(a) For purposes of this section, “hotel” means any hotel, motel, bed and breakfast inn, or other similar transient lodging establishment, but it does not include any residential hotel as defined in Section 50519 of the Health and Safety Code. “Innkeeper” means the owner or operator of a hotel, or the duly authorized agent or employee of the owner or operator.
(b) For purposes of this section, “handbill” means, and is specifically limited to, any tangible commercial solicitation to guests of the hotel urging that they patronize any commercial enterprise.
(c) Every person (hereinafter “distributor”) engages in unfair competition for purposes of this chapter who deposits, places, throws, scatters, casts, or otherwise distributes any handbill to any individual guest rooms in any hotel, including, but not limited to, placing, throwing, leaving, or attaching any handbill adjacent to, upon, or underneath any guest room door, doorknob, or guest room entryway, where either the innkeeper has expressed objection to handbill distribution, either orally to the distributor or by the posting of a sign or other notice in a conspicuous place within the lobby area and at all points of access from the exterior of the premises to guest room areas indicating that handbill distribution is prohibited, or the distributor has received written notice pursuant to subdivision (e) that the innkeeper has expressed objection to the distribution of handbills to guest rooms in the hotel.
(d) Every person (hereinafter “contractor”) engages in unfair competition for purposes of this chapter who causes or directs any other person, firm, business, or entity to distribute, or cause the distribution of, any handbill to any individual guest rooms in any hotel in violation of subdivision (c) of this section, if the contractor has received written notice from the innkeeper objecting to the distribution of handbills to individual guest rooms in the hotel.
(e) Every contractor who causes or directs any distributor to distribute, or cause the distribution of, any handbills to any individual guest rooms in any hotel, if the contractor has received written notice from the innkeeper or from any other contractor or intermediary pursuant to this subdivision, objecting to the distribution of handbills to individual guest rooms in the hotel has failed to provide a written copy of that notice to each distributor prior to the commencement of distribution of handbills by the distributor or by any person hired or retained by the distributor for that purpose, or, within 24 hours following the receipt of the notice by the contractor if received after the commencement of distribution, and has failed to instruct and demand any distributor to not distribute, or to cease the distribution of, the handbills to individual guest rooms in any hotel for which such a notice has been received is in violation of this section.
(f) Any written notice given, or caused to be given, by the innkeeper pursuant to or required by any provision of this section shall be deemed to be in full force and effect until such time as the notice is revoked in writing.
(g) Nothing in this section shall be deemed to prohibit the distribution of a handbill to guest rooms in any hotel where the distribution has been requested or approved in writing by the innkeeper, or to any individual guest room when the occupant thereof has affirmatively requested or approved the distribution of the handbill during the duration of the guest’s occupancy.
(Added by Stats. 1999, Ch. 354, Sec. 1. Effective January 1, 2000.)
Last modified: October 25, 2018