(a) On and after January 1, 1986, every single-family dwelling and factory-built housing, as defined in Section 19971, which is sold shall have an operable smoke alarm. At the time of installation, the alarm shall be approved and listed by the State Fire Marshal and installed in accordance with the State Fire Marshal’s regulations. Unless prohibited by local rules, regulations, or ordinances, a battery-operated smoke alarm that met the standards adopted pursuant to Section 13114 for smoke alarms at the time of installation shall be deemed to satisfy the requirements of this section.
(b) On and after January 1, 1986, the transferor of any real property containing a single-family dwelling, as described in subdivision (a), whether the transfer is made by sale, exchange, or real property sales contract, as defined in Section 2985 of the Civil Code, shall deliver to the transferee a written statement indicating that the transferor is in compliance with this section. The disclosure statement shall be either included in the receipt for deposit in a real estate transaction, an addendum attached thereto, or a separate document.
(c) The transferor shall deliver the statement referred to in subdivision (b) as soon as practicable before the transfer of title in the case of a sale or exchange, or prior to execution of the contract where the transfer is by a real property sales contract, as defined in Section 2985. For purposes of this subdivision, “delivery” means delivery in person or by mail to the transferee or transferor, or to any person authorized to act for him or her in the transaction, or to additional transferees who have requested delivery from the transferor in writing. Delivery to the spouse of a transferee or transferor shall be deemed delivery to a transferee or transferor, unless the contract states otherwise.
(d) This section does not apply to any of the following:
(1) Transfers which are required to be preceded by the furnishing to a prospective transferee of a copy of a public report pursuant to Section 11018.1 of the Business and Professions Code.
(2) Transfers pursuant to court order, including, but not limited to, transfers ordered by a probate court in the administration of an estate, transfers pursuant to a writ of execution, transfers by a trustee in bankruptcy, transfers by eminent domain, or transfers resulting from a decree for specific performance.
(3) Transfers to a mortgagee by a mortgagor in default, transfers to a beneficiary of a deed of trust by a trustor in default, transfers by any foreclosure sale after default, transfers by any foreclosure sale after default in an obligation secured by a mortgage, or transfers by a sale under a power of sale after a default in an obligation secured by a deed of trust or secured by any other instrument containing a power of sale.
(4) Transfers by a fiduciary in the course of the administration of a decedent’s estate, guardianship, conservatorship, or trust.
(5) Transfers from one coowner to one or more coowners.
(6) Transfers made to a spouse, or to a person or persons in the lineal line of consanguinity of one or more of the transferors.
(7) Transfers between spouses resulting from a decree of dissolution of a marriage, from a decree of legal separation, or from a property settlement agreement incidental to either of those decrees.
(8) Transfers by the Controller in the course of administering the Unclaimed Property Law provided for in Chapter 7 (commencing with Section 1500) of Title 10 of Part 3 of the Code of Civil Procedure.
(9) Transfers under the provisions of Chapter 7 (commencing with Section 3691) or Chapter 8 (commencing with Section 3771) of Part 6 of Division 1 of the Revenue and Taxation Code.
(e) No liability shall arise, nor any action be brought or maintained against, any agent of any party to a transfer of title, including any person or entity acting in the capacity of an escrow, for any error, inaccuracy, or omission relating to the disclosure required to be made by a transferor pursuant to this section. However, this subdivision does not apply to a licensee, as defined in Section 10011 of the Business and Professions Code, where the licensee participates in the making of the disclosure required to be made pursuant to this section with actual knowledge of the falsity of the disclosure.
(f) Except as otherwise provided in this section, this section shall not be deemed to create or imply a duty upon a licensee, as defined in Section 10011 of the Business and Professions Code, or upon any agent of any party to a transfer of title, including any person or entity acting in the capacity of an escrow, to monitor or ensure compliance with this section.
(g) No transfer of title shall be invalidated on the basis of a failure to comply with this section, and the exclusive remedy for the failure to comply with this section is an award of actual damages not to exceed one hundred dollars ($100), exclusive of any court costs and attorney’s fees.
(h) Local ordinances requiring smoke alarms in single-family dwellings may be enacted or amended. However, the ordinances shall satisfy the minimum requirements of this section.
(i) For the purposes of this section, “single-family dwelling” includes a one- or two-unit dwelling, but does not include a manufactured home as defined in Section 18007, a mobilehome as defined in Section 18008, or a commercial coach as defined in Section 18001.8.
(Amended by Stats. 2012, Ch. 420, Sec. 2. (SB 1394) Effective January 1, 2013.)
Last modified: October 25, 2018