COVID-19 Court Information

Unlawful Detainer/ Evictions

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
The Monterey Superior Court is in the process of updating our FAQ’s in light of recent Federal and State changes to the law.
The Emergency California Rules on Evictions, Foreclosures enacted by the Judicial Council of California (JCC) on April 1, 2020 expired at midnight on September 1, 2020. Please see updated information below.

Q-1: Are all unlawful detainer (eviction) cases stopped as a result of Covid-19 emergency orders?

  • A: Most, but not all, will be paused or suspended.
    1. The California legislature passed the “Tenant, Homeowner, and Small Landlord Relief and Stabilization Act of 2020“ AB3088. (California Assembly Bill 3088)
      • Missed payment(s) between March 1, 2020 and August 31, 2020: Landlords may not seek eviction for payments missed due to Covid-19 factors.
      • Missed payment(s) between September 1, 2020 and January 31, 2021: Landlord may seek eviction. However, the tenant may provide a written declaration under penalty of perjury to the landlord that the missed payment were due to Covid-19 financial distress. If that declaration is made the landlord must allow until January 31, 2021 for the tenant to make a 25% payment of the debt owed. Landlord may seek eviction if that payment is not made.
      • Tenants are entitled to a 15-day notice to pay or quit for rent due between March 1, 2020 and January 31, 2021. The 15 day notice period does not include holidays or weekends.
      • Disputes between landlords and tenants regarding unpaid rent for the time period between March 1, 2020, and January 31, 2021 may be litigated in small claims court. The small claims action may be filed starting March 1, 2021.
      • For a more thorough explanation of AB3088 and current landlord/tenant law please click the following link. https://landlordtenant.dre.ca.gov/
    2. United States Center for Disease Control Order on evictions: (US CDC Eviction Order)
      • The Federal CDC order prohibits landlords for evicting tenants from residential property due to non-payment of rent before December 31, 2020. The tenant must provide a required written declaration under penalty of perjury to the landlord. Please see attachment portion of the CDC order (US CDC Eviction Order) for an example of the required written declaration. The missed payments are still owed to the landlord and due on January 31, 2020.

Q-2: IF AN EVICTION IS PAUSED BY THESE TEMPORARY ORDERS, DOES THAT MEAN THAT THE TENANT DOES NOT HAVE TO PAY ANY RENT FOR THE PERIOD THAT THE EVICTION WAS SUSPENDED?

  • A: No. Nothing in the orders relieves a tenant from the obligation or liability to pay rent.

Q-3: HOW CAN I FILE PAPERS WITH THE COURT?

  • A: You can file your papers electronically (online) or by depositing the documents at the drop box outside any courthouse. If you need to file an Answer (or response) to an Unlawful Detainer Complaint, you can use the Guide and File system found under the Self-Help tab and accessed by this link. You may also contact the Self-Help Center for information at (831)-647-5800 X 3005 or by email at selfhelpcenter@monterey.courts.ca.gov.

Q-4: IF THE COURT HAS ALREADY ISSUED AN ORDER EVICTING A TENANT (WRIT of POSSESSION), CAN AN ORDER FOR STAY OF EVICTION BE OBTAINED?

  • A: A stay may be requested electronically (online). A judge will review the request.
  • A stay request, may also be submitted to the Courthouse at 1200 Aguajito Rd., Monterey, CA 93940 or the drop box at any location. You may request the forms in person if you are not able to access them online. Drop box and US Mail are currently being processed next day, not same day. (Note: use of the Drop Box locations at Salinas and Marina locations may add one additional day to court processing and review.)
  • A Request for Stay is an extraordinary remedy and must be submitted AS SOON AS POSSIBLE after a residence is posted by the Monterey County Sheriff’s Office. Please allow at least 48 hours for the processing of any request by the Court.
  • New orders and rules are occurring frequently. For information you may also contact the Self-Help Center at (831)-647-5800 X 3005 or by email at selfhelpcenter@monterey.courts.ca.gov.

Q-5: Can an eviction case still be filed and litigated if it is unrelated to missed rent payments and/or Covid-19 factors?