The New Year is just around the corner and so are the new California laws that are about to take effect. Here at CIC, we want to keep you up-to-date on some of the changes that will directly impact the multifamily housing industry, this year.

Here is a list of relevant legislative changes to keep in mind, as 2015 begins.

ELECTRONIC SIGNATURES (Assembly Bill No. 2747) Previously, electronic transactions regarding security deposits were not permitted. However, with AB 2747 electronic document signatures for lease and rental agreements are now legally binding. For more information, please visit http://leginfo.legislature.ca.gov.

SERVERS OF PROCESS (Assembly Bill No. 2256) Upon displaying a current driver’s license or other identification, an individual performing service of process in accordance with the law will be granted access to a gated community for a reasonable period of time for the sole purpose of performing their duty. Servers of process no longer must identify the individual they are going to serve when accessing a gated community. For more information, please visit http://leginfo.legislature.ca.gov.

WATER SUBMETERS (Assembly Bill No. 2451) For the first time, submeters that measure water usage may be tested in one county and used in another. Additionally, when a submeter is not in proper working condition, it may be marked with the phrase “Out of Order.” AB 2451 provides protection whereby an owner, user or operator of a submeter that has been properly maintained, who commercially submits it for testing, is protected from criminal prosecution and will not be liable for fines or other penalties. For more information, please visit http://leginfo.legislature.ca.gov.

POSSESSION BY DECLARATION (Assembly Bill No. 1513)  This bill provides a timely and orderly procedure for squatters to vacate the premises of a vacant residential property in lieu of arrest. AB 1513 is applicable in Lancaster, Palmdale and Ukiah until January 1, 2018 whereby the legislation will be repealed unless a statute is enacted to delete or extend the previously mentioned date. For more information, please visit http://leginfo.legislature.ca.gov/.

ELECTRIC VEHICLE CHARGING STATIONS (Assembly Bill No. 2565) applies to electric vehicle charging stations. Beginning July 1, 2015 a lessor of a rental property must approve a written request of a lessee for the installation of an electric vehicle charging station at a parking space designated for the tenant, if certain requirements are met. Residents submitting a request must pay all costs for the installation, maintenance and removal of the vehicle charging station and are required to carry liability insurance. For more information, please visit http://leginfo.legislature.ca.gov.

PEST CONTROL (Senate Bill No. 1167) Owners are now required to exterminate the pests and the conditions that are determined to be contributing to the infestation. In good faith, the property owner must attempt to destroy the rodents by appropriate means such as poisoning or trapping, but also must look to identify and resolve the conditions causing the infestation. For more information, please visit http://leginfo.legislature.ca.gov.

PERSONAL AGRICULTURE (Assembly Bill No. 2561) This bill ensures that agricultural practices will not interfere with the rental property. All cultivation of plant crops not limited to portable containers must be approved by the landlord. AB 2561 also gives landlords the ability to limit synthetic chemical products used to grow plant crops. In regards to personal agriculture, the landlord reserves the right to enter into a written agreement regarding the payment of any excess bills from the individual’s activities. For more information, please visit http://leginfo.legislature.ca.gov.

PAID SICK DAYS (Assembly Bill No. 1522)  Beginning July 1, 2015 any employee who works in California for 30 or more days within a year from the time the individual began working is entitled to paid sick days that accrue at a rate of not less than one hour for every 30 hours of time worked. Each individual becomes eligible on the 90th day of employment and accrued paid sick days will carry over to the next year of employment. For more information, please visit https://leginfo.legislature.ca.gov.

By: Laura Mowry

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