Right to rent checks introduced for Landlords in England
From 1st February 2016, all private landlords in England will have to check new tenants have the right to be in the UK before renting out their property. Under the new rules, landlords who fail to check a potential tenant’s ‘Right to Rent’ will face penalties of up to £3,000 per tenant. The new law will mean that private landlords, including those who sub-let or take in lodgers, must check the right of prospective tenants to be in the country to avoid being hit with a penalty. Landlords should check identity documents for all new tenants and take copies. The scheme has been designed to make it straightforward for people to give evidence of their right to rent and a range of commonly available documents can be used. Acceptable documents include:
- UK passport
- EEA passport or identity card
- Home Office immigration status document
- Certificate of registration or naturalisation as a British citizen
- Permanent residence card or travel document showing indefinite leave to remain
Right to rent checks have been introduced as part of the government’s on-going reforms to the immigration system. If a potential tenant has an outstanding immigration application or appeal with the Home Office, landlords can conduct a check on that person’s ‘right to rent’ via the Landlords Checking Service.