*About the statement of amount due on pay or quit notices*
I live a rent-controlled apt. in Oakland, CA that falls under a Just Cause for eviction Ordinance. I got a 3-day notice to pay or quit (by nail and mail) that subsequently turned into a UD action. When I got the 3-day notice by mail it was attached to a letter demanding a much larger amount than on the notice and that i didn't owe. Landlord filed the notice but not the letter with the board within 10 days.
1. Can I base a defense on those facts on the grounds of
a. non-compliance with Oakland ordinance, or
b. the letter is also a notice, and as such it overstates rent due and conflicts with the "3-day Notice", or
c. at least the letter causes enough confusion that it voids the notice it had accompanied
a. Non-compliance with Oakland ordinance:
8.22.360 B.7 of the ordinance says:
"Within ten (10) days of service of a notice terminating tenancy upon a tenant, a copy of the same notice and ***any accompanying materials*** must be filed with the Rent Board...Failure to file the notice within ten (10) days of service shall be a defense to any unlawful detainer action."
(This isn't merely a technical objection, because notices shouldn't overstate rent due, so that tenants aren't confused, leading to unnecessary litigation. An ordinance that requires accompanying papers to be filed seems to work hand-in-glove with that purpose.)
b. Letter is also a notice
Alternatively the letter could be thought of as a second notice to pay or quit because a pay-or-quit notice only has to include a demand to pay rent or quit without a mention of the time period (3 days) per Berryman v Gibson (1908).
If 2 conflicting 3-day notices are served simultaneously, they're void because of the confusion they cause the tenant, even if one was correct. [Housing Auth. v Cortez (Alameda Super Ct, App Dep't, Aug. 1, 1977, Civ 973)]
c. The attached letter causes the type of confusion that it would as a second notice, hence the same reasoning applies.
2. Finally, if the rent board rules that i'm entitled to a rent reduction due recent dimunition of services, does that mean that the formerly correct pay-or-quit notice now overstates rent due (and therefore should be tossed out)?