he rented me for that uncertain period of time until his son does not return. If his son would return within 3 days, I would have to evict the room within 3 days. (This is inferred from the situation. No written or oral agreement on this).
    3. The house was not registered for renting. Specially that particular room was not registered.
    Can I sue for this case against landlord? Is the landlord legal ? I have proof of payment made for the rent.
     
  2. zddoodah

    zddoodah Well-Known Member

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    For what period of time did you pay rent? A week? Multiple weeks? Multiple months?

    Registered with whom or what?

    Anyone can sue anyone for anything. If you want an informed analysis of your chances of succeeding, you'll need to answer my questions.

    I have no idea what this question might mean. Except as it relates to immigration, the notion of a person being "legal" or "illegal" has no meaning.
     
  3. adjusterjack

    adjusterjack Super Moderator

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    I think OP is alleging that the rental unit was not a legal rental unit. He is wrong, of course, because there is no law against renting out a room in one's home. CA has a statute that addresses renting out a room in one's home to a lodger. And I know of no registration requirement for doing so.
     
    Michael Wechsler likes this.
  4. Michael Wechsler

    Michael Wechsler Administrator Staff Member

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    If you think it's worth pursuing a claim in small claims court, you may be able to try. But from what you're telling me, you're going to have a difficult time justifying why the money should be refunded. You're claiming that the agreement was that the landlord would have an option to early terminate the lease with three days notice should his son return not that you had a right to early terminate. It seems here you're hoping you can use some method to compel the landlord to pay you money, such as someone who discovers they have an illegal lease and eviction might not be an option. Except you don't even have a lease. Nor are you planning to stay there. You're probably better off considering this a learning experience and making sure you've got some written agreement with your most important rights included.
     

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