Assembly Bill 983 Fails To Pass
The California Self Storage Association (CSSA) and the national Self Storage Association (SSA) have recently made efforts to update the self-storage lien law in the state of California. Their proposed update to the law, Assembly Bill 983 was blocked by the Senate Judiciary Committee.
The associations looked to change procedures if a defaulted tenant invokes a declaration of opposition to a lien sale.
Currently, if a tenant invokes such a declaration, the self-storage operator must seek a court order to proceed with the lien process. The provision is one that is unique to the state of California's lien law, and the associations were working to place the court-filing burden on the delinquent tenant within 30 days of returning such a declaration.
Storage operators in the state are unhappy with the current procedure, because a high percentage of the tenant who return such a declaration don't end up showing up for the requested hearing. The CSSA hoped that by changing the laws, only tenants who had legally relevant reasons for executing the form would return the forms, making it more likely that they would appear at the hearing if they initiated the lawsuit.
The bill appeared to have positive traction earlier in the year, but after a bill analysis from a committee consultant, concerns were raised over shifting the burden of the lawsuit to tenant, including creating hardships for the tenant.
Another switch in support came from Ellen M. Corbett, Senate majority leader who had previously supported the measure, but then began to lobby against the bill.
In the end, there was not sufficient support for the bill to be passed within the committee.
"The judiciary committee action was a very disappointing outcome,” said Erin King, CSSA executive director. “We thought the bill was well on its way to passing, and to have it turned down in such a manner really had us scratching our heads. However, we’ll keep trying to find ways to work with our legislators to bring about positive changes for our industry.”
Although the committee voted down the bill, it granted reconsideration, meaning the CSSA and SSA could still pursue amending the current legislation and plan to do so, with the earliest possible changes to the bill being enacted in 2014.
Source Information: California Self-Storage Lien-Law Update Blocked by Senate Judiciary Committee
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