Accepting Partial Payment of Rent by California Landlord

5 Oct

Many of my readers are probably aware that California law allows commercial landlords to accept a partial payment of rent after service of a 3 Day Notice to Pay Rent or Quit and continue with an eviction action. This right to accept a partial payment after service of the notice is unique to commercial tenancies and is strictly dissalowed in a residential tenancy without requiring the landlord to serve new notices which include the revised balance owing.

If the tenant offers a partial payment of rent, unless there are other reasons not to accept a partial payment of rent, I recommend that the landlord accept the partial payment and have the tenant sign a receipt stating the date, time and amount of payment and an acknowledgment that there is still a balance owing, what the balance is and that the landlord is accepting the partial payment without any promises or representations and without waiving its right to bring or continue suit for eviction or collection.

If the tenant mails in or drops the partial payment off without a personal interface with the landlord or the landlord’s agent, as soon as the landlord receives the payment, it should immediately send to the tenant a notice, in accordance with the lease terms and/or via certified mail, return receipt requested, confirming the date, time and amount of payment and an acknowledgment that there
is still a balance owing, what the balance is and that the landlord is
accepting the partial payment without any promises or representations
and without waiving its right to bring or continue suit for eviction or
collection.

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