Legal Question in Real Estate Law in California

I found out that my last place of tenancy was an illegal sublet at a large apartment complex. The "landlord" decided to end the terms per text message due to my inability to pay rent on time for that month. He offered me a solution and sent me an addendum via email asking me to vacate within 30 days. Neither one signed it. He is now threatening litigation a month later if I do not pay him for a canceled lease fee of one month's rent, past due rent, and other erroneous charges I did not agree to. My question is will this hold up in court.?

For reference, I'm in Los Angeles, CA.


Asked on 3/28/22, 10:08 pm

1 Answer from Attorneys

Timothy McCormick Haapala, Thompson & Abern, LLP

Merely sending you an addendum does not bind you to it. On the other hand if assent was given by other conduct, it can become binding without being signed. For example, if I send a message saying, "If you give my mom $3,000, I will give you my used car," and you give my mom $3,000, I owe you the car. A signed written agreement is only a record of a biding contract. A contract is the agreement itself between the parties. Some contracts require a signed written document to make them enforceable. Most do not. On the other hand, a unilateral demand that is not agreed to or complied with in any way does not form a contract. The nature of a contract is agreement or consent.

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Answered on 3/29/22, 11:47 am


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