Lara v. Menchini

Facts: A residential landlord enters into a lease agreement with a tenant as the sole occupant. The tenant rents rooms to a subtenant. The tenant fails to pay rent and the landlord names and serves the tenant with a three-day notice to pay rent. Before the three-day notice expires, the subtenant tenders the full amount of delinquent rent to the landlord, which the landlord rejects. The notice period expires, and the tenant and landlord files an unlawful detainer (UD) action. The tenant vacates and the subtenant remains in possession.

Claim: The subtenant seeks to retain occupancy claiming their tender of payment prior to expiration of the three-day notice entitles a subtenant to remain in possession.

Counterclaim: The landlord claims the subtenant may not retain possession after attempting to tender payment since the tenant is the sole occupant by provisions in the lease agreement and the tenant failed to pay the delinquent rent before the notice expired.

Holding: The California supreme court holds the landlord is entitled to possession of the premises since the tenant named in the lease  failed to pay the delinquent rent causing a forfeiture of the lease agreement and a termination of all rights to occupancy under the lease agreement. [Lara v. Menchini (2021) 70 C5th 1]

Read Lara v. Menchini in full here.

Related Reading:

Property Management

Chapter 25: Delinquent rent and the three-day notice