Counsel, Advocacy & Representation for California Tenants

Schedule a Consultation with a Tenants Rights Attorney

Tenant Defenders allows you to automatically set your appointment to speak with an attorney.

Meet with a tenants rights attorney dedicated to advocating for renters.

It’s important for renters to get sound legal advice about their rights.  Tenant Defenders offers a variety of ways for tenants to set an appointment to meet with a tenants rights attorney. Learn how you can protect your interests with affordable legal help.

Tenants across the City of San Diego, and across California, have recently seen it is increasingly difficult to find suitable and affordable rental housing.  The Golden State has failed to meet the increased demand for rental housing, and it is much harder to buy a home today than in decades past.

More people are renting for the long term.   This has created a housing shortage, which means the housing supply is shrinking. Rents are increasing, and landlords are taking advantage.  It’s not a short term problem, and it’s not likely to change any time soon.  It has never been more important to assert and protect your tenant rights. 

Invest in your property rights. Protect them with professional legal assistance.

Effective resolution of legal problems require being prepared with options and knowledge.  Don’t settle for vague answers.  Get relevant counsel and advice from someone with years of courtroom experience and knows how to deal with landlord attorneys.  A consultation with an experienced attorney will give you insight and perspective.

Don't wait until you are going to court to speak with a lawyer.

Renters need to understand their rights and their options to protect their interests.  It is not enough to simply read about it online, or to settle for vague answers in a quick phone call.  Tenants have more legal options when they act early, and will have more possibilities at resolving disputes favorably.  Those that postpone getting the legal help they need often get backed into a corner.

An appointment over the telephone can usually be arranged more quickly than a meeting in person meeting. Each appointment is for 55 minutes.

Schedule a consultation

There are three options available for scheduling a consultation:


If you are interested in setting up a consultation concerning any aspect of your tenant rights, then we recommend you set a telephone appointment to speak with attorney Marc D. Whitham.  Attorney Whitham has been dedicated to exclusively representing and counseling California tenants since 2007.


If you have a case that involves a lot of documents, or a very long and detailed history, or you would just prefer to meet with your attorney face to face, then this is the option you should choose.  It may take a while longer to get an appointment, but the attorney you meet with will be a seasoned professional with many years of courtroom experience dedicated to helping tenants protect their rights.


If you have been served with an unlawful detainer summons, and know that you want attorney representation from the outset of your case, then this is the option you should select. During your consultation you will meet with the attorney who will handle your complete defense including available preliminary motions and litigation tactics. Additional fees after the initial consultation will apply.

Answer to Unlawful Detainer

If you have been sued in an unlawful detainer, served with a court summons, and would like attorney Whitham to prepare your answer to be filed in court, then select this option.  This is also a telephone appointment, which allows for maximum convenience and flexibility.  It is also the most economic option that allows you to obtain expert, professional legal advice, and to obtain an answer that we can file electronically in most jurisdictions across California.

*We are happy to discuss all the options available to you and the services that we can offer to meet your legal needs. These services will, in most cases, require the payment of additional fees.

Get Representation

If you have a situation that is more than a question, and are already having a dispute with your landlord, then information alone is often not enough to settle the matter to your advantage. What most renters need, but seldom have, is an attorney who knows the law, and the landlord’s duties under the law, and is not afraid to advocate for tenants.

Even the most informed tenants can find the court system overwhelming.  Defending against eviction on your own is more than just challenging.  Fort the unprepared and unrepresented it is an ordeal filled with traps.  Tenants who go to court without an attorney frequently enter into bad agreements and suffer humiliation at the hands of the landlord’s lawyers. Having an experienced attorney on your side will make a difference.

Get Informed

If your situation is not a lawsuit in court, but rather a question, or a curiosity about what the law says, there are many places where you can find educational materials, and  every tenant should become familiar with the legal protections for tenants in California law.

Many times the answer to tenants’ legal questions are more complicated than they may first appear.  It’s important to be careful, and not to rely upon every piece of information posted online, or simply accept the advice of friends and neighbors.  Make sure the source of your legal advice is reliable and up to date.

Look around the website and see if we have information to help you.  If you have a question and you can’t find an answer,  click here to send us a comment.  An attorney that specializes in advocating for tenants will reply, and can direct you to the resources you need. 

Don't go to Trial unprepared

Written notices demanding the payment of rent, notices that threaten the termination of your lease, accusations of illegal activity, and notices of changes in terms and conditions of a lease from a landlord or property manager are often the prelude to legal action.  They must be taken seriously.  It is critical for tenants to respond to notice from a landlord intelligently and prudently.

Before you agree to excessive rent increases, or allow the oppressive actions of the owner or management intimidate you, meet with a professional.

Information, early in time, is the key to success.  Often times becoming informed can help you to avoid being on defense.  If you are not able to avoid litigation, then consult with an attorney who stands with tenants and defends their rights.

Don't Waste Time

When a tenant has a legal conflict with the landlord, there is often only a short period of time to act.  Under California law, landlords are usually required to give notice to tenants before they resort to legal action. However, most of these legally required notices give a tenant only three days to act.  When a tenant fails to act within the three days then the landlord can proceed to court.

Once an action to evict (also called unlawful detainer) is filed against a tenant in court, it can move very quickly.   Landlords enjoy a unique legal procedure, which is known as a summary proceeding.   Once a tenant is sued in court, and then served with an unlawful detainer summons, then he or she has only five days to respond.

If your landlord has sued you or is threatening to sue you, then you must act quickly. Hesitation and uncertainty can lead to a loss of money, loss of security and the loss of your home. Don’t wait.  Schedule an appointment for a consultation  immediately to discuss your case.