Law Office of  JANET FOGARTY 



Landlord -Tenant Regulations are changing.  If you have residential rentals, there are new State laws that require special notification to tenants as to whether their lease is exempt from Just Cause Eviction and Rent Increase Regulations.  These laws are effective now. Contact us to determine if you may be exempt, and for the forms you may need.

Covid-19 related Landlord-Tenant Regulations are in effect now.  Residential regulations were just extended by the Board of Supervisors in San Mateo County until the end of August. This may change again depending on what happens with the pandemic.  The County of San Mateo has also enacted regulations in County areas prohibiting eviction of commercial tenants if they certify they have been impacted by Covid-19. Some cities in San Mateo County have adopted similar regulations, and some have not.  The City and County of San Francisco has adopted more stringent regulations still.  Depending upon the location of the rental premises, different regulations may apply.  Contact us for information regarding your specific property.  These regulations are changing weekly, so be sure you have up-to-date info before taking action with your tenants or with your landlord.

In Myrick v. Mastagni (2010 DJDAR 9270), decided June 21, 2010, Owners of rental property were found liable for negligence for failing to seismically retrofit their building in Paso Robles, when two women were killed when a portion of the building collapsed on them during a 2003 earthquake, even though the owners did not need to comply with the city's retrofit ordinance until 2018.  The court found that, since they were aware that the building did not conform to seismic safety requirements, they should have taken action to correct the problem regardless of the city ordinance.  The families of the victims were awarded nearly $2,000,000.  The Court held the owners to be jointly and severally liable despite the fact that only one owner managed the property.     The lesson to be learned:  "The basic rule of tort liability for property owners is that an owner must use ordinary care in the management of his or her property to prevent injury to another. (Civil Code sec. 1714) The test is whether an owner has acted as a reasonable person in view of the probability of injury. [Citation omitted.] "   

Our advice to property owners in light of this recent case: If you are aware of a health or safety issue with your rental property, or with common area property which you manage, do not wait to get it handled.  Even if you have time remaining in which to comply with health and safety ordinances or laws, that fact will not insulate you from liability should someone be hurt because you delayed, or you allowed the manager to delay,  in fixing the problem.  Also, if you are a co-owner, and the other co-owner manages the property, you need to take action to see that any repairs are made within a reasonable time, because you may be held jointly and severally liable merely from the fact of your ownership of an interest in the property.


My Mom moved to the Bay Area from Los Angeles.  She needed to update her Trust and Will.  I called my friend and fellow Rotarian, Janet Fogarty from the Rotary Club of Millbrae who is an Attorney to help me.  She quickly set up a meeting with my Mom and I and helped us update my Mom's Trust and Will.
This is what my 87 year old Mom said about Janet:
"She's such a nice person, so calm and very smart.  She explained everything to me so I could understand what needed to be done.  You meet the nicest people when you are a Rotarian."  Yes Mom... you certainly do! 
Thank you Janet for making a hard task easy and painless for my Mom!
Jeri Fujimoto/Beatrice Fujimoto

“Janet is always my first line of legal advice - well before I need any defense! I've found her in every single case to be complete, proficient, creative, accessible and knowledgeable. She finds every t to cross, every i to dot and draws very clear pictures when she explains potential consequences. I have benefited over and over from her patient explanations and kind encouragement of my own input. I cannot recommend Janet too highly.”
Top Qualities: Great Results, Expert, High Integrity
Steven Burgess
Hired Janet in 1991, and hired Janet more than once

One of the best attorneys with whom I have had the pleasure of working is Janet Fogarty.  I came to her in desperation regarding trusts and a shopping center dispute.  She listened patiently to my narrative, took notes and quietly stated she'd take me as a client.  Working on these issues over the course of the last 2 years has been one of frustration, setbacks and successes.
But due to Janet's patience, legal knowledge and reflection we eventually solved these cases in my favor.  Janet, a quiet gracious woman wielding the sword of reason and justice for her clients.  I will rue the day she retires!
Linda McLaughlin

“Janet is one of the finest people I've worked with in my 30 year real estate career, I cannot recommend her highly enough, as both a colleague and attorney! Janet and I worked on several very difficult and involved real estate investment partnerships over five years that required lengthy due diligence, letters of intent, and detailed ownership and real estate legal documents. She persevered through simultaneous negotiations with lenders, title companies, owners and investors, some living overseas. Janet's ability to understand everyone's interest, both business and legal, brought the transactions to a smooth closing within the deadlines every time. To this day I marvel at her patience. Active in her community affairs and a former mayor of Millbrae, she is also an expert at working with local planning commissions, zoning boards and city councils, as well as various State of California agencies. She is also a long-time member of Soroptomist International of San Bruno-Millbrae. Janet goes the extra step for her clients; she takes an interest in other projects and activities, and will dig into her rolodex for referrals where others might assist. Work with her if you get the chance!” 
Philip Clock , Owner, Pacific First Group
Hired Janet when working with another company 

Disclaimer:  Testimonials and endorsements do not consitute a guarantee, warranty, or prediction regarding the outcome of your legal matter.

1001 Broadway, Suite 200
Millbrae, CA 94030

(650) 652-5601
(650) 652-5604 FAX