California Law Does Not Allow The Withholding Of Rent Due To Alleged Violations Of The Federal Americans With Disabilities Act

>A California tenant is not permitted to withhold rent on the basis of alleged violations of the Americans With Disabilities Act (“ADA”). Title III of the ADA bans disability discrimination in places of public accommodation. It provides in part that “[n]o individual shall be discriminated against on the basis of disability in the full and equal enjoyment of the goods, services, facilities, privileges, advantages, or accommodations of any place of public accommodation by any person who owns, leases, or operates a place of public accommodation.” [42 U.S.C. § 12182] The ADA does not apply to privately owned houses, apartments, and condominiums. [Birke v Oakwood Worldwide (2009) 169 CA4th 1540, 1552] At most, the public accommodations accessibility requirements in Title III of the ADA [42 USC §12182(a)] may apply to privately owned facilities to the extent that areas of the facility are open to the public (not just renters), such as leasing offices, parking lots, and pathways from the public street to the public accommodations. [See, e.g., Nicholls v Holiday Panay Marina, LP (2009) 173 CA4th 966] However, the ADA does not provide tenants with a right to withhold rent based on alleged violations of the ADA.  Moreover, California’s implied warranty of habitability has not been extended to alleged violations of the ADA. [See, Code Civ. Proc. § 1174.2]

For further information, please contact Ruzicka, Wallace & Coughlin, LLP at (949) 748-3600; website: www.rwclegal.com. 

The law firm of Ruzicka, Wallace & Coughlin, LLP represents landlords, property management companies, institutional and private lenders, employers and insurance companies throughout the State of California in real estate, business and employment litigation. The information provided herein is for general interest only and should not be relied upon or construed as legal advice. 

© 2016 Ruzicka, Wallace & Coughlin, LLP.