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Appealing Administrative and Hearing Decisions

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Administrative decisions are made by the Department when it processes applications for exemptions, for waivers of registrations fee penalties, reregistration forms and other applications and forms submitted to the department.

When the Department processes the application or form, it sends out a notice to the landlord - and for certain processes to the tenant. The notice tells the affected parties that they have a certain number of days depending on the process involved to appeal the result.

If a landlord or tenant want to appeal, they must obtain an appeals form from the Department. They must fill out the form listing the false or misleading information that caused the Department to process the forms incorrectly and attach any documents that provide the correct information. The appellant must serve all affected parties with copies of the appeal form before they file it with the City (for example, a tenant appealing the determination of what the initial rent for a re-registered unit, would have to serve the landlord with the form first). Then the appeals form must be submitted to the Department by the day listed in the Department's decision notice. The appeal must be filed with the Department during normal business hours. The appellant must pay a filing fee (currently $25) at that time.

The Department Director takes the appeal into cosideration. Any affected persons may submit further documents or written statements within ten business dates of being served with the appeal form. The Director will make a decision within fourteen days after the period for submitting written statements and documents has ended. The decision of the director will be final.

Appeal of Hearing Examiners' Decisions

The result of most hearings may be appealed to the City's Rent Stabilization Commission, a 5-member decision-making body appointed by the City Council.

Both tenants and landlords may appeal the decision in any hearings case to which they are a party. An appeal should be filed only if you believe that the decision:

  • Is not supported by the evidence presented at the hearing;
  • Resulted from an abuse of discretion by the Hearing Examiner;
  • Is in violation of the Ordinance or State Law; or
  • Is clearly in error.

The appeal must be filed using a form available from the Department, no later than the date given in the Notice of Determination or the Notice of Compliance Determination. The person filing the appeal must serve the entire appeal to all other affected parties (landlord and tenants) before filing it with the Department. An appeals fee must be paid at the time of filing. Currently this is $25 for decrease case decisions and $65 to appeal an increase case decision.

The Rent Stabilization Commission hears and decides all appeals of the Hearing Examiner's decisions. As with Hearings, Commission meetings are open to the public. A schedule of Commission meetings and a list of agenda items can be obtained from the Rent Stabilization and Housing Department, as well as a booklet outlining the Rent Stabilization appeals process.

For more information about decrease and increase hearings, check the Decrease and Increase Hearings FAQs

For specific information on the appeal process contact the Rent Stabilization and Housing Department at (323) 848-6450.