McHale & Co. Solicitors Blog

Landlords Beware! Check your Tenant’s Right to Rent

From the 1st February 2016, Landlords in England are required to check their  tenants or lodgers are legally eligible to reside within the UK.

The government has introduced the new legal requirement for Private landlords in England to check via the Immigration Act 2014. 

The recent changes mean any Landlord found to be renting accommodation to someone who isn’t lawfully allowed to stay in the country, without having carried out the relevant checks required, can receive a hefty penalty of up to £3,000 per tenant.

So what checks are required under the legislation? Well, before the start of a new tenancy, the Landlord must make checks for tenants aged 18 or over.  This requirement is still required regardless of whether they are named on the tenancy agreement or whether a tenancy agreement exists at all.

A Landlord needs to make sure that;

1)      Any adult staying at the property will be using their property as their only or main home;

2)      That they request to see the tenant’s original documents showing they are eligible to live in the UK;

3)      Check the documents are genuine and belong to the tenant;

4)      And keep copies of the documents, recording the date of when the checks were carried out.

Should the tenant’s permission to stay be limited the Landlord will be required to make further checks either before the expiry date of the tenant’s right to stay or 12 months after the initial check.

It is important for Landlords to make sure that their procedures and tenancy agreements are in correct order to avoid falling foul of the recent changes, and incur eye watering penalties. This is especially true when dealing with letting agents or where a property is subletted.

If you are a private Landlord and want a no obligation discussion regarding any of the recent changes call us on 0161 928 3848 or email mch@mchaleandco.co.uk and one of our property experts will be able to assist you.

Categories: Conveyancing

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