In a published decision the week of May 2, the Court of Appeals unanimously reversed the initial decision. The court first rejected the bank's assertion that the PTFA may be satisfied as long as 90 days had elapsed before an eviction is filed, even if less than 90 days' notice was given. The court held that the PTFA, by its express terms, "requires that a successor property owner provide a bona fide month-to-month tenant with a 90-day notice to vacate before terminating the tenancy, and the 90-day period must be completed before the notice’s effective date."
"Obviously, a five-day notice, even when followed by an unannounced 90-day delay, is at best misleading," the court explained. In addition, the court rejected the bank's argument that the PTFA notice may be oral, holding that "such an interpretation would be contrary to the express language of the law."
Community Legal Services of Arizona, along with the National Housing Law Project and a coalition of other organizations and law professors, filed amicus briefs in February in support of Ms. De Meo, who was represented pro se (without an attorney).
Our thanks to the National Housing Law Project for contributing this article.