If you are an "Unnamed Occupant" and the landlord wants to evict you:
If you are an "unnamed occupant" in an eviction lawsuit, and the landlord wins the unlawful detainer case, a sheriff cannot lawfully evict you if your name does not appear on the writ of possession. The landlord can take steps to avoid this result.
If the landlord DID take steps to evict you:
If you have been served with these three documents, you have 10 days to complete the Prejudgment Claim of Right to Possession form and file it with the Clerk of Court.
IMPORTANT: Any unnamed occupant who does not file a Prejudgment Claim of Right to Possession form with the Clerk of Court (along with the filing fee or a request for waiver of the fee) can then be evicted.
The court will then rule on your defense to the eviction along with the defenses of the other defendants. (See California Code of Civil Procedure, Section 1174.25)
If the landlord wins, you cannot delay the eviction, whether or not you are named in the "writ of possession" issued by the court. (See California Code of Civil Procedure, Section 415.46)
If the landlord DID NOT take steps to evict you:
If this is the case, when the sheriff arrives to enforce the "writ of possession" (that is, to evict the tenants) an occupant whose name does not appear on the writ of possession, and who claims a right of possession, may fill out a "Claim of Right to Possession" form and give it to the sheriff. The sheriff must then stop the eviction of that occupant, and must give the occupant a copy of the completed form or a receipt for it. (See California Code of Civil Procedure, Section 1174.3)
If you, the "Unnamed Occupant", gave the sheriff a "Claim of Right to Possession" form:
You also should deliver to the court an amount equal to 15 days' rent for the rental unit (the "writ of possession" must state the daily rental value of the rental unit).
5 to 15 days after you've paid the filing fee and deposited an amount equal to 15 days' rent, the court will hold a hearing.
At the hearing, the court will decide whether or not you have a valid claim to possession.
If the court finds that your claim to possession is not valid, an amount equal to the daily rent for each day the eviction was delayed will be subtracted from the rent that is returned to you, and the sheriff or marshal will continue with the eviction. (See California Code of Civil Procedure, Section 1174.3)
To view some short videos with general information about how California's court system works, click here.