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need to "answer" a summons in 5 days

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Corona, Ca. I have rented from landlord since 11/00. We (fiance) and I just won legal custody of his 5 & 9yr old. We told landlord we would move by 6-1-01... he origionally agreed. I pay my electric through him...he told me the charges went up this month and charged me almost 20 cents/kw. Called Edison (elect co.) they said it should be 14 cents/kw. I paid my rent and electric (that HE charged me) in cash as always...and he gave me a signed receipt. I have every receipt I have gotten from him including deposit and 1st mo/rent. He served a 3 day pay rent or quit notice on me on 5-4-01 which came AFTER he shut my electric off on 5-3-01 and I had the sherrif's dept come out to make him turn it back on. Now (today) I rcv'd a summons that he is sueing me for this month's rent and electric that I already paid. What do I do??? No money for an attorney by the way...all my money going for new place...moving on the 19th of May. Help please!!!



The 3-day notice to Pay Rent or Quit should have stated exactly the amount of rent that was owing, and for what dates. If you had receipts showing that you paid that rent, you should have brought it to the landlord's attention, formally. Now, except for negotiating with the landlord, you will have to file an answer to the lawsuit, and go to court.

You should be sure that there is no confusion between rent and charges for electric service. In California, charges which are "like rent" may be treated as rent. Make sure that your receipts specify how much you paid, and the dates for which it was accepted as rent.

Is there any way that you withheld any money that he thought he had coming?

mary hartman

Go to court and show the judge how he is gouging you on the electricity...

The judge will throw the book at him.

PS...are you dumb?

NO ONE pays cash, that is a tip off that the apartment is ILLEGAL...and of course YOU cant get the electric in your name if there is NO METER<<<<<



The electricity cost is not involved in the unlawful detainer case at all. You say that you paid what he asked for electricity. If you tried to deduct, then you are guilty of unlawful detainer in California. dj1 can't think. Its not the judges' choice.

The landlord can sell you electricity. Edison has raised the rates enormously these last few months (read the newpapers). I don't have Edison at home, myself, but my tenants who do are screaming (I mean screaming). dj1 cannot comprehend how we have de-regulation and competition and even private companies that buy from Edison and re-sell to consumers. So can the landlord.

When you got the 3-day notice, what was the amount demanded? Was it exactly 1 month's rent. Had the landlord taken what you meant as a rent payment, and applied it to the electricity charges, leaving more money to be paid as rent? He can do that. Check the 3-day notice, and read the unlawful detainer complaint. If necessary, call the landlord and ask him (nicely) to explain.

If the amount shown on the 3-day notice is correct, and you have a receipt that the judge will recognize as a receipt for that amount for that rental period, the landlord will not get an unlawful detainer. But if he is correct, and your receipt is not convinceable as that amount for that period, then the unlawful detainer will succeed.

Go over your notice and complaint, and get it straightened out as to what you are being sued for. If you have already paid everything, then you need not be afraid to go to court. But if there is something that you withheld, and you do not have a receipt for the amount that he demanded, then discuss it with the landlord and pay him what you owe, including his legal costs, and get him to drop the suit.

This dj1 (aka mary hartman, aka mee, pee and others) is a pain in the butt. He doesn't know what he is saying, he has no logic, he has never been in court, he doesn't understand how courts work or how they make decisions, but he won't shut up, even when he doesn't know what he is talking about. What a jerk!

[Edited by LL on 05-11-2001 at 01:28 AM]

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