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Daniel J. Bramzon, State Bar No. 214324 R. Paul Katrinak, State Bar No. 164057

BASTA, Inc.1
2500 Wilshire Blvd., Suite 1111

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Los Angeles, California 90057 Telephone: (213) 736-5050 Facsimile: (213) 736-5055
Attorneys for Plaintiffs

iOS ANGELES SUPERIOR COURT

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MAY.1 1 2011

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JahnAXlarku, j-^c^uuve Officer/Clerk

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SUPERIOR COURT OF THE STATE OF CALIFORNIA FOR THE COUNTY OF LOS ANGELES - CENTRAL DISTRICT

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SERGIO GONZALEZ, an individual,


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and ALL OTHERS SIMILARLY

LASCCaseN|C4 6l4 04
CLASS ACTION

SITUATED,
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Plaintiffs,
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COMPLAINT FOR:

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JP MORGAN CHASE BANK, NATIONAL ASSOCIATION, and DOES 1 through 10,000,


Defendants.

1.
2.

FAILURE TO PAY RELOCATION;


VIOLATION OF BUSINESS AND

PROFESSIONS CODE, 17200; AND


3. NEGLIGENCE

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[JURY TRIAL DEMANDED]

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Plaintiff, on behalf of himself and all others similarly situated (collectively, "Tenants" or 'Plaintiffs"), alleges as follows:
NATURE OF THE A<ITTON
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This case arises from a clash between the rent control laws established to protect

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tenants in the City of Los Angeles and Defendant JP Morgan Chase Bank, National AssgciatroijTsS .t S g "* (hereinafter "JP Morgan Chase Bank") "evict and sell" business model being applied to its? "

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foreclosed properties. Incredibly, every bank that obtains rental property through foreclosure -o
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BASTA, Inc., is a California public benefit corporation and federally registered non-profit organization tha^g advocates fortenants' rights and fights to eliminate substandard housing. Q^
COMPLAINT

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employs the same illegal tactics in violation of the Los Angeles Rent Stabilization Ordinance ("LARSO") as set forth in this Complaint and as evidenced in the multiple Complaints against other
banksthat have been concurrently filed with this Complaint.

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2.

JP Morgan Chase Bank's "evict and sell" business model, in summary, goes as

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follows: When JP Morgan Chase Bank becomes the owner of a foreclosed property, JP Morgan
Chase Bank choosesto evict whatever tenantsreside at the property in order to enhance the

property's sale prospects. JP Morgan Chase Bank has no intent in becoming a landlord ofthe
property or to comply with the law as it concerns the innocent tenants residing on the property.
3. In furtherance of JP Morgan Chase Bank's scheme, JP Morgan Chase Bank uses

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realtors to sell the properties and "handle" the tenants prior to eviction. The realtors only get paid if the property is sold, so the realtors do everything possible to force the tenants offthe property. They
have no incentive or desire to comply with LARSO and help the respective foreclosing bank manage
the rental property as a landlord.

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4.

When JP Morgan Chase Bank cannot force tenants to vacate properties by deception

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and intimidation, JP Morgan Chase Bank resorts to high volume, "eviction mill" attorneys to handle

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the preparation and service of eviction notices and the filing of Unlawful Detainer complaints. The
attorneys' job is not difficult and is to illegally force the tenant off the property in violation of
LARSO by serving a notice to quit, wait the notice period (whether 30, 60, or 90 days), and then file
a Judicial Council form unlawful detainer lawsuit. Under general State law, no reason is required

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for an eviction as long as the bank provides the proper notice period. As far as JP Morgan Chase
Bank is concerned, the "evict and sell" business model is efficient, quick, and cheap.

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The "evict and sell" business model, though, is not legal in the City of Los Angeles,

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where an entire body of rent control laws protecting tenants - LARSO, protects tenants and
promotes stable communities. Evictions must be supported by "good cause," rather than at the
owner's whim. Moreover, landlords are required to pay tenants fixed relocation assistance when

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they intend on taking the rental unit off the market, which is the intent of all the banks, including JP
Morgan Chase Bank, when foreclosing upon the subject properties, especially when the tenant
resides in an "illegal unit."
COMPLAINT

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Previously, LARSO applied only to multi-family dwellings, but in 2008, in the face

2 | ofthis continuing foreclosure crisis impacting innocent tenants, the Los Angeles City Council 3 | expanded the applicability of the "good cause" eviction requirements to basically all rental

4|properties, including single family homes. LAMC, 49.90, et sea, Abank foreclosure ofa
5 landlord's property is not listed by LARSO as a"good cause" ground for eviction. The City Council
6 attempted to address the problem oftenants being victimized by foreclosing banks by bringing 7 virtually all tenants in Los Angeles within the protections ofLARSO. Notwithstanding the "good

8Icause" eviction requirement ofLARSO or its expansion by the Los Angeles City Council, the banks, 9 Iincluding JP Morgan Chase Bank, have continued business as usual. The Defendants continue

10 1applying the "evict and sell" business model while ignoring the tenant protections under the City of
11 | Los Angeles' rent control laws.
12 7. Many ofthese tenants that are being subjected to JP Morgan Chase Bank's "evict and
13 sell" model are the poorest ofthe poor and live in intolerable conditions. Also, they do not know
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14 their rights or cannot defend themselves against these multi-billion dollar institutions bent on
15 throwing them out of their homes.

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8.

When the banks, including JP Morgan Chase Bank, become the landlords, they

17 continue to further neglect the tenants residing on their properties in order to pursue their "evict and
18 sell" business model. The banks never intended to be a landlord and the bank does become a

19 Ilandlord through aforeclosure, the banks want to rid themselves of the obligation as soon as

20 1possible. However, in order to facilitate the sale ofthe property, the property must be empty ofthe
21 rent controlled tenants that this lawsuit is indeed to protect. The banks employ various illegal means

22 Ito force the tenants from their homes. Some ofthe illegal tactics employed by banks including

23 Ipeppering the tenants with illegal notices, threatening the tenants to force them from their homes,
24 threatening to pursue eviction actions inorder to force tenants from their homes and employing
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eviction actions in violation of LARSO to evict tenants from theirhomes. To further expedite the

26 vacating ofthe units, JP Morgan Chase Bank generally refuses to undertake the necessary repairs or
27 H cuts the tenant's utilities.
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COMPLAINT

9.

Within the broader group ofLos Angeles tenants falling victim to the JP Morgan

Chase Bank's "evict and sell" model, there is asubset ofthe poorest, often minority residents ofLos

Angeles living in basements, attics, garages, storage rooms, in corners ofahouse that have been
haphazardly separated by drywall - all ofwhich have been illegally converted into living quarters
with varied levels of bathroom, kitchen, and entrance. These converted spaces share the same basis

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ofillegality in that these now-dwelling units have been constructed without permits, without the watchful eye oflocal regulatory agencies, and not in conformity with the laws intended to protect the illegal unit's human habitants. Thus, these illegal units have not been granted a Certificate of
Occupancy issued by the City ofLos Angeles Department of Building and Safety ("LADBS").
10. Because of the inherent danger of these illegal units, the City of Los Angeles deems

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them "unapproved" for occupancy. Inother words, their existence for the purpose of human

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habitation is illegal. In such situations, landlords are required to either (a) sufficiently remediate the
illegal unit so as to obtain a Certificate of Occupancy and make it habitable, which the banks
steadfastly refuse to do, or (b) relocate the tenant and pay the tenant a relocation fee fixed by

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LARSO.

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11.

Notwithstanding JP Morgan Chase Bank's legal obligations as landlords under rent

control, JP Morgan Chase Bank has instead chosen to steadfastly continue with its "evict and sell" model without paying the tenants relocation fees as mandated by LARSO. In addition, in order to
force the tenants from their homes, the banks, including JP Morgan Chase Bank, "abandon" the

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tenants and all responsibility for the property. The banks, including JP Morgan Chase Bank, neither

repair dilapidations or pay utilities thereby leaving the tenants to fend for themselves and live in
inhumane conditions.

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12.

The tenants being subjected to the banks' blatant LARSO violations are, as one may

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guess, the poorest ofthe poor and most disenfranchised residents ofthe community - persons who
are in most need of protection. Banks, such as JP Morgan Chase Bank, however, treat these tenants that are protected by LARSO like any other normal foreclosure and apply their "evict and sell"
business model as usual, which they cannot do. This lawsuit hopes to bring JP Morgan Chase Bank
into compliance with its legal obligations under LARSO.
COMPLAINT

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JURISDICTION

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The Court has jurisdiction of this matter as the property at issue iswithin the City of

Los Angeles, State ofCalifornia. In addition, JP Morgan Chase Bank waived any right toremove
this action to Federal Court, in among other ways, by proceeding with multiple Unlawful Detainer actions in StateCourt against members ofthe class, including Plaintiffherein.
THE PARTIES

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A.

Plaintiffs and the Class Members' Standing

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The Plaintiffand every member ofthe classhas standing because they livein a rental

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unit subject to LARSO that was obtained by JP Morgan Chase Bank through foreclosure. JP

Morgan Chase Bank is violating its legal obligations as a landlord under LARSO. JP Morgan Chase
Bank has attempted and is attempting to evict tenants based solelyon obtaining the property through foreclosure (e.g., 3/60/90 day notices to quit), which is not a legal basis to evict tenants in Los
Angeles. Finally, if the banks, includingJP Bank, desire to evict the tenants for purposes of taking
the rental units off the market, which appears to be the bank's motivation, then the banks are

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required to pay the tenants relocation under LARSO, which the banks also refuse to do.
15. Among other things, the Court should enjoin JP Morgan Chase Bank from its

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continuing pattern and practice of violating LARSO, by among other things, (a) evicting tenants
based solely on the fact that JP Morgan Chase Bank obtained possession ofthe property through foreclosure, (b) giving improper notices to "trick" the tenants into vacating the property in violation
of LARSO, (c) failing to pay relocation to tenants entitled to relocation, (d) filing and pursuing

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Unlawful Detainer actions without paying relocation, (e) illegally intimidating and harassing tenants,
and (f) failing to comply with local laws and ordinances.

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16.

Plaintiffs' proposed injunction will force JP Morgan Chase Bank to comply with its

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legal obligations under LARSO.


B. Plaintiff Class Representative

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17.

Sergio Gonzalez resides at 3608 Vi Adair Street, Los Angeles, CA 90011. Sergio

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Gonzalez is a male tenant living in a dwelling unit that is owned, managed, and/or otherwise
administered or operated by Defendant JP Morgan Chase Bank in the City of Los Angeles. Plaintiff
COMPLAINT

is aresident ofthe City and County ofLos Angeles. The residence Sergio Gonzalez lives in was
constructed before October 1,1978. Therefore, the unit is subject to LARSO.

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Sergio Gonzalez's unit is also an illegal unit that has been cited by the City ofLos

Angeles as an illegal unit. The illegal units involved in this matter concern dwelling units that are
unapproved for occupancy. Basically, the issue is one ofwhat the current use ofa multi-family
dwelling structure is and what the authorized use is. Many ofthe units involved concern structures
thatwere builtbefore Certificates of Occupancy were required; however, there are other documents

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maintained by the City, which are a matter ofpublic record and which establish what the authorized
useofthe dwelling structure is and how many dwelling units are authorized to be within the
structure.

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Among other documents, the permits associated with a structure would establish

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what the authorized use of a structure is. There were building permits required, and saved by the

City, going back decades before the Certificates of Occupancy were required. These old building permits describe the number of dwelling units authorized in a structure and on a particular piece of
property. In addition, they also reveal when additional dwelling units are added and authorized and
which are not.

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The documentation maintained by the City, Certificatesof Occupancy and building

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permits will establish the number of dwelling units authorized on a particularproperty.


Additionally, JP Morgan Chase Bank's own records would establish the number dwelling units on

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procedure employed by all Banks universally is to have a realtor inspect the Property being foreclosed upon both pre- and post-foreclosure. The realtor then reports back to the Bank. This information is then entered in the Bank's computer system. Also, sometimes the Banks send
"Surveys" or "Questionnaires" to the tenants on the Property owned by the Bank and many tenants

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fill out the surveys and return them to the Banks and the information is imputed into the Bank's
computer system. Once a Bank determines that there are tenants living on a Property obtained by
the Bank, the Bank then refers the Property to an eviction attorney to remove the tenants from the
Property.
COMPLAINT

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C.

Defendant Financial Institution

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Defendant JP Morgan Chase Bank National Trust Company ("JP Morgan Chase

Bank") is a National Banking Association, that, based upon information and belief, conducts
substantial business in the Cityand County of Los Angeles, including purchasing, owning,

managing, and/or otherwise administering or operating real property in the City of Los Angeles. JP
Morgan Chase Bank, through the foreclosure , has become the ownerand, in turn, the landlord of
PlaintiffSergio Gonzalez, as well as all class members who are tenants living in rent controlled
dwelling units and "illegal units" owned and/or managed by JP Morgan Chase Bank. JP Morgan Chase Bank is legally authorized to act, and required to act, as the landlord ofthe property. JP Morgan Chase Bank is responsible for repairs and maintenance ofthe property and is the entity
named as the Plaintiff in legal proceedings as the property owner with the right to evict a given
tenant.

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22.

The true names and capacities of Defendants sued as Does 1 through 1000 are

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unknown to the Plaintiffs at this time. Plaintiffs therefore sue said Defendants by such fictitious names. Plaintiffs will amend this action to allege the true names and capacities of Does 1 through
10,000 when ascertained. Nevertheless, the Plaintiffs are informed and believe, and based thereon

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allege, that each ofthe Doe Defendants, jointly and severally, are in some manner responsible for the wrongdoing and damages alleged herein. Defendants JP Morgan Chase Bank and Does 1 through 10,000 will sometimes be collectively referred to herein as. "JP Morgan Chase Bank" or
"Defendants."

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Plaintiffs are informed and believe, and based thereon allege, that each Defendant

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was the employee, agent, servant, partner, beneficiary, executor, fictitious business name,
administrator, member, and/or joint venturer of each ofthe remaining Defendants and was acting

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within the scope of said employment, agency, trust relationship, beneficiary status, service,
partnership, membership, fictitious business name, and/or joint venture. Plaintiffs are further

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informed and believe that each act on the part of each defendant was substantially ratified by each of
the remaining Defendants.

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COMPLAINT

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24.

JP Morgan Chase Bank employs the same tactics and strategies employed by all the

Banks concerning attempting to remove tenants from rent controlled properties. Counsel for the
Plaintiffs have been involved in hundreds of Unlawful Detainer actions and every single financial
institution employs the same tactics in removing tenants.

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25.

The first step in the process isthat the Bank sends a computer notification to a realtor

assigning the foreclosed property to the realtor. Many Banks use the same nationwide realtors, such
asColdwell Banker. This notice is generated by a shared computer system. Some ofthe Banks'

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foreclosure programs and computer systems have been set up by a nationwide foreclosure processing

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company and foreclosure company called First Services Corporation, with most ofits operations and
related entitiesout of Dallas, Texas. There are no oral communications, just electronic
communications.

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The next step in the process isthat it isthe policy ofevery Bank that the realtor visit

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the property and determine ifthe property isoccupied. Normally, there isno contact with the
occupants by the realtor, justa determination is to be made that the property is occupied.
27. The realtor is then required to report backto the Bank, by entering comments into the

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shared computer system that the property isoccupied. Ifthe realtor does obtain information ofthe
occupants ofthe property, then that information is also entered into the shared computer system to
the Bank. No communications are oral. All communications are by e-mail or by way of typing

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comments into a shared computer system. Substantial testimony has been provided of many realtors
and not one has ever testified about speaking to a live person at any Bank.

28.

Afterthe realtor reports backto the Bank that the property is occupied, one of a

handful of eviction firms are assigned to remove the tenants from the property. The first

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communication that most tenants receive, if any, is a three-day notice to the former owner, who does
not reside on the property.

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There are no communications with the tenants about their tenancies, if any

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maintenance is needed, or to collect the rent. In fact, as the realtor only gets paid if the propertyis
sold, the realtors normally refuse to accept any rent and employ various tactics to remove the tenants

from the property. Someof those tactics include, but are not limited to, refusing to perform any
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COMPLAINT

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maintenance, refusing to pay the utilities that the former owner was paying which was included in
rent.

30.

Subsequent to the filing of this class action, last year, a new entity appeared

concerning tenants in the City ofLos Angeles called Tenant Access. Another shell company ofFirst
Services Corporation out of Dallas, Texas. This company allegedly provides services to tenants on

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properties concerning maintenance issues in Los Angeles out of Dallas, Texas. Thecompany

appears to be yet another subterfuge by the Banks to feign compliance with local laws and
ordinances while attempting to remove tenants from properties so that theycan be sold.
31. All ofthe Banks, including JP Morgan Chase Bank, employ the same realtors, same

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computer programs, same policies and procedures concerning attempting to remove tenants from properties. They also employ the same handful of eviction firms as well. Thecoordination of
tactics occurs due to the fact that all the Banks employ the same entities for purposes of disposing of

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tenants on properties, so the properties can be sold by the realtors and the realtors can get paid.
FACTUAL BACKGROUND

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32.

Plaintiff Sergio Gonzalez lives at 3608 V* Adair Street, Los Angeles, CA 90011. He

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rented the property from September2008 until today, and paid rent until June 2009. However, the
unit does not have a door covering the front entrance to the residence, and is currently covered by a
sheet of plastic. The unit does not have functioning heat or hot water, there are vermin on the

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premises. These conditions continue to today. Sergio Gonzalez lives in a rental unit subject to
LARSO, which has been cited by the City of Los Angeles as an illegal unit.

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33.

On or about April 28,2009, JP Morgan Chase Bank obtained the property where

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Sergio Gonzalez resides through a foreclosure. JP Morgan Chase Bank became Sergio Gonzalez's
landlord. When JP Morgan Chase Bank took over as Sergio Gonzalez's landlord, JP Morgan Chase
Bank ceased maintaining the property.

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34.

JP Morgan Chase Bank began demanding increased rent from Sergio Gonzalez

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starting June 15, 2009. Defendant refused to pay this increased rent. JP Morgan Chase Bank was

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not, and is not, legally entitled to collect rent from Sergio Gonzalez, because Sergio Gonzalez lives
in an illegal unit.
COMPLAINT

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35.

Shortly afterward, JP Morgan Chase Bank initiated Unlawful Detainer proceedings to

remove Sergio Gonzalez from his home. Attached hereto as Exhibit "A" isa true and correct copy
of JP Morgan Chase Bank National Association v. Mr. Gonzalez et. al LASC Case No. 09U09308

Complaint filed on July 2,2009, against Sergio Gonzalez.

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JP Morgan Chase Bank did not have a permitted cause for eviction under LAMC.

Attached hereto as Exhibit "B" is a true and correct copy of Sergio Gonzalez's Answer in JP
Morgan Chase Bank National Association v. Mr. Gonzalez et. al., LASC Case No. 09U09308 filed
on July 9,2009.

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37.

Throughout the entire time since JP Morgan Chase Bank took over as the landlord of

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Sergio Gonzalez, JP Morgan Chase Bank has repeatedly continued to harass and intimidate Sergio
Gonzalez to vacate his home. JP Morgan Chase Bank has subjected Sergio Gonzalez and his family
to notices which made no sense or had no legal basis, threats,-as opposed to either bringing his

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"illegal unit" to Code or paying Sergio Gonzalez to relocate from his home as required by LARSO.
38. The conduct of JP Morgan Chase Bank toward Sergio Gonzalez is typical ofthe

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conduct of JP Morgan Chase Bank toward tenants in properties subject to LARSO throughout Los
Angeles.
CLASS ACTION ALLEGATIONS

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A.

Class Allegations for the Class Generally

39.

Pursuant to Section 382 ofthe Code of Civil Procedure, Plaintiff brings this action on

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behalf of himself and a similarly situated class defined as: any person who is, or within the last

three years has been, a tenant in any dwelling unit or residential dwelling structure in the City
of Los Angeles that is/was owned, managed, or otherwise administered or operated by the
Defendants (the "Class"). Excluded from the Class are the Defendants and their officers, affiliates, directors, members, employees, shareholders, independent contractors, onsite managers and

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supervisors, offsite managers and supervisors, real estate agents and brokers, other agents however
denominated, and the immediate family members of any ofthe above.

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40.

The members of the Class are sufficiently numerous that joinder of all members

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would be unfeasible and not practicable. Although the Plaintiffs are presently unaware ofthe exact
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COMPLAINT

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number of Class members, the Defendants, based on infonnation and belief, either own, manage, or

otherwise administer oroperate at least hundreds of relevant foreclosed properties inthe City of Los

Angeles. Based onlocal demographics and residential statistics, each foreclosed property shelters,
on average, approximately four persons. Thus, the Class contains hundreds, if not thousands, of
people. 41. The Class is ascertainable and shares a well-defined community of interest in

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questions of law and fact. Defendants infringed upon and violated, in similar fashion, the rights of
each Class member based upon Defendants' uniform conduct in the regularly practiced, unfair, and
unlawful circumvention ofthe rights intended to protect tenants underLARSO. Such questions of
law and fact include, but are not limited to:

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(a)

Whether Defendants own, manage, or otherwise administer or operate

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dwelling units or residential dwelling structures on foreclosed properties rented to tenants


who are protected by LARSO;

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(b)

Whether Defendants have, as policy and regular operating procedure,

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undertaken unfair and unlawful business practices in circumventing the rights granted to
tenants under LARSO;

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(c)

Whether Defendants have, as policy and regular operating procedure,

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generally abused the judicial process to vacate foreclosed properties and rid themselves of tenants protected by LARSO (without proper payment of relocation fees); (d) Whether Defendants have, as policy and regular operating procedure,

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undertaken illicit tactics and business practices for the purpose of, in part, facilitating the sale

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ofthe foreclosed properties and selling the rent-controlled, foreclosed properties at a higher

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sale price;2 and


(e) Whether Defendants' conduct was undertaken intentionally or negligently.

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The Plaintiff suffered from the same general illicit tactics and "evict and sell" business model used

by Defendants to circumvent the same rights applicable to the entire Class.


2 Plaintiff has divided the broader victimized Class into Subclasses that correlate with the most common means used by Defendants to circumvent LARSO and avoid their obligation to pay required relocation fees to the displaced tenants. The relocation fees are required and fixed by municipal ordinance.
COMPLAINT

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42.

Theclaims of the named Plaintiff are typical of the claims of all members ofthe

Class becausethe named Plaintiff is a tenant in a dwelling unit or residential dwelling structure in

the City of Los Angeles that is owned, managed, or otherwise administered or operated by the
Defendants and which was obtained by Defendants through a foreclosure. The Plaintiffhas been

victimized by the same illegal and unfair business practices uniformly applied by Defendants

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throughout Los Angeles. In addition, thePlaintiff resides in a dwelling unit or residential dwelling
structure that does not havea Certificate of Occupancy (commonly known as an "illegal unit").

43.

Plaintiff, as representative party, will fairly and adequately protect the interests of the

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Class byvigorously pursuing the lawsuit through the Plaintiff's attorneys who are sufficiently skilled
and experienced. The individually named Plaintiff has no interest antagonistic to those interests of
other Class members.

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44.

Defendants have acted or refused to act on grounds that apply generally to the Class

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by systematically and as a business practice refusing to comply with local ordinances, such as
LARSO. More specifically, Defendants have abused process to vacate tenants protected by LARSO
in order to remove these dwelling units from the rental market (in order to enhance a foreclosed

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property's marketability and value), but Defendants have clone so without first paying the displaced
tenants the relocation fees as required and fixed by LARSO. The Defendants' common practice of ignoring local housing ordinances designed to ensure the safety ofthe general public applies, by definition, to all members ofthe Class. This common practice of ignoring local housing ordinances is appropriate for injunctive and declaratory relief that, among other things, prohibits the Defendants

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from removing members ofthe Class from their homes altogether without a "good cause" as
required by LARSO, or at a minimum, without paying relocation benefits to the displaced tenants as
fixed by LARSO.

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45.

Common questions of law and fact applicable to the Class predominate over

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questions affecting only individual Class members. Those questions include, but are not limited to:
(a) Whether Defendants own, manage, or otherwise administer or operate

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dwelling units or residential dwelling structures on foreclosed properties rented to tenants


who are protected by LARSO;
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COMPLAINT

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(b)

Whether Defendants have, as policy and regular operating procedure,

undertaken unfair and unlawful business practices in circumventing the rights granted to
tenants under LARSO;

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(c)

Whether Defendants have, as policy and regular operating procedure,

generally abused the judicial process to vacate foreclosed properties and rid themselves of
tenants protected by LARSO (without proper payment of relocation fees); (d) Whether Defendants have, as policy and regular operating procedure,

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undertaken illicit tactics and business practices for the purpose of, in part, facilitating
the sale ofthe foreclosed properties and selling the rent-controlled, foreclosed properties at a higher sale price; and (e) Whether, as a common and regular practice, Defendants have, through illicit

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means (including Unlawful Detainer actions based on unauthorized and invalid notices),

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generally avoided their obligation to pay relocation, fees to displaced tenants as required by
LARSO;

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(f)
(g)

Whether Defendants' conduct was undertaken intentionally or negligently;


Whether Defendants should cease prosecuting all Unlawful Detainer actions

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in the City of Los Angeles pending the outcome of this litigation so as to prevent the piecemeal litigationcurrently happening in the form of Unlawful Detainer actions that allow the Defendants to take advantage of those members ofthe Class who cannot individually
obtain counsel; and

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(h)

Whether a Special Master should be appointed to approve - prior to service

thereof- any notices that Defendants wish to serveon a tenant in the City of Los Angeles.
46. This case can and should be concentrated in a single forum because all ofthe claims

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arise from the laws of a single municipality, the City of Los Angeles. Further, the Federal court has
already issued instructions to file this action in State court.

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47.

There are no difficulties that will arise in managing this case as a class action. Notice

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to membersofthe Class can be provided through Defendants' records, distributionof notices posted

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COMPLAINT

at the properties that the Defendants own, manage, or otherwise administer or operate, and by
targeted publication (the cost of which should be properly imposed on Defendants).
48. A class action is superior to other available methods for the fair and efficient

adjudication of this controversy for at least the following reasons: (a) Based upon information and belief, the case will require substantial

management and oversight by the Court due to the potential for an excessively large number
of Class members;

(b)

Based upon information and belief, the case will require substantial

management and ongoing oversight by the Court due to the necessary injunctive relief
requested by the Plaintiffs related to Defendants' illegal business practices; (c) Based upon information and belief, the case will require substantial

10
II

12

management and oversight by the Court due to a multiplicity of inter-connected, related, and
affiliated entities that may be involved in the wrongs alleged, which the Defendants use as

13
< 3-

14

"fronts" and cover in an effort to avoid liability; (d) Based upon information and belief, this action will promote an orderly and

15

16

expeditious administration and adjudication ofthe claims herein, foster economies of time,

17

effort, and resources, and ensure uniformity of decisions, especially with respect to
Defendants' uniform business practices that violate local laws;
(e) Based upon information and belief, the equitable relief sought should be

18

19

20
21

imposed on the Defendants consistently, and a class action is superior to individual actions because a series of individual lawsuits would risk compelling the Defendants to meet
inconsistent standards of conduct;

22
23
24

(f)

Based upon information and belief, handling this case as a class action will

potentially alleviate the heavy burden currently being imposed on the judicial districts where

25

City of Los Angeles Unlawful Detainers are being filed that should never have been filed in the first place except for Defendants' illicit business practices; and
(g) Based upon information and belief, the unnamed members ofthe Class are

26
S

27

28

frightened of retribution from the Defendantsfor invoking their rights to seek the judicial
14
COMPLAINT

1
2

reliefcontained herein, so proceeding in unity as a group will alleviate such fears and
concerns as well as protect the rights of those victimized Class members who are not
individually named herein.
B. Class Allegations for the Notice to Quit Subclass

49.

The Class includes a subclass defined as: any Class member who has received an

6
7

illegal or unauthorized Notice to Quit such as a 3/60/90-day notice to quit/vacate (the "Notice to
Quit Subclass").

50.

The number of Class members within the Notice to Quit Subclass are sufficiently

numerous that joinder of all members would be unfeasible and not practicable. Although the
Plaintiffs are presently unaware ofthe exact number of Subclass members, the Defendants, based on
information and belief, either own, manage, or otherwise administer or operate at least hundreds of

10
II

12
r-

relevant foreclosed properties in the City of LosAngeles where a Notice to Quithas been issued that
was not authorized by statute or ordinance. Based on local demographics and residential statistics,
each relevant property provides shelter to at least an estimated four persons. Thus, the Notice to

13

< *i
S *

15
16
17

Quit Subclass contains hundreds, if not thousands, of people. 51. The Subclass is ascertainable and shares a well-defined community of interest in

questions of law and fact, because Defendants infringed and violated, in similar fashion, the rights of
each Subclass member based upon Defendants' uniform conduct in the regularly practiced, unfair, and unlawful circumvention ofthe rights intended to protect tenants under LARSO. Such questions
of law and fact include but are not limited to:

18

19
20

21

(a)

Whether Defendants own, manage, or otherwise administer or operate

22

dwelling units or residential dwelling structures on foreclosed properties that are being rented to tenants protected by LARSO;

23

24

(b)

Whether Defendants, as a common practice and regular policy, issued notices

25

to tenants commanding them to "quit" and vacate their homes when such notices were per se not supported by the "good cause" eviction requirements of LARSO (e.g., 3/60/90-day
notices to quit);

\
H

26

H \

27

28

(c)

Whether Defendants, as a common practice and regular policy, issued such


15
COMPLAINT

1
2 3
4

per se unauthorized Notices to Quit for purposes ofvacating the tenants from their rentcontrolled homes in order to permanently remove the property from the rental market,

thereby facilitating the sale ofthe foreclosed properties and selling such properties ata
higher sale price;

5 6
7 8

(d)

Whether Defendants, as a common practice and regular policy, failed to pay

relocation fees to the displaced tenants in the amounts fixed byLARSO, notwithstanding
Defendants' demand that the tenants vacate the foreclosed properties (i.e., through the

Notices to Quit) with the intent of permanently removing the foreclosed properties from the
rental market to improve the properties' marketability and sale price;

9 10
11
12

(e)

Whether Defendants, as a common practice and regular policy, abused

process by issuing theseper se unauthorized Notices to Quit upon tenants who were

otherwise protected by LARSO's "good cause"eviction requirements and then proceeding to


file Unlawful Detainer actions based upon these unauthorized Notices to Quit (e.g., 3/60/90day notices to quit); and

13
< g.
i- *:
ai

14

< Z3
as s

15
16

(f)

Whether Defendants' conduct was undertaken intentionally or negligently.

The Plaintiff suffered from the same general illicit tactics and "evict and sell" business model used
by Defendants to circumvent the same rights applicable to the entire Subclass. 52. The claims ofthe named Plaintiff are typical ofthe claims of all members ofthe

17

18

19

Subclass because the named Plaintiff is a tenant in a dwelling unit or residential dwelling structure

20
21

in the City of Los Angeles that is owned, managed, or otherwise administered or operated by
Defendants and obtained by Defendants through a foreclosure. The Plaintiff has been victimized by

22

Defendants' illegal and unfair business practices uniformly practiced by Defendants throughout Los

23 24
25
01

Angeles. In addition, the Plaintiff lives in a rent-controlled property but nevertheless received a
Notice to Quit from Defendants commanding Plaintiff to vacate the property without a "good cause"
as required by LARSO.

\
H

26

53.

Plaintiff, as representative party, will fairly and adequately protect the interests ofthe

\
K?
H

27

Notice to Quit Subclass by vigorously pursuing the lawsuit through the Plaintiff's attorneys, who are

28

16
COMPLAINT

1
2

Isufficiently skilled and experienced. The individually named Plaintiffhas no interest antagonistic to
those interests of other Subclass members.

54.

Defendants have acted or refused to act on grounds that apply generallyto the

Subclass by systematically and as a business practice refusing to generally comply with local
ordinances, such as LARSO. More specifically, Defendants have abused process to vacate rent-

5 6
7

controlled tenants from foreclosed properties in order to remove dwelling units from the rental

market but without first paying the displaced tenants relocation fees as required and fixed by
LARSO. The Defendants' common practice of ignoring local housing ordinances designed to

ensure the safety ofthe general public applies, by definition, to all members ofthe Subclass. This common practice of ignoring local housing ordinances is appropriate for injunctive and declaratory
reliefthat, among other things, prohibits the Defendants from removing members ofthe Subclass
from their rent-controlled homes without paying relocation benefits as required and fixed by
LARSO.

10
11

12

13
14

55.

The common questions of law and fact as to the Notice to Quit Subclass predominate

<" .?zz
< t -i * J* w v

15

overquestions affecting only individual Subclass members. Thosequestions include, but are not
limited to:

16

17

(a)

Whether Defendantsown, manage, or otherwise administer or operate

18

dwelling units or residential dwelling structures on foreclosed properties that are being
rented to tenants protected by LARSO;

19 20
21

(b)

Whether Defendants, as policy and regular operating procedure, have

undertaken unlawful and unfair business practices intended to circumvent LARSO,

22 23
24

specifically by issuing Notices to Quitcommanding the tenants to "quit" and vacate their
rent controlled homes without a "good cause" as listed in, and required by, LARSO (e.g.,
3/60/90-day notices to quit);

25

(c)

Whether Defendants, as common practice and regular policy, vacated tenants

\
H

s
\

26

from rent controlled properties in order to remove the properties from the rental market to,
in turn, facilitate the sale ofthe rent-controlled investments and increase the sale price;

27
28

(d)

Whether Defendants - when intending to remove a property from the rental


17
COMPLAINT

market for sale purposes - initiated eviction proceedings based onNotices to Quit that were
2 3
4

per se invalid under LARSO rather than pay the tenants the required relocation fees as fixed
by LARSO;

(e)

Whether Defendants' conduct was undertaken intentionally or negligently;

5 6

(f)

Whether Defendants should cease prosecuting all Unlawful Detainer actions

in the Cityof Los Angeles pending the outcome of this litigation so as to prevent the current

piecemeal litigation happening in the form of Unlawful Detainer actions that allow the
Defendants to take advantage of Subclass members who cannot individually obtain counsel;
and

9 10
II

(g)

Whether a Special Master should be appointed to approve - prior to service

thereof- any noticesthat Defendants wish to serve on a tenant in the City of Los Angeles.
56. The extent and nature of any litigation concerning the controversy already begun by

12

13
14

or against Subclass members should not preclude thecertification ofthe Subclass because a certified
Subclass would end the piecemeal litigation in the form of Unlawful Detaineractions that allowthe
Defendants to take advantage of those members ofthe Subclass who cannot individually obtain
counsel.

" 3 -'
<

- ; -

15

16 17
18

57.

There are no difficulties that will arise in managing this case with the proposed

Subclass. Notice to members ofthe Subclass can be provided through Defendants' records, distribution of notices posted at the properties that the Defendants own, manage, or otherwise administer or operate, and by targeted publication (the cost of which should be properly imposed on
Defendants).

19

20
21

22 23
24

58.

A class action, with the proposed Subclass, is superior to other available methods for

the fair and efficient adjudication of this controversy for at least the following reasons:

(a)

Based upon information and belief, the case will require substantial

25

management and oversight by the Court due to the potential for an excessively large number
of Subclass members;

a
26
27

(b)

Based upon information and belief, the case will require substantial

28

18
COMPLAINT

management and ongoing oversight bytheCourt due to the necessary injunctive relief
requested by the Plaintiffs related to Defendants' illegal business practices;
(c) Based upon information and belief, the case will require substantial

2
3
4

management and oversight by the Court due to a multiplicity of inter-connected, related, and
affiliated entities that may be involved in the wrongs alleged, which the Defendants use as
"fronts" and cover in an effort to avoid liability;

5
6
7

(d)

Based upon information and belief, this action will promote an orderly and

8
9 10
II

expeditious administration and adjudication ofthe claims herein, foster economiesof time,
effort, and resources, and ensure uniformity of decisions, especially with respect to Defendants' uniform business practices that violate local laws; (e) Based upon information and belief, the equitable relief sought should be

12
13
< Ii- :

imposed on the Defendants consistently, and a class action, with the proposed Subclass, is superior to individual actions because a series of individual lawsuits would risk compelling
the Defendants to meet inconsistent standards of conduct;

14 15 16
17

CD J

(f)

Based upon information and belief, handling this case as a class action, with

the proposed Subclass, will potentially alleviate the heavy burden being imposed on the judicial districts where City of Los Angeles Unlawful Detainers are being filed that should

18 19 20 21 22 23
24

never have been filed in the first place except for Defendants' illicit business practices; and
(g) Based upon information and belief, the unnamed members ofthe Subclass are

frightened of retribution from the Defendants for invoking their rights to seek the judicial
relief contained herein, so proceeding in unity as a group will alleviate such fears and
concerns as well as protect the rights of those victimized Subclass members not individually
named herein.

C.

Class Allegations for the Non-Payment of Rent Subclass

25
<J1

59.

The Class also includes a subclass defined as: any Class member who has received

26
27

a Notice to Pay Rent or Quit (the "Notice to Pay Subclass").


60. The number of Class members within the Notice to Pay Subclass are sufficiently

^
K

28

numerous that joinder of all members would be unfeasible and not practicable. Although the
19
COMPLAINT

1
2
3

Plaintiffs are presently unaware ofthe exact number ofSubclass members, the Defendants, based on
information and belief, either own, manage, orotherwise administer oroperate at least hundreds of

relevant foreclosed properties in the City ofLos Angeles where a Notice to Pay Rent orQuit has
been issued. Based on local demographics and residential statistics, each relevant property provides shelter to at least an estimated four persons. Thus, the Notice to Pay Subclass contains hundreds, if
not thousands, of people.

5
6 7 8 9

61.

The Subclass is ascertainable and shares a well-definedcommunity of interest in

questions oflaw and fact, because Defendants infringed and violated, in similar fashion, the rights of
each Subclass member based upon Defendants' uniform conduct in the regularly practiced, unfair,
and unlawful circumvention ofthe rights intended to protect tenants under LARSO. Such questions
of law and fact include but are not limited to:

10
11

12

(a)

Whether Defendants own, manage, or otherwise administer or operate

13
14

dwelling units or residential dwelling structures on foreclosed properties thatare being


rented to tenants protected by LARSO;

< 2 -s .-

15 16
17

(b)

Whether Defendants, as a common practice and regular policy, issued notices

g
<>

?
>
o

to tenants for alleged non-payment of rent as a subterfuge to intimidate tenants into vacating
their rent-controlled properties in order for Defendants to permanently remove the properties

-J

18 19 20
21

from the rental market - without paying relocation fees as required and fixed by LARSO for the purpose of facilitating the sale and increasing the price ofthe foreclosed properties;

(c)

Whether Defendants, as a common practice and regular policy, issued notices

to tenantscommanding them to pay rent or quit, when Defendants did not have any intention
to collect rent and indeed refused to accept rent parents, in order to proceed with

22

23
24

Unlawful Detainer actions and evict tenants without paying relocation fees per LARSO;

(d)

Whether Defendants' conduct was undertaken intentionally or negligently.

25
O

The Plaintiff suffered from the same general illicit tactics and "evict and sell" business model used
by Defendants to circumvent the same rights applicable to the entire Subclass.

\
t-r

26 27
28

1\ K

62.

The claims of the named Plaintiff are typical of the claims of all members of the

Subclass because the named Plaintiff is a tenant in a dwelling unit or residential dwelling structure
20
COMPLAINT

in the City ofLos Angeles that isowned, managed, orotherwise administered or operated by
Defendants and obtained by Defendants through a foreclosure. The Plaintiff has been victimized by

Defendants' illegal and unfair business practices uniformly practiced by Defendants throughout Los

Angeles. In addition, the Defendants refused to accept Plaintiff's rent after issuing aNotice to Pay
Rent orQuit and instead initiated an Unlawful Detainer action against Plaintiff in order to
implement Defendants' "evict and sell" business model.

5
6

63.

Plaintiff, as representative party, will fairly and adequately protect the interests ofthe

Notice to Quit Subclass byvigorously pursuing the lawsuit through the Plaintiff's attorneys, who are sufficiently skilled and experienced. The individually named Plaintiff has no interest antagonistic to
those interests of other Subclass members.

9
10

11

64.

Defendants have acted or refusedto act on grounds that apply generally to the

12

Subclass by systematically and as a business practice refusing to generally comply with local
ordinances, such as LARSO. More specifically, Defendants have abused process to vacate rent-

* 8 1-5 =5 -.s:3
< 5-i155 3
S ^T "* *

13
14

controlled tenants from foreclosed propertiesin order to remove dwelling units from the rental market but without first paying the displacedtenants relocation fees as required and fixed by
LARSO. The Defendants' common practice of ignoring local housing ordinances designed to
ensure the safety ofthe general public applies, by definition, to all members ofthe Subclass. This

15

o S

? <

16
17

18

common practice of ignoring local housing ordinances is expropriate for injunctive and declaratory
relief that, among other things, prohibits the Defendants from removing members ofthe Subclass from their rent-controlled homes without paying relocation benefits as required and fixed by
LARSO.

19

20
21

22

65.

The common questions of law and fact as to the Notice to Quit Subclass predominate

23

over questions affecting only individual Subclass members. Those questions include, but are not
limited to:

24
25
(9
Ul

(a)

Whether Defendants own, manage, or otherwise administer or operate

S
\

26
27
28

dwelling units or residential dwelling structures on foreclosed properties that are being
rented to tenants protected by LARSO; (b) Whether Defendants, as a common practice and regular policy, issued notices
21
COMPLAINT

to tenants for alleged non-payment ofrent as a subterfuge to intimidate tenants into vacating
their rent-controlled properties in order for Defendants to permanently remove the properties
from the rental market - without paying relocation fees as required and fixed by LARSO -

for the purpose offacilitating the sale and increasing the price ofthe foreclosed properties;
(c) Whether Defendants, as a common practice and regular policy, issued notices
to tenants for alleged non-payment of rent when Defendants did not have any intention
or a procedural mechanism to collect rents;

(d)

Whether Defendants, as a common practice and regular policy, issued notices

to tenants for alleged non-payment ofrent yet refused to accept rent payments in order to proceed with Unlawful Detainer actions for purposes of, in part, removing the rent
controlled properties from the rental market without paying relocation fees perLARSO;
(e) Whether Defendants, as policy and regular operating procedure, through

10

11

12

13
14
< - 3 .-

illicit tactics and unfair business practices, vacated tenants from rent controlled properties in order to remove the properties from the rental market to, in turn, facilitate the sale ofthe
rent-controlled investments and increase the sale price;

15
16

(f)

Whether Defendants - when intending to remove a property from the rental

17

market for salepurposes - initiated eviction proceedings based on notices of non-payment of


rent when Defendants had no intention or mechanism of collecting the demanded rents (and

18 19
20

indeed often refused such demanded rents) for the purpose of, in part, circumventing the
relocation fees requirement fixed by LARSO;

21
22

(g)
(h)

Whether Defendants' conduct was undertaken intentionally or negligently;


Whether Defendants should cease prosecuting all Unlawful Detainer actions

23

in the Cityof Los Angeles pending the outcomeof this litigation so as to prevent the current
piecemeal litigation happening in the form of Unlawful Detainer actions that allow the
Defendants to take advantage of Subclass members who cannot individually obtain counsel;
and

24

25

26
27

(i)

Whether a Special Mastershould be appointed to approve - prior to service

28

thereof- any notices that Defendants wish to serve on a tenant in the City of Los Angeles
22
COMPLAINT

66.

The extent and nature ofany litigation concerning the controversy already begun by

2
3
4

or against Subclass members should not preclude the certification ofthe Subclass because acertified
Subclass would end the piecemeal litigation in the form ofUnlawful Detainer actions that allow the
Defendants to take advantage ofthose members ofthe Subclass who cannot individually obtain
counsel.

6
7 8 9

67.

There are no difficulties that will arise in managing this case with the proposed

Subclass. Notice to members ofthe Subclass can be provided through Defendants' records,

distribution of notices posted at the properties that the Defendants own, manage, or otherwise

administer oroperate, and by targeted publication (the cost ofwhich should be properly imposed on
Defendants).

10
II
12

68.

A class action, with the proposed Subclass, is superior to other available methods for

the fair and efficient adjudication of this controversy for at least the following reasons: (a) Based upon information and belief, the case will require substantial

13
> _

83 _ u"

14

management and oversight by the Court due to the potential for an excessively large number
of Subclass members;

*.= y
Vi

5 t
V

15

!
O

16
17

(b)

Based upon information and belief, the case will require substantial

management andongoing oversight bythe Court due to the necessary injunctive relief
requested by the Plaintiffs related to Defendants' illegal businesspractices;

18 19 20
21 22

(c)

Based upon information and belief, the case will require substantial

management and oversight by the Court due to a multiplicity of inter-connected, related, and
affiliated entities that may be involved in the wrongs alleged, which the Defendants use as
"fronts" and cover in an effort to avoid liability;

23

(d)

Based upon information and belief, this action will promote an orderly and

24
25
s

expeditious administration andadjudication ofthe claims herein, foster economies of time,


effort, and resources, and ensure uniformity of decisions, especially with respect to
Defendants' uniform business practices that violate local laws;

s
26
27

k \

(e)

Based upon information and belief, the equitable relief sought should be

28

imposed on the Defendants consistently, and a class action, with the proposed Subclass, is
23
COMPLAINT

I
2

superior to individual actions because a series of individual lawsuits would risk compelling
the Defendants to meet inconsistent standards of conduct;

3
4

(f)

Based upon information and belief, handling this case as a class action, with

the proposed Subclass, will potentially alleviate the heavy burden being imposed on the

5
6

judicial districts where City of Los Angeles Unlawful Detainers arebeing filed that should
never have been filed in the first placeexcept for Defendants' illicit business practices; and

(g)

Based upon information and belief, the unnamed members ofthe Subclass are

8 9
10

frightened of retribution from the Defendants for invoking their rights to seek the judicial
relief contained herein, so proceeding in unityas a group will alleviate such fears and

concerns as well as protect the rights of those victimized Subclass members not individually
named herein.

11

12

D.

Class Allegations for the Illegal Unit Subclass

13
%Z
w *3

69.

The Class also includes a subclass defined as: any Class member whose dwelling

14

unit or residential dwelling structure is unapproved for its current residential use or
occupancy (the "Illegal Unit Subclass").
70. The number of Class members within the Illegal Unit Subclass are sufficiently

< r ; -
o j -

15 16
17

I !

numerous that joinder of all members would be unfeasible and not practicable. Although the

18

Plaintiffs are presently unaware of the exact number of Subclass members, the Defendants, based on information and belief, either own, manage, or otherwise administer or operate at least hundreds of
relevant foreclosed properties in the City of Los Angeles where a Class member resides in a dwelling unit or residential dwelling structure that is unapproved for its current use (commonly

19

20

21

22
23

known as an "illegal unit"). Based on local demographics and residential statistics, each relevant property provides shelter to at least an estimated four persons. Thus, the Illegal Unit Subclass
contains hundreds, if not thousands, of people.

24

25
5) U \ \ W

71.

The Subclass is ascertainable and shares a well-defined community of interest in

26 27 28

questions of law and fact, because Defendants infringed and violated, in similar fashion, the rights of
each Subclass member based upon Defendants' uniform conduct in the regularly practiced, unfair,

24
COMPLAINT

1 and unlawful circumvention ofthe rights intended toprotect tenants under LARSO. Such questions
2 of law and fact include but are not limited to:

(a)

Whether Defendants own, manage, orotherwise administer or operate

4
5

dwelling units or residential dwelling structures on foreclosed properties that are being
rented to tenants protected by LARSO;

6
7

(b)

Whether such properties include a unit unapproved for itscurrent use or

occupancy (e.g., as a dwelling or structure where humans can live);

(c)

Whether Defendants, asa common practice and regular policy, have failed to

9
10
11
12
13
i_ (0 _ <~

abate the per seviolation oflaw and substandard condition by failing torelocate tenants who
reside in illegal units and failing to pay the relocation fees required and fixed by LARSO;
(d) Whether Defendants, as a common practice and regular policy, have

intimidated tenants to vacate illegal units without first paying these tenants the required
relocation fees, specifically, in part, by issuing unauthorized notices uponthesetenants
(whether notices to quit or notices to pay rent);

14

<

- ; -

15

(e)

Whether Defendants, as a common practice and regularpolicy,have

16 17
18

intimidated tenants to vacate illegal unitswithout first paying these tenants the required relocation fees, specifically, in part, by initiating unauthorized Unlawful Detainer actions
against them;

19
20 21

(f)

Whether Defendants abused process by initiating Unlawful Detainer actions

(rightfully or wrongfully) againsttenantsresiding in other dwelling structures on a property lot and then using anyjudgmentobtained as a basis for obtaining a writ of possession to

22

forcefully (andwrongfully) evicttenants from an illegal unit on the sameproperty lot; and

23

(g)

Whether Defendants' conduct was undertaken intentionally or negligently.

24 | The Plaintiffsuffered from the same general illicit tactics used by Defendants to circumvent the
25 | same rights applicable to the entire Subclass.
s en

s
\

26

27

28

3Such dwelling units are easily identifiable, at leastin part, by the lackof a Certificate of Occupancy for the unit that is required by LAMC, 91.109, and issued by the City of Los Angeles Department of Building and Safety ("LADBS"). Such a lack of certificatequalifies these dwellings as inherently substandard by the relevant regulatory agencies because Certificates of Occupancy are required"[i]n order to safeguard life and

limb, health, property and public welfare[.]" LAMC, ^1.109


COMPLAINT

72.

The claims ofthe named Plaintiff are typical ofthe claims ofall members ofthe

2 Subclass because the named Plaintiff is a tenant in adwelling unit or residential dwelling structure

3 in the City of Los Angeles that is owned, managed, or otherwise administered or operated by
4 Defendants and obtained by Defendants through aforeclosure. The Plaintiff has been victimized by

5IDefendants' illegal and unfair business practices uniformly practiced by Defendants throughout Los
6 7 8 9 Angeles. In addition, the Plaintiff lives in an "illegal unit," yet Defendants: failed to relocate Plaintiff, failed to pay Plaintiff relocation fees as required by LARSO, issued notices upon Plaintiff that are not applicable to illegal units, and filed an Unlawful Detainer action against Plaintiff (notwithstanding that Plaintiff lives in an illegal unit and cannot be evicted without payment of

10 | relocation fees beforehand). 11 I 73. Plaintiff, as representative party, will fairly and adequately protect the interests of the

12 IIllegal Unit Subclass by vigorously pursuing the lawsuit through the Plaintiffs attorneys, who are 13 Isufficiently skilled and experienced. The individually named Plaintiffhas no interest antagonistic to
< = w

14 those interests of other Subclass members.

<

- 5

15 |

74.

Defendants have acted or refused to act on grounds that apply generally to the

16 Subclass by systematically and as a business practice refusing to generally comply with local
17 ordinances. Specifically, Defendants have, as a common practice, refused and failed to pay
18 relocation fees totenants for the purpose ofrelocating them out from illegal units, which would

19 abate the per se substandard condition ofhaving persons living in such illegal units. Instead,
20 Defendants have abused process to vacate these rent-controlled tenants from the illegal units (as

21 described above) in order tocircumvent local laws and avoid the Defendants' obligation topay
22 relocation fees. The Defendants' common practice of ignoring local housing ordinances designed to

23 ensure the safety ofthe general public applies, by definition, toall members ofthe Subclass. This
24 common practice ofignoring local housing ordinances is appropriate for injunctive and declaratory

25 relief that, among other things, prohibits the Defendants from removing members ofthe Subclass
\

26 from their rent-controlled homes and illegal units without paying relocation benefits.
27
28

H k N
hi

26
COMPLAINT

75.

The common questions oflaw and fact as to the Illegal Unit Subclass predominate

2
3
4

over questions affecting only individual Subclass members;. Those questions include, but are not
limited to:

(a)

Whether Defendants own, manage, orotherwise administer oroperate

5 6
7

dwelling units orresidential dwelling structures on foreclosed properties that are being
rented to tenants protected by LARSO;

(b)

Whether such properties include a unit unapproved for its current use or

occupancy (e.g., as a dwelling orstructure where humans can live);

9
10

(c)

Whether Defendants, asa common practice and regular policy, have failed to

abate the per se violation of law and substandard condition by failing torelocate tenants who
reside in illegal units and failing to pay the relocation fees required and fixed by LARSO;
(d) Whether Defendants, as a common practice and regular policy, have

11

12
13

intimidated tenants to vacate illegal units without first paying these tenantsthe required

14

relocation fees, specifically, in part, by issuing unauthorized notices upon these tenants
(whether notices to quit or notices to pay rent);

15 16
17

(e)

Whether Defendants, as a common practice and regular policy, have

intimidated tenants to vacate illegal units withoutfirst paying these tenants the required relocation fees, specifically, in part, by initiating unauthorized Unlawful Detainer actions
against them;

18

19
20
21

(f)

Whether Defendants abused process by initiating Unlawful Detainer actions

(rightfully or wrongfully) against tenants residing in other dwelling structures on a property

22

lot and then using anyjudgment obtained as a basis for obtaining a writ of possession to
forcefully (and wrongfully) evict tenants from an illegal unit on the same property lot;
(g) Whether Defendants' conduct was undertaken intentionally or negligently;

23
24

25

(h)

Whether Defendants shouldcease prosecuting all Unlawful Detainer actions

26

in the City of Los Angeles pending the outcome of this litigation so as to prevent the current

27
28

piecemeal litigation happening in the form of Unlawful Detaineractionsthat allow the

27
COMPLAINT

1 2

Defendants to take advantage ofSubclass members who cannot individually obtain counsel;
and

3
4

(i)

Whether aSpecial Master should be appointed to approve - prior to service

thereof- any notices that Defendants wish to serve on atenant in the City ofLos Angeles to, in part, determine whether the notice is being served upon tenants ofan illegal unit.
76. The extent and nature of any litigation already begun by or against Subclass

5 6
7

members, concerning the controversy herein, should not preclude the certification ofthe Subclass,
because a certified Subclass would end the piecemeal litigation in the form of Unlawful Detainer
actions that allow the Defendants to take advantage of those members ofthe Subclass who cannot
individually obtain counsel.

9
10
11

77.

There are no difficulties that will arise in managing this case with the proposed

12
13
<

Subclass. Notice to members ofthe Subclass can be provided through Defendants' records,

distribution of notices posted at the properties that the Defendants own, manage, or otherwise

14

administer oroperate, and by targeted publication (the cost ofwhich should be properly imposed on
Defendants).

15

'*

16
17

78.

A classaction, with the proposed Subclass, is superior to otheravailable methods for

the fair and efficient adjudication of this controversy for at least the following reasons:

18

(a)

Based upon information and belief, the case will require substantial

19
20

management and oversight by the Court due to the potential foran excessively large number
of Subclass members;

21

(b)

Based upon information and belief, the case will require substantial

22 23
24

management and ongoing oversight by the Court due to the necessary injunctive relief
requested by the Plaintiffs related to Defendants' illegal business practices;
(c) Based upon information and belief, the case will require substantial

25
s

management and oversight by theCourt dueto a multiplicity of inter-connected, related, and


affiliated entities that may be involved in the wrongs alleged, which the Defendants use as
"fronts" and cover in an effort to avoid liability;

\
l-r \
H

26
27

28

28
COMPLAINT

(d)

Based upon information and belief, this action will promote an orderly and

expeditious administration and adjudication ofthe claims herein, foster economies oftime,
effort, and resources, and ensure uniformity ofdecisions, especially with respect to
Defendants' uniform business practices that violate local laws;

5
6

(e)

Based upon information and belief, the equitable relief sought should be

imposed on the Defendants consistently, and a class action, with the proposed Subclass, is superior to individual actions because a series ofindividual lawsuits would risk compelling
the Defendants to meet inconsistent standards of conduct;

8 9 10

(f)

Based upon information and belief, handling this case as a class action, with

the proposed Subclass, will potentially alleviate the heavy burden being imposed on the
judicial districts where City of Los Angeles Unlawful Detainers are being filed that should
never have been filed in the first place except for Defendants' illicit business practices; and

II

12

13
z

(g)

Based upon infonnation and belief, the unnamed members oftheSubclass are

14

frightened ofretribution from the Defendants for invoking their rights to seek the judicial
reliefcontained herein, so proceeding in unity as a group will alleviate such fears and

05-

< - l/> - I M _.

15

16

concerns as well as protect the rights of those victimized Subclass members not individually
named herein.

17

18
19

E.

Class Allegations for the Citation Subclass

79.

The Class also includes a subclassdefined as: any Class member whose dwelling

20

unit or residential dwelling structure has been citedby either the City of Los Angeles Housing

21

Department ("LAHD") or the City of LosAngeles Department of Building and Safety


("LADBS") forunapproved use,occupancy, construction, or similar violation (the "Citation
Subclass"). 80. The number of Class members within the Citation Subclass are sufficiently numerous

22

23

24

25 Ithat joinder ofall members would beunfeasible and not practicable. Although the Plaintiffs are
sj u

26
27

presently unaware ofthe exact number of Subclass members, the Defendants, based oninformation
and belief, either own, manage, or otherwise administer or operateat least hundreds of relevant

28

foreclosed properties in the City of Los Angeles where a relevant citation has been has been issued
29
COMPLAINT

Iby either the LAHD or LADBS. Based on local demographics and residential statistics, each
relevant property provides shelter to at least an estimated four persons. Thus, the Citation Subclass
i

contains hundreds, if not thousands, of people. 81. The Subclass is ascertainable and shares a well-defined community of interest in

questions oflaw and fact, because Defendants infringed and violated, in similar fashion, the rights of
each Subclass member based upon Defendants' uniform conduct inthe regularly practiced, unfair,
and unlawful circumvention ofthe rights intended to protect tenants under LARSO. Such questions
of law and fact include but are not limited to:

6
7

9
10

(a)

Whether Defendants own, manage, or otherwise administer or operate

dwelling units or residential dwelling structures on foreclosed properties that are being
rented to tenants protected by LARSO;

11

12

(b)

Whether such properties include a unit unapproved for its current use or

13 14

occupancy (e.g., as a dwelling or structure where humans can live)4 where the LAHD or
LADBS has issued a citation for unapproved use, occupancy, or similar violation;

h- a - ^
" .- y

< S-3--

15

(c)

Whether Defendants, as a common practice and regular policy, have failed to

16
17

abate theper se violation of law and substandard condition by failing to relocate tenants

residing in units cited by the LAHD or LADBS for unapproved use, occupancy, or similar
violation (including the failure to pay relocation fees);

18
19

(d)

Whether Defendants, as a common practice and regular policy, have

20
21

intimidated tenants to vacate units that have been cited by LAHD and LADBS for

unapproved use or occupancy, specifically, in part, by issuing unauthorized notices upon


these tenants (whether notices to quit or notices to pay rent) yet failing to pay relocation fees;
(e) Whether Defendants, as a common practice and regular policy, have

22

23
24 25
CO

26

4Such dwelling units are easily identifiable, at least in part, by the lackof a Certificate of Occupancy for the
(-

27

28

unit that is required by LAMC, 91.109, and issued by the City of Los Angeles Department of Building and Safety ("LADBS"). Such a lack of certificate qualifies these dwellings as inherently substandard by the relevant regulatory agencies because Certificates of Occupancy are required "[i]n order to safeguard life and limb, health, property and public welfare[.]" LAMC,-&91.109.
COMPLAINT

1
2

intimidated tenants to vacate units that have beencited by the LAHD and LADBS for

unapproved use or occupancy, specifically, in part, by initiating unauthorized Unlawful


Detainer actions against them - yetfailing to pay relocation fees;

3
4

(f)

Whether Defendants abused process by initiating Unlawful Detainer actions

(rightfully or wrongfully) against tenants residing in other dwelling structures on a property

6
7

lotand then using any judgment obtained as a basis for obtaining a writ of possession to forcefully (and wrongfully) evict tenants from a unit on the same property lotthat has been
cited by the LAHD and LADBS for unapproved residential use or occupancy;

9 10

(g)

Whether Defendants' conduct was undertaken intentionally or negligently.

The Plaintiffsuffered from the same general illicittactics used by Defendants to circumvent the
same rights applicable to the entire Subclass.

11
12

82.

The claims ofthe named Plaintiff are typical ofthe claims of all members ofthe

13
14

Subclass because the named Plaintiff is a tenant in a dwelling unit or residential dwelling structure

in the Cityof LosAngeles that is owned, managed, or otherwise administered or operated by


Defendants and obtained by Defendants through a foreclosure. The Plaintiffhas been victimized by Defendants' illegal and unfair business practices uniformly practiced by Defendants throughout Los

15

16
17

Angeles. In addition, the Plaintifflives in a residential dwelling cited by eitherLAHD or LADBS


for unapproved residential use or occupancy, yet Defendants: failed to relocate Plaintiff, failed to pay Plaintiffrelocation fees as required by LARSO, issued notices upon Plaintiffnot applicable to a
cited dwelling unit, and filed an Unlawful Detainer action against Plaintiff.
83. Plaintiff, as representative party, will fairly and adequately protect the interests ofthe

18

19 20
21

22

Citation Subclassby vigorously pursuing the lawsuitthrough the Plaintiff's attorneys, who are
sufficiently skilled and experienced. The individually named Plaintiff has no interest antagonistic to
those interests of other Subclass members

23 24
25
(3
U

84.

Defendants have acted or refused to act on grounds that apply generally to the

26

Subclass by systematically and as a business practice refusing to generally comply with local ordinances. Specifically, Defendants have, as a common practice, refused and failed to pay

27 28

relocation fees to tenants occupying illegal units that have been cited by the LAHD or LADBS,
31
COMPLAINT

which would abate the/?er se substandard condition of having persons living in such units
unapproved for residential use or occupancy. Instead, Defendants have abused process to vacate
these rent-controlled tenants from the illegal units (as described above) that have been cited bythe
LAHD or LADBS, in orderfor Defendants to circumvent local lawsand avoidthe Defendants'

obligation to pay relocation fees. The Defendants' common practice of ignoring local housing

6 Jordinances designed to ensure the safety ofthe general put'lic applies, by definition, to all members
7 ofthe Subclass. This common practice of ignoring local housing ordinances is appropriate for

8 injunctive and declaratory reliefthat, among other things, prohibits the Defendants from removing
9 members ofthe Subclass from their rent-controlled homes and illegal units cited by the LAHD or

10 | LADBS - without first paying relocation benefits as described in LARSO.


ill 85. Common questions of law and fact as to the: Citation Subclass predominate over

12 Iquestions affecting individual Subclass members. Those questions include, but are not limited to:
13

(a)

Whether Defendants own, manage, or otherwise administer or operate

14
.U (J

dwelling units or residential dwelling structures on foreclosed properties that are being
rented to tenants protected by LARSO; (b) Whether such properties include a dwelling unit unapproved for its current

< 5 i
~ LT <" v

15

16

17

use or occupancy (e.g., as a structure where humans can live) and cited by either the
LAHD or LADBS;

18 19

(c)

Whether Defendants, as a common practice and regular policy, have failed to

20 21
22

abate the per se violation of law and substandard condition by failing to relocate tenants who

reside in illegal units cited by either the LAHD or LADBS, as well as failing to pay the
relocation fees required and fixed by LARSO; (d) Whether Defendants, as a common practice and regular policy, have

23
24

intimidated tenants to vacate illegal units cited by the LAHD or LADBS, specifically, in part, by issuing unauthorized notices upon these tenants (whether notices to quit or notices to pay

25
s

\
Is N
Hi

26

rent);
(e) Whether Defendants, as a common practice and regular policy, have

27

28

32
COMPLAINT

1
2

intimidated tenants tovacate illegal units cited by the LAHD orLADBS without first paying these tenants the required relocation fees, specifically, in part, by initiating unauthorized
Unlawful Detainer actions against them;

(f)

Whether Defendants abused process; by initiating Unlawful Detainer actions

(rightfully or wrongfully) against tenants residing in other dwelling structures ona property lot and then using any judgment obtained asa basis for obtaining a writ of possession to

6
7

forcefully (and wrongfully) evict tenants from a unit on the same property lot that had been
cited by either the LAHD or LADBS forunapproved residential use or occupancy;

9
10

(g)
(j)

Whether Defendants' conduct was undertaken intentionally ornegligently;


Whether Defendants should cease prosecuting all Unlawful Detainer actions

11

in the City of Los Angeles pending the outcome of this litigation so as to prevent the current

12

piecemeal litigation happening inthe form of Unlawful Detainer actions that allow the
Defendants to take advantage of Subclass members who cannot individually obtain counsel;
and

13
< = r z = t- o " *

14

< 1 -, -

15

(k)

Whether a Special Master should be appointed to approve - prior to service

16

thereof- any notices that Defendants wish to serve on a tenant in the City of Los Angeles in orderto, in part, determine whether the notice is being served upontenants of a unitcitedby
the LAHD or LADBS for unapproved residential use or occupancy.

17

18

19

86.

The extent and nature of any litigation already begun by or against Subclass

20

members, concerningthe controversy herein, should not preclude the certification ofthe Subclass, because a certified Subclass would end the piecemeal litigation in the form of Unlawful Detainer
actions that allow the Defendants to take advantage of those members ofthe Subclass who cannot
individually obtain counsel. 87. There are no difficulties that will arise in managing this case with the proposed

21

22

23

24

25
ffl

Subclass. Notice to members ofthe Subclass can be provided through Defendants' records,

\
\ H

26
27

distribution of notices posted at the properties that the Defendants own, manage, or otherwise

administeror operate, and by targeted publication (the cost of which should be properly imposedon
Defendants).
33
COMPLAINT

28

88.

A class action, with theproposed Subclass, is superior to other available methods for

the fair and efficient adjudication of this controversy for at leastthe following reasons: (a) Based upon information and belief, thecase will require substantial

management and oversight bythe Court dueto the potential for an excessively large number
of Subclass members;

(b)

Based uponinformation and belief, the case will require substantial

management and ongoing oversight by the Court dueto the necessary injunctive relief
requested by the Plaintiffs related to Defendants' illegal business practices;
(c) Based upon informationand belief, the case will require substantial

10
11
12

management and oversight by the Court due to a multiplicity of inter-connected, related, and
affiliated entities that may be involved in the wrongs alleged, which the Defendants use as
"fronts" and cover in an effort to avoid liability;

13
i < E .2"
w

(d)

Based upon information and belief, this action will promote an orderly and

t- Z !r
o

14

expeditious administration and adjudication ofthe claims herein, foster economiesof time,
effort, and resources, and ensure uniformity of decisions, especially with respect to
Defendants' uniform business practices that violate local laws;

< 3-3-

15

16

17

(e)

Based upon information and belief, i:he equitable relief sought should be

18
19

imposed on the Defendants consistently, and a class action, with the proposed Subclass, is
superior to individual actions because a series of individual lawsuits would risk compelling
the Defendants to meet inconsistent standards of conduct;

20

21
22

(f)

Based upon information and belief, handling this case as a class action, with

the proposed Subclass, will potentially alleviate the heavy burden being imposed on the judicial districts where City of Los Angeles UnlawJiil Detainers are being filed that should
never have been filed in the first place except for Defendants' illicit business practices; and

23

24

25
26

(g)

Based upon information and belief, ihe unnamed members ofthe Subclass are

frightened of retribution from the Defendants for invoking their rights to seek the judicial
relief contained herein, so proceeding in unity as a group will alleviate such fears and

27

28

34
COMPLAINT

concerns as well as protect the rights ofthose victimized Subclass members not individually
named herein.

89.

In summary, Defendants have acted or refused to act on grounds thatapply generally

to the Subclass bysystematically and as a business practice refusing to comply withlocal ordinances

5 Jthat require them to either (a) restore the dwellings ofthe Citation Subclass to their approved use,
6 (b)obtain Certificates of Occupancy for those dwellings, or (c) pay the tenants the relocation fees
7 pursuant to LARSO. The Defendants' common practice of ignoring local housing ordinances

8 designed to ensure the safety ofthe general public applies, bydefinition, to all members ofthe
9 10

Citation Subclass. This common practice of ignoring local housing ordinances is also appropriate

for injunctive and declaratory relief that, among other things, prohibitsthe Defendants from
collecting rent, declares that the members ofthe Citation Subclass are not obligated to pay rent,

11

12 13

prohibits the Defendants from removing members ofthe Citation Subclass from theirhomes without
first paying relocation benefits as required by LARSO, and compels the Defendants to obtain Certificates of Occupancy for all dwelling units pursuant to Section 91.109 ofthe Los Angeles
Municipal Code.
F. Class Allegations for the Article 14 Subclass

14
<

15
16 17

90.

The Class includes a subclass defined as: any Class member evicted or forced to

18
19

vacate after December 23,2008 ("Article 14 Subclass").' 91. The number of Class members within the Article 14 Subclass are sufficiently

20

numerous that joinder of all members would be unfeasible and not practicable. Although the

21
22

Plaintiffs are presently unaware ofthe exact number of Subclass members, the Defendants, based on information and belief, either own, manage, or otherwise administer or operate at least hundreds of
relevant foreclosed properties in the City of Los Angeles where a Subclass member was either
evicted or otherwise forced to vacate after December 23, 2008. Based on local demographics and

23
24

25

residential statistics, each relevant property provides shelter to at least an estimated four persons.

26
27 28

Thus, the Article 14 Subclass contains hundreds, if not thousands, of people.

5This Subclass is intended to encompass all Class members benefiting from LAMC, 49.90-49.95 (Article
14.1 ofthe LAMC), which went into effect on December 23, 2008.
COMPLAINT

1
2

92.

The Subclass is ascertainable and shares a well-defined community of interest in

questions oflaw and fact, because Defendants infringed and violated, insimilar fashion, the rights of
each Subclass member based upon Defendants' uniform conduct in the regularly practiced, unfair,
and unlawful circumvention ofthe rights intended to protecttenants under the LAMC (particularly Article 14.1). Such questions of law and fact include but Eire not limited to: (a) Whether Defendants own, manage, or otherwise administer or operate

3
4

dwelling units or residential dwelling structures on foreclosed properties that arebeing


rentedto tenants protected by the temporary expansion of LARSO;

(b)

Whether Defendants, as a common practice and regular policy, issued notices

10
11

to tenants between December 23,2008 and December 31,2010, commanding them to "quit"
and vacate their homes when such notices were per se not supported by the "good cause"

12

eviction requirements of LARSO (e.g., 3/60/90-day notices to quit);

13

(c)

WhetherDefendants, as a common practice and regular policy, issued such

14
<
o

per se unauthorized Notices to Quit for purposes of vacating the tenants from their rent
controlled homes in order to permanently remove the property from the rental market, thereby facilitating the sale ofthe foreclosed properties and selling such properties at a
higher sale price;

- = -
s
W1 *t

15

16

17

18

(d)

Whether Defendants, as a common practice and regular policy, failed to pay

19
20

relocation fees to the displaced tenants in the amounts fixed by LARSO, notwithstanding
Defendants' demand that the tenants vacate the foreclosed properties (i.e., through the

21

Notices to Quit) with the intent of permanently removing the foreclosed properties from the
rental market to improve the properties' marketability and sale price;
(e) Whether Defendants, as a common practice and regular policy, abused

22

23
24

process by issuing these per se unauthorized Notices to Quit upon tenants who were

25
26
\

otherwise protected by LARSO's "good cause" eviction requirements and then proceeding to
file Unlawful Detainer actions based upon these unauthorized Notices to Quit (e.g., 3/60/90day notices to quit); and

27

28

(f)

Whether Defendants' conduct was undertaken intentionally or negligently.


36
COMPLAINT

The Plaintiffsuffered from the same general illicit tactics and "evict and sell" business model used

2 Iby Defendants to circumvent the same rights applicable to the entire Subclass.
3 93. The claims ofthe named Plaintiffare typical ofthe claims ofall members ofthe 4 Subclass because the named Plaintiff is atenant in adwelling unit or residential dwelling structure

5 in the City of Los Angeles that is owned, managed, or otherwise administered or operated by 6 Defendants and obtained by Defendants through aforeclosure. The Plaintiff has been victimized by

7IDefendants' illegal and unfair business practices uniformly practiced by Defendants throughout Los
8 Angeles. In addition, the Plaintiff lives in arent-controlled property but nevertheless, during the 9 relevant time period, received aNotice to Quit from Defendants commanding Plaintiff to vacate the
10 property without a "good cause" as required by LARSO.

11

94.

Plaintiff, as representative party, will fairly and adequately protect the interests ofthe

12 Article 14 Subclass by vigorously pursuing the lawsuit through the Plaintiffs attorneys, who are

13 Isufficiently skilled and experienced. The individually named Plaintiffhas no interest antagonistic to
_

H "Z^

14 those interests of other Subclass members.

15 J
17
18

95. Defendants have acted or refused to act on grounds that apply generally to the

16 | Subclass by systematically and as abusiness practice refusing to generally comply with local
ordinances, such as LARSO and Article 14.1 ofthe LAMC. More specifically, Defendants have

abused process to vacate rent-controlled tenants from foreclosed properties in order to remove

19 20 21
22

dwelling units from the rental market but without first paying the displaced tenants relocation fees as
required and fixed by LARSO. The Defendants' common practice ofignoring local housing ordinances designed to ensure the safety ofthe general public applies, by definition, to all members
ofthe Subclass. This common practice ofignoring local housing ordinances isappropriate for

23 24 25
8

injunctive and declaratory relief that, among other things, prohibits the Defendants from removing
members ofthe Subclass from theirrent-controlled homes without paying relocation benefits as
required and fixed by LARSO.
///
///

26
27

28

///
37
COMPLAINT

96.

The common questions of law and fact as to the Article 14 Subclass predominate

over questions affecting only individual Subclass members. Those questions include, but are not
limited to:

(a)

Whether Defendants own, manage, or otherwise administer or operate

dwelling units or residential dwelling structures on foreclosed properties that are being rented to tenants protected by Article 14.1 ofthe LAMC and LARSO; (b) Whether Defendants, as policy and regular operating procedure, have

undertaken unlawful and unfair business practices intended to circumvent LARSO


notwithstanding passage of Article 14.1 ofthe LAMC - specifically by issuing Notices to

10
11

Quit commanding the tenants to "quit" and vacate iheir rent controlled dwellings without a

"good cause" as listed in, and required by, LARSO (e.g., 3/60/90-day notices to quit);

12

(c)

Whether Defendants, as common practice and regular policy, and

13
a E 0 ^ 5 I- Z <

notwithstanding the passage of Article 14.1 ofthe LAMC effective December 23,2008,
vacated tenants from rent controlled properties in order to remove the properties from the
rental market to, in turn, facilitate the sale ofthe rent-controlled investments and increase the

14

15 16

sale price;

17

(d)

Whether Defendants - when intendingto remove a property from the rental

18

market for sale purposes - initiated eviction proceedings, after the passage of Article 14.1 of

19

the LAMC, basedon Notices to Quit that were per se invalid under LARSO ratherthan pay
the tenants the required relocation fees as fixed by LARSO;

20

21
22

(e)
(f)

Whether Defendants' conduct was undertaken intentionally or negligently;


Whether Defendants should cease prosecuting all Unlawful Detainer actions

23

in the City of Los Angeles pending the outcome of this litigation so as to prevent the current
piecemeal litigation happening in the form of Unlawful Detainer actions that allow the

24

25
5)
M

Defendants to take advantage of Subclass members who cannot individually obtain counsel;
and

\
H

26

\ H

27 28

(g)

Whether a Special Master should be appointed to approve - prior to service

thereof- any noticesthat Defendants wish to serve on a tenant in the City of Los Angeles.
38
COMPLAINT

1
2

97.

Plaintiff, as representative party, will fairly and adequately protect the interests ofthe

December 23,2008 to the Present Subclass by vigorously pursuing the lawsuit through the

3
4

Plaintiffs attorneys who are sufficiently skilled and experienced. The individually named Plaintiff has no interest antagonistic to those interests of other members ofthe December 23,2008 to the
Present Subclass.

5 6
7 8 9 10
11

98.

The extent and nature ofany litigation already begun by or against Subclass

members, concerning the controversy herein, should not preclude the certification ofthe Subclass,
because a certified Subclass would end the piecemeal litigation inthe form ofUnlawful Detainer
actions that allow the Defendants to take advantage of those members ofthe Subclass who cannot
individually obtain counsel.

99.

There areno difficulties that will arise inmanaging this case with the proposed

12
13 14 15

Subclass. Notice to members ofthe Subclass can be provided through Defendants' records,

distribution ofnotices posted at the properties that the Defendants own, manage, orotherwise

administer or operate, and by targeted publication (the cost ofwhich should be properly imposed on
Defendants).

16
17
18

100.

A class action, with the proposed Subclass, is superior to other available methods for

the fair and efficient adjudication of this controversy for at least the following reasons:

(a)

Based upon information and belief, the case will require substantial

19
20

management and oversight by the Court due to the potential for an excessively large number
of Subclass members;

21 22

(b)

Based upon information and belief, the case will require substantial

management and ongoing oversight by the Court due to the necessary injunctive relief
requested by the Plaintiffs related to Defendants' illegal business practices;
(c) Based upon information and belief, the case will require substantial

23
24

25
(!)

management and oversight by the Court due toa multiplicity ofinter-connected, related, and
affiliated entities that may be involved in the wrongs alleged, which the Defendants use as
"fronts" and cover in an effort to avoid liability;

26
\
H h

27

28

39
COMPLAINT

2
3

(d) Based upon information and belief, this action will promote an orderly and expeditious administration and adjudication ofthe claims herein, foster economies oftime,
effort, and resources, and ensure uniformity ofdecisions, especially with respect to

Defendants' uniform business practices that violate local laws including ignoring Article
14.1 ofthe LAMC;

(e)

Based upon information and belief, the equitable relief sought should be

imposed on the Defendants consistently, and aclass action, with the proposed Subclass, is superior to individual actions because aseries ofindividual lawsuits would risk compelling
the Defendants to meet inconsistent standards of conduct;

9
10

(f)

Based upon information and belief, handling this case as aclass action, with

11

the proposed Subclass, will potentially alleviate the heavy burden being imposed on the

12

judicial districts where City ofLos Angeles Unlawful Detainers are being filed that should
never have been filed in the first place except for Defendants' illicit business practices (including ignoring Article 14.1 ofthe LAMC); and

13
14

< r 'i s <

15

(g)

Based upon information and belief, the unnamed members ofthe Subclass are

16

frightened ofretribution from the Defendants for invoking their rights to seek the judicial
relief contained herein, soproceeding inunity asa group will alleviate such fears and

17

18

concerns as well as protect the rights ofthose victimized Subclass members not individually
named herein.
CAUSES OF ACTION

19

20

21

FIRST CAUSE OF ACTION: FAILURE TO PAY RELOCATION

22

(By the AllMembers ofthe Class Against All Defendants)

23
24

101.

Plaintiffs incorporate herein by reference paragraphs 1through 100 as though fully

set forth herein.

25
e
s

102.

Plaintiffs are or were tenantsresiding in dwelling units or residential dwelling

26
27

structures on foreclosed properties subject to LARSO.

28

40 COMPLAINT

103.

When a tenancy that is subject to LARSO isterminated inorder to take a dwelling

2 3
4

unit or residential unit permanently offthe rental market, LARSO requires that the landlord pay to
the tenant certain relocation fees fixed by LARSO.

104.

As more fully detailed above, the Defendants, as a direct policy and intended

consequence ofcertain policies and practices, have vacated properties (subject to LARSO) ofits
tenants for the purpose of, among others, permanently removing the properties from the rental
market to, among other things, enhance the marketability and sale price of such properties.

6
7

8 9
10
II

Notwithstanding the Defendants' true purposes, Defendants failed to pay relocation fees required by
LARSO under such circumstances.

105.

When a tenancy that is subject to LARSO comprises a dwelling unapproved for

residential use and occupancy, the landlord must either repair the unit to a sufficient degree to obtain

12

a Certificate of Occupancy from LADBS or relocate the tenants (including payment ofrelocation
fees fixed by LARSO).

0>

13
14

I
h

<ozt
o
_ -

!t:

106.

As more fully detailed above, the Defendants, as a direct policy and intended

< r -5 .5
l/l

15
16

consequence of certain policies and practices, have continued to permit tenants - without regard for
the tenants' safetyor health- to reside in these "illegal" units that are inherently substandard rather
than pay the tenants the required relocation fees fixed by LARSO.

17

18

107.

As more fully detailed above, the Defendants have also,as an alternative policy and

19
20 21
22

business practice, vacated these "illegal" units of its tenants yet have refused and failed to paythe
tenants the required relocation fees fixed by LARSO.

108.

Defendants have employed various subterfuges to vacate these properties without

paying the mandatory relocation fees, including but not limited to threats and harassment, threats of
eviction, the shut-off of utilities, actual evictions predicated on unauthorized notices, and other
abuses of process.

23 24 25
S
u

109.

As a proximate result, the Plaintiffs have been damaged in an amount to be proven at

26 27

trial, including as to the required relocation fees.

\
H

110.

In light ofthe intended purposes ofthe Defendants' conscious failure to complywith

28

LARSO and the LAMC concerning the paymentof relocation assistance, the Defendants' conduct
41
COMPLAINT

1 2 3
4

and theconduct ofthe Defendants' officers, directors, and/or managing agents who authorized,

directed, and/or ratified the Defendants' acts was willful and intentional and done with oppression

and malice against the members ofthe Class, and with aconscious disregard oftheir rights, safety,
comfort, and well-being. In addition, the above conduct isatleast inpart a premeditated course of
conduct intended to harass, and create discomfort for, the Class members in order to force them to

6 7
8

vacate their rent controlled apartments for the purposes of enhancing Defendants' marketability and

price ofthe rent-controlled properties. Therefore, under these circumstances, the Defendants'
behavior is despicable and warrants the imposition ofpunitive damages ina sum appropriate to
punish the Defendants and deter future, similar misconduct.
SECOND CAUSE OF ACTION; VIOLATION OF
BUSINESS AND PROFESSIONS CODE. 617200

9 10
11

12

(By AllMembers ofthe Class Against All Defendants)

13
^ o- o i- <>::;= < - 3
a

111.

Plaintiffs incorporate herein by reference peiragraphs 1 through 100 and 102 through

14
15 16 17
18

108 as though fully set forth herein. 112. The Defendants, and each of them, as a business model ("evict and sell") have

<

undertaken a course of conduct, as fully outlined above, that is unlawful, unfair, fraudulent, and/or
deceptive by, among other ways:

(a)

Issuing facially invalid"notices to quit" without one ofthe "good cause"

19
20

permitted reasons to evict tenants pursuant to LARSO;

(b)

Issuing "notice to pay rent or quit" without an intent or mechanism to actually

21
22

collect the requested rent;

(c) (d)

Usingthe notices as basis to file bad faith or meritless eviction actions; Filing unlawful detainer actions for the purpose of intimidating tenants into

23
24 25
CD
U

vacating rent-controlled dwelling units, in part, for the purpose of avoiding payment of
relocation fees under LARSO;

\
h

26 27

(e)

Shutting-offof utijities to dwelling units, or allowing such utilities to be shut

off for the purpose of encouraging the tenants into vacating in the first instance, and in the
second instance, without the payment of relocation fees;
42
COMPLAINT

28

(f)

Owning, managing, orotherwise administering oroperating dwelling units on

foreclosed properties that have not been issued a Certificate ofOccupancy asrequired by
Section 91.109 ofthe Los Angeles Municipal Code;

3
4

(g)

Failing to undertake the necessary compliance work at itsforeclosed

properties inorder to obtain a Certificate ofOccupancy that complies with Section 91.109.1
ofthe Los Angeles Municipal Code, a violation ofthe law that also may be enforced
pursuant to Section 36900(a) ofthe Government Code;

(h)

Demanding and collecting rent without first obtaining a Certificate of

9 10

Occupancy from the LADBS;

(i)

Misleading the Tenants into vacating the rent-controlled properties in the first

11

instance and, in the second instance, without payingthe relocation fees to which the Tenants
are entitled;

12

13
14
< "a

(j)

Owning, managing, or otherwise administering or operating dwelling units on

foreclosed properties in substandard condition (as determined by a governmental agency),


thereby limiting the Tenants' beneficial use ofthe property; and (k) Failing to bring structures in compliance with their authorized use.

15

16

17

113.

Each of these business practices and the others described in the preceding causes of

18

action, as well as above in the factual background section and incorporated by reference into this

19

cause of action, are also unfair business practicesin that they violate established public policies
and/or laws without any substantial justification on the part of Defendants.

20

21
22

114.

Plaintiffs have lost money or property as a result ofthe Defendants' unlawful and

unfair business practices, or will lose money or property if Defendants are not enjoined by the Court from, among other things, issuing tenants invalid and unauthorized notices to quit, abusing process through the unlawful detainer process, failing to generally maintain the rental properties owned by

23

24

25
s H N

Defendants (including utility servicesthereto), condoningtenants residing in unapproved dwellings,


threatening and intimidating tenants into vacating dwelling units unapproved for residential use or

26 27

occupancy without paying tenants the mandatory relocation fees, and refusing to put buildings into a
sufficiently habitable condition that a Certificate of Occupancy can be issued.
43
COMPLAINT

28

115.

As a proximate result ofDefendants' conduct, Plaintiffs have been damaged inan

2 amount tobeproven at trial - sums that should be reimbursed or disgorged by Defendants -

3 including but not limited to: (a) the payment ofrent onthe "illegal" units, (b) the payment of

4 attorneys' fees and other legal costs expended todefend unlawful detainers predicated upon facially
5 invalid and unauthorized notices to quit, (c) the payment of repaircostsofthe tenants' units, (d) the

6 payment of utility charges that the Plaintiffs incurred when Defendants shut-off water, light, and gas
7 services, and (e)the loss of mandatory relocation assistance (as fixed by LARSO) that was not paid

8 by Defendants upon the Defendants forcefully vacating the tenants from rent-controlled properties.
9 116. These wrongs entitle the Plaintiffs to boththe remedies provided by California's

10 Unfair Competition Law and the ordinary civil remedies authorized byto Section 36900(a) ofthe
11
12

Government Code for violations of local ordinances including, but not limited to, damages and
injunctive relief.

13
< = Z

117.

Moreover, due to Defendants' continuing pattern and practice of conduct, then

14 pursuant to Business and Professions Code, 17203, Plaintiffs seek an injunction permanently

<

15 enjoining Defendants from continuing their unlawful and unfair business practices and compelling
16 them to remedy the problems caused by their previous unlawful and unfair business practices.

17
18

Such a preliminary and permanentinjunction would, at least in part, preclude Defendantsfrom


continuing their violations of local ordinances. Such injunctive relief would prohibit the Defendants

19 1from, among other things, acting as landlords for buildings that do not comply with state and local
20 housing codes and would compel them to put buildings into a sufficiently habitable condition that a

21
22
23
24

Certificate of Occupancy can be issued. Appropriate injunctive relief would compel the Defendants
to either bring the inherently substandard dwelling units (e.g., those without a Certificate of
Occupancy) into legal compliance or legally relocate the tenants.
THIRD CAUSE OF ACTION: NEGLIGENCE

25

(ByAll Members ofthe Class Against All Defendants)

26

118.

Plaintiffs incorporate herein by reference paragraphs 1 through 100, 102 through 108

27 and 112 through 114 as though fully set forth herein.


28

44
COMPLAINT

119.

As set forth in detail above, Defendants owed Plaintiffs a general duty of care arising

out of their tenancies as Defendants became Plaintiffs' landlords by obtaining ownership ofthe

relevant properties through foreclosure - a duty ofcare created by generally-applicable law and local
ordinancessuch as Section 91.109 and Article 14.1 ofthe Los Angeles Municipal Code. This duty

ofcare is actionable under both common law negligence and Section 36900(a) ofthe Government

Code that renders anyviolation of a municipal ordinance actionable.

120.

This duty of care as a landlord, owed by Defendants to Plaintiffs, includes but is not

8
9

limited to: (a) refraining from illicit activities intended to vacate tenants from their rent-controlled
homes (e.g., invalid notices, baseless eviction actions, utility shut-offs, general harassment and
intimidation), (b) abiding by local ordinances requiring payment of fixed relocation sums to tenants

10
11

under express circumstances, and (c)providing the Plaintiffs with a safe and habitable dwelling not
deemed substandard and sufficiently compliant with local laws to be issued a Certificate of
Occupancy by LADBS, and (d) otherwise abiding by all laws intended to protect tenants.

12

13
< a !.

(- m -"Z

14

121.

To the extent that any of the above allegations may be deemed or categorized as

15
in 5 -

"accidental" rather than intentional, then the Defendants breached their general duty by negligently

16

undertaking the actions described more fully detailed above.

17

122.

As a proximate result ofthe Defendants' negligence, Plaintiffs suffered injuries and

18
19

damages, as alleged herein above, in an amount to be proven at trial.

123.

Additionally, Plaintiffs seek a preliminary and permanent injunction precluding

20

Defendants from continuing their violations of local ordinances. Such injunctive relief would

21

Iprohibit the Defendants from, among other things, acting as landlords for buildings that do not
comply with state and local housing codes and from refusing to put buildings into a sufficiently
habitable condition that a Certificate of Occupancy can be issued. Appropriate injunctive relief would compel the Defendants to either bring the inherently substandard dwelling units (e.g., those without a Certificate of Occupancy) into legal compliance or legally relocate the tenants.

22

23

24

25
S
01

\ \

26

27 28

45
COMPLAINT

1 2
3

PRAYER FOR RELIEF

WHEREFORE, Plaintiffs pray for judgment against Defendants, and each of them, as
follows:

ON THE FHtST CAUSE OF ACTION;

5
6
7

1.
2.
3.

For compensatory and general, statutory damages according to proof;


For preliminary and permanent injunctive relief;
For declaratory relief; and

4.

Forpunitive and exemplary damages in order to deter future misconduct.

9
10
11

ON THE SECOND CAUSE OF ACTION;

5.
6.

For disgorgement and restitution according to proof;


For declaratory relief; and

12
13
^ 5;5
t- & Z*Z

7.

For preliminary and permanent injunctive relief.

ON THE TfflRD CAUSE OF ACTION;

14

8.
9.

For compensatory and general damages according to proof;


For declaratory relief; and

IT" *

<" "

15

1 !
O

16

10.

For preliminary and permanent injunctive relief.

17

ON ALL CAUSES OF ACTION

18

11.
12.

For attorneys' fees and costs pursuant to applicable statutes and ordinances; and
For such other and further relief that the Court may deem just and proper.

19 20 21

DATED: May

,2011

BASTA, Inc.

22

By: ^ f l &^

23
24

Daniel Jr.Bramzond"

Attorneys for Plaintiffs

25

8
26
1-

27

28

46
COMPLAINT

CM-010
ATTORNEY OR PARTY WITHOUT ATTORNEY (Name, Suit Barnumber, end adOms):
FOR COURT USe ONLY

-Daniel J. Bramzon, SBN 214325


BASTA, Inc.

2500 Wilshire Blvd., Suite 1111 Los Angeles, California 90057

telephone no, (213)736-5050

fax no, (213)736-5055

u- ANGELES SUPERIOR COURT EILED LOS


MAY 11 2011
John AXterKc.^. M0ojticwiww^

ATTORNEY FOR (Name): Plaintiffs SUPERIOR COURT OF CALIFORNIA. COUNTY OF LOS AngeleS
street address: \ \ ] N. Hill Street

mailing address: 111 N. Hill Street

city and zip code: Los Angeles, California 90012 branch name: Central District
CASE NAME:

9y. '-aJeKr^vsTr

Deputy

Gonzalez, et al. v. JP Morgan Chase Bank, et al.


CIVIL CASE COVER SHEET

Complex Case Designation

CASE NUMBER:

l~71 Unlimited
(Amount
demanded

Limited
(Amount
demanded is

I Counter

1 Joinder
JUDGE:

Filed with first appearance by defendant

PC461404

(Cal. Rules of Court, rule 3.402) Items 1-6 below must be completed (see instructions on page 2). 1. Check one box below for the case type that best describes this case:
exceeds $25,000) $25,000 or less)
Auto Tort Contract

Auto (22)
I Uninsured motorist (46)

I Breach olcontract/warranty (06)

Provisionally Complex Civil Litigation (Cal. Rules of Court, rules 3.400-3.403)

CD Rule 3.740 collections (09)


I I Other collections (09) I Insurance coverage (18)

I
L

I Antitrust/Trade regulation (03)


I Construction defect (10)

OUter PI/PD/WD (Personal Injury/Property Damage/Wrongful Death) Tort

L~Z] Mass tort (40)


I I Securities litigation (28) I I Environmental/Toxic tort (30) [ J Insurance coverage claims arising from the
above listed provisionally complex case types (41)
Enforcement of Judgment

Asbestos (04) r~~l Product liability (24)


I I Medical malpractice (45)

LZZI Other contract (37)


Real Property

I Eminent domain/Inverse

Other PI/PD/WD (23)


Business tort/unfair business practice (07)

condemnation (14)

Non-PI/PD/WD (Other) Tort

I
I

I Wrongful eviction (33)


I Other real property (26)

I I Civil rights (08)


I I Defamation (13)

Unlawful Detainer

L I Enforcement ofjudgment (20)


Miscellaneous Civil Complaint

Fraud (16)
I Intellectual property (19)

L_J Commercial (31) I I Residential (32)

[Z3 RICO (27)


I J Other complaint (not specified above) (42)
Miscellaneous Civil Petition

I I
I

Drugs (38)
I Asset forfeiture (05) I Petition re: arbitration award (11)
I Writ ofmandate (02)

Professional negligence (25)


Other non-PI/PD/WD tort (35)
Wrongful termination (36)

Judicial Review

[!Zj Partnership and corporate governance (21)


I I Other petition (not specified above) (43)

Bloyment

| | Other employment (15) I I Other judicial review (39) 2. This case I I is | | is not complex under rule 3.400 of the California Rules of Court. Ifthe case is complex, mark the factors requiring exceptional judicial management: d. I / I Large number of witnesses a. I I Large number of separately represented parties b. I / I Extensive motion practice raising difficult ornovel e. \V2 Coordination with related actions pending in one or more courts in other counties, states, orcountries, orin a federal court issues that will be time-consuming to resolve f. GZH Substantial postjudgment judicial supervision c. I / I Substantial amountof documentary evidence
3.

Remedies sought (check allthat apply): a.l / I monetary b.I / I nonmonetary; declaratory orinjunctive relief
This case I / 1is I I is not a class action suit. If there are any known related cases, file and serve a notice of related case. (You may use form CM-015.)

c. [_jpunitive

4.

Number ofcauses ofaction (specify): Three: Failure to Pay Relocation; Violation of B&P 17200; and Negligence

5. 6.

Date: May 8, 20 ll
Daniel J. Bramzon
(TYPE OR PRINT NAME)

HM
NOTICE

QRNEY FOR PARTY)

Plaintiffmust file this cover sheet with the first paper filed in the action or proceeding (except small claims cases or cases filed under the Probate Code, Family Code, or Welfare and Institutions Code). (Cal. Rules of Court, rule 3.220.) Failure to file may result
in sanctions.

\
I-

File this cover sheet in addition to any cover sheet required by local court rule.

I-

Ifthis case is complex under rule 3.400 et seq. of the California Rules of Court, you must serve a copy of this cover sheet on all
other parties to the action or proceeding. Unless this is a collections case under rule 3.740 or a complex case, this cover sheet will be used for statistical purposes only.
Form Adopted for Mandatory Um
Jutactal Coundl of CaMomia

CIVIL CASE COVER SHEET

CM-010 |Rv. July 1,20071

Cal. Rtfes of Court, rules 2.30. 3 220. 3.400-3.403, 3.740. Cal. Standards of Judicial Administration, std. 3.10 rvww.cov7tjiri/b.ca.0ov

CM-010

To Plaintiffs and Others Filing First Papers. If you are filing a first paper (for example, a complaint) in a civil case you must comDlete and file along with your first paper, the CM Case Cover Sheet contained on page 1. This information will be used to compile 3cs%bout me, *lumbers* cases filed. You must complete items 1through 6on the sheet. In item 1jfou,must check one box for the case type that best describes the case. If the case fits both ageneral and amore specific type of case listed in item 1, c*emore^peSc-one. If the case has multiple causes of action, check the box that best indicates the primary cause of action To assist you in completing the sheet, examples of the cases that belong under each case type in item 1are provided beta*. Acoyer sheet must be filed only with your initial paper. Failure to file a cover sheet with the first paper filed in a civil case may subject a party,
its counsel, or both to sanctions under rules 2.30 and 3.220 of the California Rules of Court.

INSTRUCTIONS ON HOW TOCOMPLETE THE COVER SHEET

To Parties In Rule 3740 Collections Cases. A"collections case" under rule 3.740 is defined as an action for recovery of money owed in a sum stated to be certain that is not more than $25,000, exclusive of interest and attorney's fees, arising from a transactor in

damaoes (21f punitive damages, (3) recovery of real property, (4) recovery of personal property, or (5) a prejudgment writ o
case will be subject to the requirements for service and obtaining a judgment in rule 3.740.

which property, services, or money was acquired on credit Acollections case does no* include an action seeking *efollowing. (1 tort attachment The identification of acase as a rule 3.740 collections case on this form means that it will be exempt ^thegewal

time-for-service requirements and case management rules, unless a defendant files a responsive pleading. Arule 3.740 collections

To Parties In Complex Cases. In complex cases only, parties must also use the Qvil Case Cover Sheet to designate whether the case is complex. If aplaintiff believes the case is complex under rule 3.400 of the California Rules of Court, this must be mdicated by
the case is complex.
Auto Tort
Contract

completing the appropriate boxes in items 1and 2. If aplaintiff designates acase as complex, the cover sheet must be servedhjnth the complaint on all parties to the action. Adefendant may file and serve no later than the time of its first appearance %W**" plaintiffs designaljon, acounter-designation that the case is not complex, or. if the plaintiff has made no des.gnaton, adesignation that
CASE TYPES AND EXAMPLES

ProvisionallyComplex Civil Litigation(Cal.


Rule* of Court Rules 3.400-3.403) Antitrust/Trade Regulation (03) Construction Defect (10) Claims Involving Mass Tort (40) Securities Litigation (28) Environmental/Toxic Tort (30) Insurance Coverage Claims

Auto (22)-Personal Injury/Property


Damage/Wrongful Death Uninsured Motorist (46) (if the
case involves en uninsured

Breach of Contract/Warranty (06)


Breach of Rental/Lease

Contract (not unlawfuldetainer or wrongful eviction)


Contract/Warranty Breach-Seller

motorist claim subject to arbitration, check this item instead of Auto)

Plaintiff(not fraudor negligence) Negligent Breach of Contract/


Warranty Other Breach of Contract/Warranty

Other PVPDAVD (Personal Injury'

Property Damege/Wrongful Death)


Tort

(arising from provisionally complex case type listed above) (41)


Enforcement of Judgment

Collections (e.g., money owed, open


book accounts) (09)
Collection Case-Seller Plaintiff

Asbestos (04) Asbestos Property Damage Asbestos Personal Injury/

Enforcement of Judgment (20) Abstract of Judgment (Out of


County)

Other Promissory Note/Collections


Case

Confession of Judgment (nondomestic relations) Sister State Judgment Administrative Agency Award (not unpaid taxes) Petition/Certification of Entry of

Wrongful Death Product Liability (not asbestos or


toxic/environmental) (24)

Insurance Coverage (notprovisionally


complex) (18) Auto Subrogation Other Coverage Other Contract (37)
Contractual Fraud

Medical Malpractice (45) Medical Malpractice-

Physicians & Surgeons


Other Professional Health Care

Judgment on Unpaid Taxes


Other Enforcement of Judgment
Case

Malpractice Other PI/PD/WD (23)

Other Contract Dispute Real Property


Eminent Domain/Inverse

Premises Liability (e.g., slip


and fall)

Condemnation (14)

Miscellaneous Civil Complaint RICO (27)

Intentional Bodily InJury/PD/WD

Wrongful Eviction (33)

Other Complaint (not specified


above) (42)

(e.g., assault, vandalism)


Intentional Infliction of Emotional Distress

Other Real Property (e.g., quiet tide) (26)


Writ of Possession of Real Property Mortgage Foreclosure
Quiet Title

Declaratory Relief Only Injunctive Relief Only (nonharassment)


Mechanics Lien

Negligent Infliction of
Emotional Distress Other PI/PD/WD

Other Real Property (not eminent


domain, landlord/tenant, or foreclosure)
Unlawful Detainer

Other Commercial Complaint

Case (non-tortmon-complex)
Other Civil Complaint

Non-PI/PD/WD (Other) Tort


Business Tort/Unfair Business

(non-tort/hon-complex)
Miscellaneous CMI Petition

Practice (07)

Civil Rights (e.g., discrimination,


false arrest) (not civil harassment) (08)

Commercial (31) Residential (32)

Partnership and Corporate


Governance (21)

Defamation (e.g., slander, libel)


(13) Fraud (16) Intellectual Property (19)

Drugs (38) (ifthe case involves illegal drugs, check this item; otherwise, report as Commercial or Residential)
Judicial Review

Other Petition (nor specified


above) (43)
Civil Harassment

Asset Forfeiture (05)

8
h

Professional Negligence (25) Legal Malpractice Other Professional Malpractice (not medical or legal)
Other Non-PI/PD/WD Tort (35)

Petition Re: Arbitration Award (11) Writ of Mandate (02)


Writ-Administrative Mandamus

Workplace Violence Elder/Dependent Adult


Abuse Election Contest

Writ-Mandamus on Limited Court


Case Matter Writ-Other Limited Court Case
Review

Petition for Name Change


Petition for Relief From Late
Claim

> Employment

Other Civil Petition

WrongfulTermination (36) Other Employment (15)

Other Judicial Review (39)


Review of Health Officer Order

Notice of Appeal-Labor

Commissioner Appeals
CM-010|R*v. July 1.2007]

Paga 2 of 2

CIVIL CASE COVER SHEET

BC4614Q4
SHORT TITLE: CASE NUMBER

Gonzalez, et al. v. JP Morgan Chase, et al.

CIVIL CASE COVER SHEET ADDENDUM AND

STATEMENT OF LOCATION

(CERTIFICATE OF GROUNDS FOR ASSIGNMENT TO COURTHOUSE LOCATION)


This form is required pursuant to Local Rule 2.0 in all new civil case filings inthe Los Angeles Superior Court.
Item I. Check thelypes ofhearing andfill in the estimated length ofhearing exisected for this case:

JURY TRIAL? M YES CLASS ACTION? 0 YES LIMITED CASE? DyES TIME ESTIMATED FOR TRIAL 30 DHOURS/ B DAYS
item II. Indicate the correct district and courthouse location (4 steps- If you checked "Limited Case", skip to Item III, Pg. 4):

Step 1: After first completing the Civil Case Cover Sheet form, find the main Civil Case Cover Sheet heading for your
case in the left margin below, and, tothe right in Column A,the Civil Case Cover Sheet case type you selected.

Step 2:Check one Superior Court type of action in Column B below which best describes the nature of this case.
Step 3: In Column C, circle the reason for the court location choice that applies to the type of action you have
checked. Forany exception to the court location, see Local Rule 2.0.

Applicable Reasons for Choosing Courthouse Location (see Column C below)


2. May be filed incentral (other county, orno bodily Injury/property damage).
4. Location where bodily injury, death or damage occurred. 5. Location where performance required or defendant resides.
3. Location where cause of action arose.

1 Class actions must be filed in the Stanley Mosk Courthouse, central district.

6. Location of property or permanently garaged vehicle.


9. Location where one or more of the parties reside.
10. Location of Labor Commissioner Office

7. Location where petitioner resides. 8. Location wnerein defendant/respondent functions wholly.

Step 4: Fill in the information requested on page 4 in Item III; complete Item IV. Sign the declaration.
c Applicable Reasons See Step 3 Above
1,2,4.

A
Civil Case Cover Sheet

B
Type of Action (Check only one)

Category No. Auto (22)


Uninsured Motorist (46)

A7100 Motor Vehicle - Personal Injury/Property Damage/Wrongful Death

D A7110 Personal Injury/Property Damage/Wrongful Death - Uninsured Motorist


D A6070 Asbestos Property Damage

1..2..4.

2. 2.

Asbestos (04)

A7221 Asbestos - Personal Injury/Wrongful Death

Product Liability (24)


.

D A7260 Product Liability(not asbestos or toxic/environmental)


Q A7210 Medical Malpractice - Physicians & Surgeons
A7240 Other Professional Health Care Malpractice

1.,2..3.,4.,8. 1., 4.
1..4.

Medical Malpractice (45)

a!

Q
Other

A7250 Premises Liability (e.g.. slip and fall)


assault, vandalism, etc.)

1..4.

8 5

Personal Injury Property Damage

D A7230 Intentional Bodily Injury/PropertyDamage/Wrongful Death (e.g.,


D A7270 Intentional Infliction of Emotional Distress

1..4.

Wrongful Death
(23)

1,3.
1,4.

A7220 Other Personal Injury/Property Damage,Wrongful Death

LACIV 109 (Rev. 03/11)

LASC Approved 03-04

CIVIL CASE COVER SHEET ADDENDUM AND STATEMENT OF LOCATION

Local Rule 2.0

Page 1 of 4

SHORT TITLE:

CASE NUMBER

Gonzalez, et al. v. JP Morgan Chase, et al.


A
Civil Case Cover Sheet

"-" TypeTofAction
" (Check'bnlyone)
A6029 Other Commercial/Business Tort (not fraud/breach of contract)

Category No.
Business Tort (07)

Applicable Reasons See Step 3 Above


1., 3.

Civil Rights (08)

D A6005 Civil Rights/Discrimination


D A6010 Defamation (slander/libel)

1..2..3.
1 2., 3.

s
Defamation (13)
_C OS

.2.5

ll o 5
e-a
0_ |B

Fraud (16)

D A6013 Fraud (no contract)


O A6017 Legal Malpractice

1.,2., 3.
1 2.. 3.

Professional Negligence (25)

e
o

E
<o

D A6050 Other Professional Malpractice (not medical or legal)


D A6025 Other Non-Personal Injury/Property Damage tort

1.,2. 3.

Other (35) Wrongful Termination (36)

2.,3.

D A6037 Wrongful Termination


D A6024 Other Employment Complaint Case

1., 2 3.
1., 2., 3.
10.

o.

Other Employment (15)

A6109 Labor Commissioner Appeals

D A6004 Breach of Rental/Lease Contract (not unlawful detainer or wrongful


eviction)
Breach of Contract/ Warranty

2., 5.

(06) (not insurance)

D A6008 ConlractArVarranty Breach -Seller Plaintiff (no fraud/negligence)

2., 5.
1., 2., 5.

A6019 Negligent Breach of Contract/Warranty (no fraud)

D A6028 Other Breach of Contract/Warranty (not fraud or negligence)


D
c

12., 5.

A6002 Collections Case-Seller Plaintiff

2., 5., 6. 2,5. 12.,5.,8. 1..2..3., 5.

Collections (09)

D D
D

A6012 Other Promissory Note/Collections Cas A6015 Insurance Coverage (not complex)
A6009 Contractual Fraud

Insurance Coverage (18)

Other Contract (37)

A6031 Tortious Interference

1., 2.,3.,5.
1,2., 3-8.

D A6027 Other Contract Dispute(not breachflnsurance/fraud/negligence)


Eminent Domain/Inverse

Condemnation (14)
a>

A7300 Eminent Domain/Condemnation

Number of parcels

2.

a. o

Wrongful Eviction (33)

A6023 Wrongful Eviction Case

2,6. 2., 6.
2,6.

O A6018 Mortgage Foreclosure


a>

or

Other Real Property (26)

A6032 Quiet Title

D A6060 Other Real Property (not eminent domain, landlordAenant, foreclosure)


Unlawful Detainer-Commercial

2., 6.

(31)
Unlawful Detainer-Residential

A6021 Unlawful Detainer-Commercial (not drugs or wrongful eviction)


A6020 Unlawful Detainer-Residential (not drugu or wrongful eviction)
A6020F Unlawful Detainer-Post-Foreclosure

2., 6.

(32)
Unlawful Detainer-

2., 6.

Post-Foreclosure (34)

2., 6.

Unlawful Detainer-Drugs (38)

A6022 Unlawful Detainer-Drugs

2,6.

LACIV 109 (Rev. 03/11) LASC Approved 03-04

CIVIL CASE COVER SHEET ADDENDUM AND STATEMENT OF LOCATION

Local Rule 2.0

Page 2 of 4

SHORT TITLE:

Gonzalez, et al. v. JP Morgan Chase, et al.


A
Civil Case Cover Sheet

,.,

_.

CASE NUMBER

TypeofAction

. ''

.<

TSl'.^. ;'

M-r
SK;

c
Applicable Reasons See Step 3 Above
2., 6.
2., 5.
2.. 8.
2.
2.

Category No.
Asset Forfeiture (05)
D

(Check only one)


A6108 Asset Forfeiture Case

i
S
or:
to

Petition re Arbitration (11)

D A6115 Petition to Compel/Confirm/Vacate Arbitration


A6151 Writ - Administrative Mandamus

"5
->

Writ of Mandate (02)

O A6152 Writ - Mandamus on Limited Court Case Matter


D A6153 Writ - Other Limited Court Case Review

Other Judicial Review (39)

A6150 Other Writ/Judicial Review A6003 Antitrust/Trade Regulation


A6007 Construction Defect

2.. 8.

Antitrust/Trade Regulation (03) Construction Defect (10)

1..2.. 8.

O CO

1..2..3.

s
_i

Claims Involving Mass Tori


D.

(40)

13 A6006 Claims Involving Mass Tort D

1..2..8.

E
o

Securities Litigation (26)


Toxic Tort

A6035 Securities Litigation Case


A6036 Toxic Tort/Environmental

1..2.. 8.

c o

1., 2., 3.. 8.

'R

Environmental (30) Insurance Coverage Claims from Complex Case (41)

a.

Q A6014 Insurance Coverage/Subrogation (complexcase only)


D A6141 Sister State Judgment A6160 Abstract of Judgment

1., 2.. 5., 8.

2., 9. 26. 2,9.

-s
Enforcement

S
^ .2 UJ o

D A6107 Confession of Judgment (non-domestic relations)


A6140 Administrative Agency Award (not unpaid taxes)

of Judgment (20)

2., 8.
2,8.

D A6114 Petition/Certificate for Entry of Judgment on Unpaid Tax D A6112 Other Enforcement of Judgment Case
RICO (27)

2., 8., 9.

D A6033 Racketeering (RICO) Case


D A6030 Declaratory Relief Only

1.,2 8. 1., 2., 8.


2., 8.

4 jj E
8 o Other Complaints

D A6040 Injunctive Relief Only (not domestic/harassment)


D A6011 Other Commercial Complaint Case (non-tort/non-complex) D A6000 Other CivilComplaint (non-tort/non-complex)

(Not Specified Above) (42)

1., 2., 8. 1.. 2., 8.

5
Partnership Corporation Governance (21)

D A6113 Partnership and Corporate Governance Case


D A6121 Civil Harassment

2., 8.

2. 3.. 9.

2 O
a

= o
T& Other Petitions

A6123 Workplace Harassment

2., 3., 9. 2., 3., 9.


2.

A6124 Elder/Dependent Adult Abuse Case


A6190 Election Contest

.8 1

(Not Specified Above)


(43)

9- =
\

A6110 Petition for Change of Name


A6170 Petition for Relief from Late Claim Law
A6100 Other Civil Petition

2., 7. 2.. 3., 4., 8.


2.. 9.

LACIV 10S (Rev. 03/11)

LASC App roved 03-04

CIVIL CASE COVER SHEET ADDENDUM AND STATEMENT OF LOCATION

l ocal

Rule 2.0

Page 3 of 4

SHORT TITLE:

CASE NUMBER

Gonzalez, et al. v. JP Morgan Chase, et al.

Item III. Statement of Location: Enter the address of the accident, party's residence or place of business, performance, or other circumstance indicated in Item II., Step 3 on Page 1, asthe proper reason for filing in the court location you selected.
ADDRESS:

REASON: Check the appropriate boxes for the number* shown

3608 1/2 Adair Street

under Column C forthe type of action that you have selected for
this case.

01. 02. D3. D4. D5. D6. D7. 08. D9. D10.
CITY: STATE: ZIP CODE:

Los Angeles

CA

90011

Item IV. Declaration ofAssignment Ideclare under penalty of perjury under the laws ofthe State of California that the foregoing is true

and correct and that the above-entitled matter is properly filed for assignment to tire Stanley Mosk
Central
Rule 2.0, subds. (b), (c) and (d)).

courthouse in the

District of the Superior Court of California, County of Los Angeles [Code Civ. Proa, 392 etseq., and Local

Dated: May8, 2011


(SIGNATURE OF ATTORNEY/nijJteTARTY)

PLEASE HAVE THE FOLLOWING ITEMS COMPLETED AND READYTO BE: FILED INORDER TO PROPERLY
COMMENCE YOUR NEW COURT CASE:

1. Original Complaint or Petition.

2. If filing a Complaint, a completedSummonsform for issuance by the Clerk.


3. Civil Case Cover Sheet, Judicial Council form CM-010.

Civil Case Cover Sheet Addendum and Statement of Location form, LACIV 109, LASC Approved 03-04 (Rev. 03/11).

5. Payment in full of the filing fee, unless fees have been waived.

6. Asigned orderappointing the Guardian ad Litem, Judicial Council form CIV-010, if the plaintiff or petitioner is a
minor under 18 years of age will be required by Court in order to issue a summons.

7. Additional copies of documents to be conformed by the Clerk. Copiesof the cover sheet and this addendum must be served along with the summons and complaint, or other initiating pleading in the case.

yi

LACIV109 (Rev. 03/11)


LASC Approved 03-04

CIVIL CASE COVER SHEET ADDENDUM AND STATEMENT OF LOCATION

Local Rule 2.0

Page 4 of 4