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Owner Move-In Evictions
Proving a Bad Faith OMI

Proving a Bad Faith OMI

Proving a Bad Faith OMI


Proving a Bad Faith OMI

In cities with strong rent and eviction control laws, like San Francisco, Oakland, and Berkeley landlords must have a “just cause” to evict tenants from their rental homes. One of these just causes is an owner move-in eviction (“OMI”). If a landlord wants to live in their property or have a close family member move in, the law permits them to evict the tenant. However, there are detailed restrictions on when and how landlords can evict a tenant for an OMI.

Landlords must initiate an OMI eviction in good faith. When a landlord evicts a tenant in bad-faith tenants can take legal action to seek compensation. Proving that you were subjected to a bad-faith OMI eviction is difficult, but it can be done with help from a skilled tenant attorney.

The Landlord’s Principal Place of Residency

For an owner move-in eviction to be legitimate, the owner must occupy the unit must as their principal place of residency for three years. This means the unit must become their primary home; they cannot justify an eviction by simply staying in the unit occasionally.

Factors for whether a home is your landlord’s principal residence include:

  • Whether the property is listed as their home address on their driver’s license, vehicle registration, voter registration, and other important documents
  • Utilities are set up and bills are in their name at the property
  • Whether they moved their personal belongings into the unit
  • Whether they file a home owner’s tax exemption for the unit or another property
  • Where they spend the majority of their time

If your attorney can demonstrate that the unit is NOT the landlord’s principal residence, they can likely prove a bad faith OMI. 

Other evidence of bad faith may include, but is not limited to, any of the following:

  • the landlord failed to file the eviction notice with the Rent Board
  • the landlord or relative did not move into the unit within three months of recoveing possession and then occupy it as their principal residence for a minimum of 36 consecutive months,
  • the landlord or relative lacks a legitimate reason for not moving into the unit within three months and/or then occupying said unit as their principal residence for a minimum of 36 consecutive months
  • the landlord did not file a statement of occupancy with the Rent Board
  •   the landlord rented the unit to a new tenant

Consult with an Experienced Wrongful Eviction Attorney Today

Wolford Wayne represents tenants who are wrongfully evicted, including those forced out due to a bad faith OMI. If you have received an OMI eviction notice, please contact us today to discuss your situation.

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For more information or to discuss your legal situation, call us today at (415) 649-6203 for a phone consultation or submit an inquiry below. Please note our firm can only assist tenants residing in San Francisco, Oakland & Berkeley.

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