This new law adds, among other things, a definition of “application fee.” Application fees are now capped at the fee at $50, and provides that such fee is nonrefundable. The bill also defines “written notice” as notice, including any representation of words, letters, symbols, numbers, or figures, whether (i) printed in or inscribed on a tangible medium or (ii) stored in an electronic form or other medium, retrievable in a perceivable form, and regardless of whether an electronic signature is affixed. In other words, landlords and tenants can now give legal notice via email, Facebook or other electronic media, even without an electronic signature.
In cases where a tenant pays rent with a bad check, the bill also allows a landlord to seek an award of costs or attorney fees or the lesser of $250 or three times the amount of the bad check, draft or order as part of the damages requested on an unlawful detainer action, provided the landlord has given notice. The bill allows such notice to be included in the five-day termination notice at the option of the landlord. The bill contains specific provisions if the dwelling unit is a public housing unit or other housing unit subject to regulation by the Department of Housing and Urban Development.
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