California Tenants Entitled to Information About Bed Bugs

California landlords may not offer for lease a rental that is actively infested with bedbugs.

By , Attorney | Updated by Janet Portman, Attorney

Starting July 1, 2017, California law requires landlords to give prospective tenants information on bed bug identification and control, including the ways in which tenants can alert landlords to a bedbug problem. The same information must be given to all tenants as of January 1, 2018. (Calif. Civil Code Sec. 1954.603.) Nolo has prepared a "Bed Bug Information Sheet" for California landlords, which includes the identification material required by the new law. You you can also access and download this form by clicking the "Download Forms" link on the companion page for Nolo's The California Landlord's Law Book: Rights & Responsibilities.

The new law makes it illegal for landlords to show or rent a vacant unit that has an active infestation. Nor may landlords retaliate against tenants who report a bed bug problem. When landlords hire a pest control company to inspect, the landlord must share the findings with tenants within two days.

Importantly, the law requires that tenants cooperate in their landlords' eradication efforts: "Tenants shall cooperate with the inspection to facilitate the detection and treatment of bed bugs, including providing requested information that is necessary to facilitate the detection and treatment of bed bugs to the pest control operator." (Calif. Civil code Sec. 1954.604.)