Code of the District of Columbia

§ 42–3651.02. Grounds for appointment of a receiver.

(a)(1) A receiver may be appointed if a rental housing accommodation has been cited by the Department of Consumer and Regulatory Affairs for a violation of chapters 1 through 16 of Title 14 of the District of Columbia Municipal Regulations or Title 12 of the District of Columbia Municipal Regulations, or its equivalent, which violation poses a serious threat to the health, safety, or security of the tenants; and

(2) The owner, agent, lessor, or manager has been properly notified of the violation but has failed timely to abate the violations; provided, that proper notification shall be deemed to have been effected if a copy of the notice has been served pursuant to applicable law or rule, or as follows:

(A) By personal service on the property owner, lessor, or manager or the agent thereof;

(B) By delivering the notice to the last known home or business address of the property owner, lessor, manager, or agent as identified by the tax records, business license records, or business entity registration records, and leaving it with a person over 16 years of age residing or employed therein;

(C) By mailing the notice, via first-class mail postage prepaid, to the last known home or business address of the property owner, lessor, manager, or agent as identified by the tax records, business license records, or business entity registration records; or

(D) If the notice is returned as undeliverable by the post office authorities, or if no address is known or can be ascertained from the District’s tax, business license, or business entity registration records, by posting a copy of the notice in a conspicuous place in or about the structure affected by such notice.

(b) A receiver may also be appointed if a rental housing accommodation has been operated in a manner that demonstrates a pattern of neglect for the property for a period of 30 consecutive days and such neglect poses a serious threat to the health, safety, or security of the tenants.

(c) For purposes of this section, the term:

(1) "Pattern of neglect" includes evidence that the owner, agent, lessor, or manager of the rental housing accommodation has maintained the premises in a state of disrepair that constitutes a serious threat to the health, safety, or security of the tenants or to the public.

(2) "Serious threat to the health, safety, or security of the tenants" includes violations that involve:

(A) Vermin or rat infestation;

(B) Filth or contamination;

(C) Inadequate ventilation, illumination, sanitary, heating or life safety facilities;

(D) Inoperative fire suppression or warning equipment;

(E) Inoperative doors or window locks; or

(F) Any other condition that constitutes a hazard to tenants, occupants or the public.


(Apr. 27, 2001, D.C. Law 13-281, § 502, 48 DCR 1888; Oct. 19, 2002, D.C. Law 14-213, § 32(c), 49 DCR 8140; Mar. 21, 2009, D.C. Law 17-319, § 5(a), 56 DCR 214; Mar. 16, 2021, D.C. Law 23-207, § 2(b), 67 DCR 13899.)

Section References

This section is referenced in § 42-3651.03, § 42-3651.04, and § 42-3651.05.

Effect of Amendments

D.C. Law 14-213, in par. (1), validated a previously made technical correction.

D.C. Law 17-319 rewrote the section.

Emergency Legislation

For temporary (90 day) amendment, see § 5(a) of Abatement of Nuisance Properties and Tenant Receivership Emergency Amendment Act of 2008 (D.C. Act 17-420, July 8, 2008, 55 DCR 7703).

For temporary (90 day) amendment of section, see § 5(a) of Abatement of Nuisance Properties and Tenant Receivership Congressional Review Emergency Amendment Act of 2008 (D.C. Act 17-563, October 27, 2008, 55 DCR 12019).

Temporary Legislation

Section 5(a) of D.C. Law 17-237 amended this section to read as follows:

“Sec. 502. Grounds for appointment of a receiver.

“(a)(1) A receiver may be appointed if a rental housing accommodation has been cited by the Department of Consumer and Regulatory Affairs for a violation of chapters 1 through 16 of Title 14 of the District of Columbia Municipal Regulations or Title 12 of the District of Columbia Municipal Regulations, or its equivalent, which violation poses a serious threat to the health, safety, or security of the tenants; and

“(2) The owner, agent, lessor, or manager has been properly notified of the violation but has failed timely to abate the violations; provided, that proper notification shall be deemed to have been effected if a copy of the notice has been served pursuant to applicable law or rule, or as follows:

“(A) By personal service on the property owner, lessor, or manager or the agent thereof; or

“(B) By delivering the notice to the last known home or business address of the property owner, lessor, manager, or agent as identified by the tax records, business license records, or business entity registration records, and leaving it with a person over 16 years of age residing or employed therein; or

“(C) By mailing the notice, via first-class mail postage prepaid, to the last known home or business address of the property owner, lessor, manager, or agent as identified by the tax records, business license records, or business entity registration records; or

“(D) If the notice is returned as undeliverable by the post office authorities, or if no address is known or can be ascertained from the District’s tax, business license, or business entity registration records, by posting a copy of the notice in a conspicuous place in or about the structure affected by the notice.

“(b) A receiver may also be appointed if a rental housing accommodation has been operated in a manner that demonstrates a pattern of neglect for the property for a period of 30 consecutive days and such neglect poses a serious threat to the health, safety, or security of the tenants. For the purposes of this subsection, the term ”pattern of neglect“ includes all evidence that the owner, agent, lessor, or manager of the rental housing accommodation has maintained the premises in a serious state of disrepair including, vermin or rat infestation, filth or contamination, inadequate ventilation, illumination, sanitary, heating or life safety facilities, inoperative fire suppression or warning equipment, or any other condition that constitutes a hazard to its occupants or to the public.”.

Section 8(b) of D.C. Law 17-237 provided that the act shall expire after 225 days of its having taken effect.