• Renee S. Ramos Yamagishi

California Shall Not Fall ~ When a Small but Determined Few Will Build a Good Ship Together

Updated: Sep 16

"It is best to win without fighting."

Sun Tzu, The Art of War

What does a strategy map look like that alleviates the burden on our court staff in each county in the face of governor's woeful budget cuts to county services, while simultaneously a wave of anticipated eviction and foreclosure cases loom ahead during this time of national and state official declarations of emergency?

That strategy map is, allegorically, a blueprint for building a ship: seaworthy to carry CALIFORNIA HOMEOWNERS, TOGETHER WITH ALL MEMBERS OF OUR COURT PERSONNEL AND JUDICIAL OFFICERS who serve well in California, ELECTED LEGISLATORS and ELECTED COUNTY SHERIFFS , all on board one ship together, through a treacherous storm already on the horizon --- without breaking on the rocks and many drowning. Are we ready to build this boat in Alameda County? Otherwise, divided we fall.... but .... there is a light and a lighthouse -- can you see it?

California homeowners' and their families' despair and destitution of wrongful fraudulently-derived foreclosure evictions must be steered out and away from our already-over-burdened county courtrooms if only endless litigation is served there. Who is ready with us, instead to steer the new avalanche of foreclosures during the time of COVID --- into a new mandatory settlement process through a Special Emergency Judicial Tribunal (or at least a task force to spearhead forming such a body), informed by the Principles of Due Process, and the Intent of our Lawmakers. A body of several California homeowners are ready to come forward and do our part to help. The lighthouse was shrouded in fog but no more -- the times demand we are guided by its light.

For this specific area of law, i.e. to preserve California homeowner possession of primary residence dwelling during a state of emergency -- we must be informed by the EVIDENT INTENT OF OUR STATE LEGISLATURE IN ENACTING the California Homeowners' Bill of Rights in 2013 and renewed and operative in 2018.

If enforced by judicial and executive practices in California, CalHBOR-compliant policy AIMED TOWARDS SETTLEMENT and STEERED AWAY FROM BURDENSOME COMPLEX LITIGATION will definitely carry California homeowners into solutions opposite those adverse claimants, rather than eviction and dispossession of our people's primary residence dwellings --- those who agree that we want people to RETAIN THEIR HOMES in California become stakeholders.


Homeowners can't build a Special Judicial Tribunal alone - we can seek arbitration one at a time, separated and uncoordinated, but that won't stop the rising tide of woe. Instead we call on California key players for a coordinated game plan. We see there is more to gain from creating something new than fighting forever with our courts. "IT IS BEST TO WIN WITHOUT FIGHTING."

And ....homeowners are human. Some are overwhelmed by the dilemma juggling too much as it is especially during this pandemic-infused era and very real economic pressure. For some insurmountably so... and we should prevent the tragedies in the wake of such utter devastation. Now is the time to steer that justifiable outrage and anger from toxic festering into productive service -- for everyone's good.

This is a PREVENTABLE tragedy, and we need a map, a blueprint, a compass, a clock, and THE WILL. We don't need a majority of each body-politic to see it and jump on board to build it. In fact we need only a few dedicated exceptionally informed people in several areas of getting things done. Who care whether anyone sees them doing it or not.

Some homeowners who have lost so much feel so pained, so aggrieved, bereft with not much more to lose, that many of us fear the social upheaval in the wake of having no seaworthy ship leaves our counties and California as a whole a breeding ground for malfeasance mired in misery -- that is the backlash from injustice rather than justice rendered, at the hands of, no less a "routinized deprivation of human rights" by our own elected and appointed officials? This will ruin California! Do we not see it already ruined in so many areas? Will we fix it or let ruination sweep like a typhoon over us all?

Can you see that when homeowners are part of the policy and procedure, we will finally have solutions to wrongful foreclosure litigation-alternatives? We do. We are CREATIVE YET REALISTIC PEOPLE - how else could we have weathered this many years in our own small boats, assisting one another as we go? Those who have the most to contribute are kind of special .... we are mostly over fifty-five but still young enough to get a lot done. Budget is part of our planning - let's cooperate instead of compete for federal funds.

The nation and our highly-populated state must respond the an imperative: Keep California homeowners housed during this national emergency and well into full recovery. Are we asking who should sit at that policy and planning committee TO ACTUALLY GET THE JOB DONE? Do we have that spearhead group who can speak fluent "lawful negotiated foreclosure-prevention"? How can California show up ready to IMPLEMENT WITH SUCCESS THE INTENT OF THE PRESIDENTIAL EXECUTIVE ORDER passed recently -- which is that homeowners and tenants remain SHELTERED in their basic human right to stay in possession of current dwelling during this time of national and state public health emergency. Presidential Executive Order during a national emergency is appropriate, and it is LAW OF THE LAND.

Blueprint sketch (draft outline, subject to collaboration, editing, revision, discussion - A TEAM OF DESIGNERS NEEDED -- are you ready to come to the table? --

BACKGROUND: We live in a constitutional republic, a nation of laws: a California homeowner who has had a "trustee's deed" recorded against her primary residence dwelling has reached the "standing" under Civil Code Section 2924.12(b). She then becomes the "inevitable unlawful detainer defendant" a mere couple of weeks later. CLEARLY OUR LEGISLATORS REALIZED THIS, i.e. one and the same California homeowner is wearing two hats at once: First she gains 2924.12b STANDING, and second she becomes that inevitable UD defendant. She wears BOTH. Whether the UD plaintiff or the UD court sees both - she does not waive her standing reached by the intent of her California legislature in CalHBOR.

Nor should she waive her CIV 2924.12(b) standing granted her by governing law in California, which is in harmony with Amendment 5 and 14 of the Constitution -- and no governmental body shall infringe the unalienable right of that California homeowner.

  • Claims her right to enforce the INTENT OF HER OWN STATE LEGISLATURE IN CALIFORNIA, a California homeowner's right to defend INCLUDES her right to due process to have her "CIV 2924.12(b)" grievances heard and tried which is her "standing" after trustee sale has completed. Meanwhile the foreclosure buyer sues for a writ of eviction based on "CCP 1161a(b)(3)" against her, believing instead that it should be awarded possession of her home and dwelling instead of her.

  • How does homeowner defend in "UD" from her rights as that "2924.12b" standing-reached homeowner? The short answer is "She can't - it's not allowed in a "summary proceeding" to try that level of complexity and to try dispute over title ownership.

  • There's more to it, but California Unlawful Detainer court is designed for Landlord-Tenant eviction processes, not long complex trials over title ownership rights; and the Judge's Benchguide from the 2015 Judicial Council of California cites to case opinions and admits in many places throughout that the publication: concluding that due process rights for the homeowner are a problem. We say due process is denied, and we do not consent. Our constitution compels us duty-bound to raise the grievance.

  • The trustee sale winning bidder who becomes the plaintiff in California Unlawful Detainer ("UD") court has a set of claims and has thrown the first ball, which "slams in through our front window shattering glass everywhere, right onto our dining room table." California homeowners will volley, we will defend our homes and our rights, so let us have a FAIR FIGHT: this UD court is much too small and improper for homeowner to play --- WE CRY FOUL: UNFAIR ADVANTAGE, NOT A LEGITIMATE CONTEST.

  • "Let's have your game and mine in a court where our back and forth volley is a fair fight." Translation: a court of law and equity - or some other lawful tribunal - who has subject matter jurisdiction and whose final disposition of the controversy is both lawful and binding. PEOPLE NEED CONTRACTS, LAW AND ORDER. Otherwise we have rogue and unresolved conflict fanning flames of discontent -- NOT the conditions for any sustainable community.

  • But rather than the "UD apparatus" ADMITTING the controversy is too "big" for it's jurisdiction, the standard operating procedure is that "UD" effectively "usurps and steals" the jurisdiction over the homeowner's true legal position and issues a "summary judgement" anyway.

  • Rather than force her to wrestle a procedural monster and/or be forced to become a plaintiff to bring a completely separate action in the over-burdened regular unlimited superior courts --- let's first agree that the Intent of the Legislature and of our constitution of both California and of the united states of America are in perfect agreement that DUE PROCESS BEFORE DISPOSSESSION OF PROPERTY is her right by law!

  • AB828 (pending (stalled?) at State of CA Senate Judiciary Committee); and HR7301 (also pending and stalled at the Senate for federal policy) -- both express the intent of the legislatures in CA and federally; for a complete MORATORIUM on all forward movement in foreclosure activity. But proposals with no passage into law are empty.

  • AB3088 holds sweeping protection for tenants but effectively nothing for homeowners, but nothing substantial for homeowners to enjoy anything remotely effectively as a moratorium.

  • Meanwhile we do have current, operational and governing law: California Homeowners' Bill of Rights. We have a great tool chest - let's learn how to use it together. Our lawmakers did their job - now its the JUDICIARY'S TURN. We have confidence in our Judicial Council of California -- who realize that changing laws and mounting pressures mandate cure to confusing inconsistencies or gaps in procedure where people fall through and get hurt that result. We want to be confident too that EXECUTIVE and law enforcement- specifically our County Sheriffs -- wish to see a win-win that keeps their constituent homeowners housed not made homeless!

  • California - Homeowners for Due Process is here to work WITH all branches of government in the State of California.

When the navigation gear goes out, we've learned to read the stars.....

Who else besides the several of us with our sleeves rolled up, can see under the light of reason, this newly-birthing Special Emergency Judicial Tribunal? Who can see the great wisdom of taking advantage of our our experience and expertise, to assist homeowners and convince them it is best to "win without fighting?" Homeowners do not choose to become accidental lawyers at such great sacrifice -- we are people who have lives to live! And we need stable home to live our lives. We know there is fear even panic, pain and anguish, a long story to tell .... but we have learned to "soldier up" and keep it short and plain - to get to the point and then devise the strategy to implement. WE CAN AND DO ALREADY COACH HOMEOWNERS to stay calm, to organize their writing and papers -- so we can ASSIST JUDICIAL STAFF, Mediators, Arbitrators, Advocates, Coaches, Counselors and family-community to best support that homeowner fighting to keep their home in California.