Receivership FAQs

Who Can Ask the Superior Court to Appoint a Health & Safety Receiver Over Property?

(1)Local Enforcement Agency; (2) Tenant; (3) Tenant Association or Organization (Cal. H&S 17980.7(c)).

What is the Legal Authority to Petition for the Receiver’s Appointment on an Ex Parte Basis?

Rules 3.1175 through 3.1184 of the California Rules of Court outline ex parte applications. Oftentimes, this is the only option when faced with a serious health and safety issue.

What is the Specific Legal Authority of the Receiver?

See H&S 17980.7(c) for exhaustive and comprehensive list of tools/authority available to the Receiver once appointed. Courts also have broad discretion within their equitable receivership powers to define the full scope of powers available to a receiver.

If a city or county’s code enforcement process requires a lengthy notice, hearing and appeal, does the Health and Safety Code provisions relating to appointment of a Receiver stand apart from those requirements/process/procedure? Or can we pursue alternate remedies at the same time (criminal prosecution, civil nuisance abatement, administrative citations, for example).

The H&S 17980.7 remedy can be brought independently from any other matters, as (g) states: “these remedies shall be in addition to those provided by any other law.”

What are the Rules Relating to Grounds for Issuance of Notice to Repair or Abate: 17980.6? What is the trigger?

Any violation of state or municipal code triggers the potential receivership remedy. H&S § 17980.6 and §17980.7 apply to all buildings, and there is no restriction which would limit the applicability to occupied or commercial buildings. A 17980.6 Notice can be issued to abandoned, occupied, residential, commercial buildings. H&S § 17980.6. The conditions present must be “so extensive and of such a nature that the health & safety of residents or the public is substantially endangered.” H&S § 17980.6. That threat can be to the occupants or the public at large.

How Much Time Must the City/County Give to Repair or Abate Pursuant to a 17980.6 Notice?

The California Health & Safety Code requires only a “reasonable time” to comply with a violation notice under 17980.6 regardless of what a local ordinance or regulation may otherwise require.

How Much Time is Considered “Reasonable Time?”

What constitutes a reasonable amount of time will depend on the facts and circumstances surrounding the individual property. Once the “reasonable time” to repair/abate has expired, the only remaining Notice requirement to owner/recorded interests, prior to filing of the ex parte emergency application/petition, is the [at least] three day notice that the City/County intends to file the petition.

What Happens when a Property Fails to Comply with the 17980.6 Notice and Correct the Violations?

The enforcement agency, tenant, or tenant association or organization may seek and the court may order, the appointment of a receiver for the substandard building. §17980.7(c).