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Right to Rent Checks

View profile for Andrew Morley
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Landlords today face a bewildering array of regulations. Many are centred around tenant safety and might be thought matters of common sense or good practice, but any breach could lead variously to a fine, compensation claim, a Prohibition Notice requiring remedial works to be undertaken, render any Notice Seeking possession ineffective against the tenant or even find the landlord behind bars.

With this in mind this regular series aims to highlight the main responsibilities the landlord has to contend with.

Right to Rent Checks  – before renting out a home all landlords are required to check the immigration status of their tenants and all adults who will be living in the property. Copies must be taken of passports or other official documents. A full list of acceptable documents can be found on the Gov.UK website. If the tenant cannot show a right to rent then the landlord cannot rent the property to them. If a right to rent check reveals a time limit on the right to remain in the UK then the landlord must carry out follow up checks and report to the Home Office if the right to rent has expired. If there is no right to rent the landlord must take steps to evict the tenant using the correct procedure laid down namely service of Notice and obtaining a Court Order. Special rules apply if it turns out that no-one in the household has the right to rent. The maximum penalties for landlords who transgress are 5 years imprisonment and an unlimited fine per illegal occupier. Landlords must be careful here not to fall foul of discrimination laws.

This Blog is written to raise awareness of these issues. While every effort has been made to ensure that it is correct at the time of first publication it may not be updated, even if the law changes. It is not intended to be specific legal advice and cannot be relied on as such. Chattertons are not responsible or liable for any action taken or not taken as a result of this Blog. If you think any of these matters affect you then we would be happy to advise.

Andrew Morley provides dispute resolution and residential landlord and tenant services from our Lincoln office.

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