From 1st of February 2016 landlords and letting agents must conduct checks of all tenants entering new tenancies to determine if they have the right to rent property in the UK. The onus is landlords and letting agents will need to keep comprehensive records as proof of carrying out these checks.
If the landlord or letting agent has failed to establish if the tenant has legal immigration status they can face hefty fines up to £3000 for per illegal occupant. The fine will be issued to the landlord until they can provide proof it was the letting agent’s responsibility to conduct the checks.
More information can be found in this useful guide here.
The list below shows which any one type of documentation can be acceptable to prove if the prospective tenant holds the right to rent (this is conditional to the tenant having permanent residence status):
- A British Passport (current or expired)
- A passport or national identity card showing holder is from Switzerland or a EEA* country
- A registration certificate or document (current or expired) certifying permanent residence issued by the Home Office, to a national of the EEA country or Switzerland.
- A ‘permanent’ residence card, ‘indefinite leave to remain’, ‘indefinite leave to enter’ or ‘no time limit’ card issued by the Home Office (current or expired), to a non-EEA national who is a family member of an EEA or Swiss national.
- A biometric ‘residence permit’ card (current or expired) issued by Home Office, indicating person named has ‘indefinite’ or ‘no time limit’ on their stay.
- A passport or other ‘travel document’ (current or expired) showing the holder is ‘exempt from immigration control’, or has ‘indefinite’ leave in the UK, has the ‘right of abode’ in the UK, or has ‘no time limit’ on their stay in the UK.
- An immigration status document (current or expired) containing a photograph issued by Home Office to the holder with an endorsement indicating that the named person has ‘indefinite’ leave in the UK or has ‘no time limit’ on their stay in the UK the UK or has no time limit on their stay in the UK.
- A certificate of registration or naturalisation as a British citizen.
If the prospective tenant does not have indefinite leave to stay in the UK then different documentation will be needed, this is covered in detail in the useful guide above.
Brady Solicitors are experienced in helping letting agents and landlords make the most of their property portfolios, if you have any AST related queries get in touch here or call us on 0115 985 3450.
*EEA- European Economic Area- Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Croatia, Republic of Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden and the UK.