Section 12.14 Evictions under Section 37.9(a)(8)

(Amended June 18, 1991; Subsection (c) amended March 7, 1995; Subsection (d) added October 20, 1998; amended June 10, 2008; Subsections (a)-(d) amended and Subsections (e)-(f) added November 21, 2017, effective January 1, 2018)

(a) Definition of Landlord. For purposes of an eviction under Section 37.9(a)(8) of the Ordinance, the term "landlord" shall mean a natural person, or group of natural persons, and for evictions under Ordinance Section 37.9(a)(8)(i) only, the term “landlord” shall also mean two individuals registered as Domestic Partners as defined in San Francisco Administrative Code Chapter 62.1-62.8, who in good faith hold a recorded fee interest in the property and meet one of the following requirements:

(1) held a recorded fee interest of at least 10%, or a recorded equitable interest under contract of sale of at least 10%, or in the case of Domestic Partners a combined ownership of record of at least 10%, which interest was recorded on or before February 21, 1991, and continues to hold at least such a 10% interest on the date of service of the notice to vacate; or

(2) holds a recorded fee interest of at least 25%, or a recorded equitable interest under contract of sale of at least 25%, or in the case of Domestic Partners a combined ownership of record of at least 25%, on the date of service of the notice to vacate.

(b) Information to Accompany Notice to Vacate. In addition to general eviction notice requirements, a landlord who endeavors to recover possession under Ordinance Section 37.9(a)(8) shall provide the tenant with the following documents and information in writing on or before service of the notice to vacate and file a copy of same with the Rent Board within 10 days after service of the notice to vacate on the tenant, together with a copy of the notice to vacate and proof of service upon the tenant:

(1) the identity and percentage of ownership of all persons holding a full or partial percentage ownership in the property;

(2) the name(s) of the landlord endeavoring to recover possession and, if applicable, the name(s) and relationship of the relative(s) for whom possession is being sought and a description of the current residence of the person(s) for whom possession is being sought;

(3) the dates the current percentages of ownership were recorded;

(4) a description of all residential properties owned, in whole or in part, by the landlord and, if applicable, a description of all residential properties owned, in whole or in part, by the landlord's relative for whom possession is being sought;

(5) the current rent for the unit and a statement that if the unit is offered for rent during the five-year period following service of the notice to vacate under Section 37.9(a)(8),  the tenant has the right to re-rent the unit at the same rent, as adjusted by Ordinance Section 37.9B(a);

(6) the contents of Ordinance Section 37.9B, by providing a copy of same;

(7) the right the tenant(s) may have to relocation costs under Ordinance Section 37.9C, the amount of those relocation costs, and a copy of Section 37.9C;

(8) a declaration executed by the landlord under penalty of perjury stating:

(i) the reason why the landlord or relative is moving from his/her current residence to the unit for which possession is being sought; (ii) that the landlord seeks to recover possession of the unit in good faith, without ulterior reasons and with honest intent, for use or occupancy as the principal residence of the landlord or the landlord’s relative (identified by name and relation to the landlord), for a period of at least 36 continuous months, as set forth in Ordinance Sections 37.9(a)(8)(i) and (ii); (iii) whether the landlord served a notice to vacate pursuant to Ordinance Section 37.9(a)(8) for a different unit; and, (iv) whether the landlord has recovered possession of other rental units in the City and County of San Francisco for any reason under Ordinance Section 37.9(a) other than nonpayment of rent in which the tenant displaced from such rental unit had resided for at least 36 consecutive months;

(9) a warning that the tenant must submit a statement to the landlord within 30 days of service of the notice to vacate, with supporting evidence, if the tenant claims to be a member of a protected class under Ordinance Sections 37.9(i) or (j), and that failure to do so shall be deemed an admission that the tenant is not protected by Sections 37.9(i) or (j);

(10) a form prepared by the Rent Board stating that a tenant’s failure to timely act in response to a notice to vacate may result in a lawsuit by the landlord to evict the tenant, that advice regarding the notice to vacate is available from the Rent Board, and that the tenant may be eligible for affordable housing programs through the Mayor’s Office of Housing and Community Development; and

(11) a blank change of address form prepared by the Rent Board that the tenant can use to keep the Rent Board apprised of any future change of address.

(c) Principal Place of Residence. For purposes of an eviction under Section 37.9(a)(8) of the Ordinance, a landlord or landlord's relative can have only ONE "principal place of residence" which is defined as the permanent or primary home of the party claiming that a unit has that status attached to it. It is a unit that the party occupies for more than temporary or transitory purposes. Evidence that a unit is or is intended to be the party's "principal place of residence" includes, but is not limited to, the following elements, a compilation of which lends greater credibility to the claim of “principal place of residence of a party” whereas the presence of only one element may not support such claim:                        

(1) the subject premises are listed as the party’s place of residence on any motor vehicle registration, driver’s license, automobile insurance policy, homeowner’s or renter’s insurance policy, and with the party’s current employer or any public agency, including State and local taxing authorities;

(2) utilities are installed under the party’s name at the subject premises;

(3) the party’s personal possessions have been moved into the subject premises;

(4) a homeowner’s tax exemption has been issued in the party’s name for the subject premises;

(5) the party’s current voter registration is for the subject premises;

(6) a U.S. Postal Change of Address form has been filed requesting that mail be forwarded to the subject premises;

(7) the subject premises are the place the party normally returns to as his/her home, exclusive of military service, hospitalization, vacation, or travel necessitated by employment;

(8) notice to move at another dwelling unit was given in order to move into the subject premises; and

(9) the party sold or placed on the market for sale the home he/she occupied prior to the subject premises.

(d) Definition of Disability for Protected Status. A tenant is disabled under Ordinance Section 37.9(i)(1)(B)(i) if the tenant meets the standard for blindness or disability under the federal Supplemental Security Income/California State Supplemental Program (SSI/SSP). In determining whether a tenant is disabled, a finder of fact shall consider relevant evidence, including:

(1) findings by any government entity concerning a disability;

(2) testimony concerning the disability; and

(3) medical evidence concerning the disability.

(e) Evidence of a Lack of Good Faith. For purposes of an eviction under Section 37.9(a)(8) of the Ordinance, evidence that is relevant to determining whether a landlord acted or is acting in good faith may include, but is not limited to, any of the following:

(1) the landlord has failed to file the notice to vacate with the Rent Board as required by Ordinance Sections 37.9(c) and 37.9B(c);

(2) the landlord or relative for whom the tenant was evicted did not move into the rental unit within three months after the landlord recovered possession and then occupy said unit as that person’s principal residence for a minimum of 36 consecutive months;

(3) the landlord or relative for whom the tenant was evicted lacks a legitimate, bona fide reason for not moving into the unit within three months after the recovery of possession and/or then occupying said unit as that person’s principal residence for a minimum of 36 consecutive months;

(4) the landlord did not file a Statement of Occupancy with the Rent Board as required by Ordinance Section 37.9(a)(8)(vii) and Section 12.14(f) of these Rules and Regulations;

(5) the landlord violated Ordinance Section 37.9B during the five-year period following service of the notice to vacate under Ordinance Section 37.9(a)(8) by renting the unit to a new tenant at a rent greater than that which would have been the rent had the tenant who had been required to vacate remained in continuous occupancy and the rental unit remained subject to the Ordinance;

(6) the landlord served a notice to vacate pursuant to Ordinance Section 37.9(a)(8) for a different unit and has not sought a rescission or withdrawal of that notice;

(7) the landlord has recovered possession of multiple rental units in the same building within 180 days of the service of the notice to vacate pursuant to Ordinance Section 37.9(a)(8); and/or

(8) the landlord completed buyout negotiations as defined in Ordinance Section 37.9E(c) with any other tenant(s) in the building.

(f) Statement of Occupancy. A landlord who seeks to recover possession of a unit pursuant to Ordinance Section 37.9(a)(8) on or after January 1, 2018 must complete a Statement of Occupancy under penalty of perjury on a form to be prepared by the Rent Board that discloses whether the landlord has recovered possession of the unit. The landlord shall file a Statement of Occupancy with the Rent Board within 90 days after the date of service of the notice to vacate pursuant to Ordinance Section 37.9(a)(8), and shall file an updated Statement of Occupancy every 90 days thereafter; provided, however, if the Statement of Occupancy discloses that the landlord has recovered possession of the unit, the landlord shall then be required to file updated Statements of Occupancy once a year for five years, no later than 12 months, 24 months, 36 months, 48 months and 60 months after the date the landlord recovered possession of the unit. Each Statement of Occupancy filed after the landlord has recovered possession of the unit shall disclose the date of recovery of possession. If the Statement of Occupancy discloses that the landlord is no longer endeavoring to recover possession of the unit under Ordinance Section 37.9(a)(8) and the Rent Board has granted the landlord’s written request for rescission of the notice to vacate pursuant to Ordinance Section 37.9B(e), no further Statements of Occupancy need be filed.

(1) If the Statement of Occupancy discloses that the landlord has not yet recovered possession of the unit, the landlord shall provide the following information:

(i) whether the landlord is still pursuing an eviction of the tenant and, if not, the landlord shall: include proof that the landlord has notified the tenant in writing that the notice to vacate has been rescinded and that the Rent Board has granted the landlord’s written request for rescission of the notice to vacate pursuant to Ordinance Section 37.9B(e); state whether any tenant still occupies the unit and provide the name(s) and contact information for each tenant still in occupancy; and, if any tenant still occupies the unit after written rescission of the notice to vacate and/or rescission by the Rent Board of the notice of constraints, include proof of the most recent rental payment received from the tenant and proof that the landlord has deposited or cashed it;

(ii) whether the landlord has filed an unlawful detainer action against the tenant to recover possession of the unit;

(iii) the identity and percentage of ownership of all persons holding a full or partial percentage ownership in the property;

(iv) the dates the current percentages of ownership were recorded;

(v) the name(s) of the landlord endeavoring to recover possession and, if applicable, the name(s) and relationship of the relative(s) for whom possession is being sought, a description of the current residence of the landlord or relative(s) for whom possession is being sought and an explanation of why the owner or relative is moving from his/her current residence to the unit;

(vi) a description of all residential properties owned, in whole or in part, by the landlord and, if applicable, a description of all residential properties owned, in whole or in part, by the landlord's relative for whom possession is being sought;

(vii) the current rent for the unit;

(viii) whether and when the landlord served a notice to vacate pursuant to Ordinance Section 37.9(a)(8)(i) for a different unit, and the address of such unit; and

(ix) whether and when the landlord has recovered possession of any other rental unit in the same building subsequent to the service of the notice to vacate pursuant to Ordinance Section 37.9(a)(8).

(2) If the Statement of Occupancy discloses that the landlord has already recovered possession of the unit and the owner or relative for whom the tenant was evicted is currently occupying the unit as that person’s principal residence, the landlord shall provide the following information:

(i) the name(s) and ownership interest of the current occupant(s) of the unit, and the date such occupancy commenced;

(ii) at least two forms of the supporting documentation specified in Section 12.14(f)(4) below;

(iii) whether the current occupant’s personal possessions have been moved into the unit;

(iv) the rent charged for the unit if any;

(v) whether the subject unit is listed as the owner’s or relative’s place of residence on any motor vehicle registration, driver’s license, automobile insurance policy, homeowner’s or renter’s insurance policy, is used by or for the person’s current employer and any public agency, including state and local taxing authorities;

(vi) whether utilities are installed at the unit under the owner’s or relative’s name;

(vii) whether the owner occupant has claimed a homeowner’s tax exemption for the subject unit;

(viii) whether the occupant filed a U.S. Postal Service Change of Address form;

(ix) whether the subject unit is the place the owner or relative normally returns to as his/her home, exclusive of military service, hospitalization, vacation, or travel necessitated by employment;

(x) whether notice to move at another dwelling unit was given in order to move into the subject unit; and

(xi) whether the owner occupant sold or placed on the market for sale the home he/she occupied prior to the subject unit.

(3) If the Statement of Occupancy discloses that the landlord has already recovered possession of the unit and the owner or relative for whom the tenant was evicted is not occupying the unit as that person’s principal residence, the landlord shall provide the following information:

(i) whether the owner or relative for whom the tenant was evicted ever occupied the unit as that person’s principal residence, the dates of such occupancy, and the reasons why the unit is no longer occupied by that person;

(ii) if the owner or relative for whom the tenant was evicted never occupied the unit as that person’s principal residence, the reasons why occupancy has not yet commenced;

(iii) If the owner or relative for whom the tenant was evicted has moved out of the unit within five years after service of the notice to vacate under Ordinance Section 37.9(a)(8), a copy of the written offer to the displaced tenant to re-rent the unit at a rent no greater than what the tenant would have paid had the tenant remained in continuous occupancy and the unit remained subject to the Rent Ordinance; and

(iv) If the owner or relative for whom the tenant was evicted has moved out of the unit within five years after service of the notice to vacate under Ordinance Section 37.9(a)(8) and the unit was re-rented to someone other than the displaced tenant, the amount of rent paid by the current tenant.

(4) Where the Statement of Occupancy discloses that the owner or relative for whom the tenant was evicted is currently occupying the unit as that person’s principal residence, the landlord shall attach to the Statement of Occupancy at least two of the following forms of supporting documentation. Confidential information may be redacted from the supporting documentation prior to filing it with the Rent Board.

(i) current motor vehicle registration, plus a copy of the current insurance policy for the vehicle that shows the name of the insured, the address of the unit and the period of coverage, with proof of payment;

(ii) current driver’s license;

(iii) Social Security statement of benefits that shows the name of the recipient, the address of the unit and the current period of coverage;

(iv) current voter registration;

(v) current homeowner’s or renter’s insurance policy for the contents of the unit showing the name of the insured, the address of the unit and the period of coverage, with proof of payment; and/or

(vi) the most recent state or federal tax return that shows the name and address of the owner or relative occupying the unit and proof of filing.

(5) The Rent Board shall make all reasonable efforts to send the displaced tenant a copy of each Statement of Occupancy with supporting documentation within 30 days of the date of filing, or a notice that the landlord did not timely file a Statement of Occupancy if no Statement of Occupancy was timely filed.

(6) The Rent Board shall impose an administrative penalty on any landlord who fails to timely file a Statement of Occupancy with the supporting documentation required by Section 12.14(f)(4) of these Rules and Regulations, in violation of Ordinance Section 37.9(a)(8)(vii) and Section 12.14(f). Penalties shall be in the following amounts: $250 for the first violation, $500 for the second violation, and $1,000 for every subsequent violation. The procedure for the imposition, enforcement, collection, and administrative review of the administrative penalty shall be governed by Administrative Code Chapter 100, “Procedures Governing the Imposition of Administrative Fines,” which is hereby incorporated in its entirety.