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Areas of Practice


Bracamontes & Vlasak, P.C.

San Francisco Office
220 Montgomery Street
Suite 2100
San Francisco, CA 94104

Oakland Office
1901 Harrison Street
Suite 1590
Oakland, CA 94612
Phone: 415.835.6777
San Francisco Personal Injury


Bay Area Rent Ordinances

San Francisco, Oakland and Berkeley have rent ordinances that protect tenants from illegal rent increases and wrongful evictions. A landlord cannot simply change the locks on you, even if you have not paid rent. The landlord must go through the eviction process, properly serve you a notice (three-day notice), and then file an unlawful detainer lawsuit. You cannot be forced out of your home unless there is a valid court judgment against you. If you have been subject to an illegal lock-out, call an experienced Bay Area tenant’s attorney at Bracamontes & Vlasak immediately.

Rent Control

In rent controlled jurisdictions, landlords may only raise the rent the percentage allowed by the local rent board for that year. The San Francisco Rent Board has set the allowable rent increase for March 1, 2017 to February 28, 2018, at 2.2% percent.

If your landlord has raised your rent beyond the allowable increase in a rent-controlled unit, your landlord may have violated the rent ordinance and you should consult a tenant’s lawyer to discuss your rights.

Wrongful Eviction Lawsuits

Under the San Francisco Rent Ordinance, a tenant may be entitled to treble damages (triple the amount of actual damages), plus attorney’s fees and costs, if the tenant can prove a rent ordinance violation in a matter involving a rent-controlled apartment. Under the Rent Ordinance, a tenant may only be evicted for “just cause.” You may have grounds for a wrongful eviction lawsuit if your landlord has:

  • Attempted to evict you for an unlawful, pretextual reason not falling within one of the “just cause” grounds for eviction under the Rent Ordinance;
  • Engaged in a pattern of harassment designed to make you move out, such as repeated requests or threats to vacate, invasions of privacy, unwarranted late charges, creating or failing to abate nuisances, and so on;
  • Failed to ensure habitability or make necessary repairs in an effort to force you out of the rent-controlled unit;
  • Rented you an illegal unit and is now forcing you out;
  • Illegally entered your unit and recovered possession.

If you have been subjected to wrongful eviction or attempted wrongful eviction by the owner or management of your rent-controlled apartment, call a Bay Area tenant’s lawyer at Bracamontes & Vlasak, P.C., today at 415.835.6777 for a free consultation. You can also reach us by completing our online contact form.

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