Right to Rent will be extended across England In the first six months of the West Midlands Right...
Right to Rent will be extended across England
In the first six months of the West Midlands Right to Rent pilot scheme, 109 illegal immigrants were detected. Five civil penalty notices were issued to landlords or agents. Under the new 2015 Immigration Act, these penalties become criminal sanctions.
Just nine illegal immigrants had been removed from the UK, with a further five pending removal. Another nine had been ordered to report to Immigration Enforcement, but had failed to do so.
From 1st February 2016, it will be a legal requirement for landlords or their agents across England to check the immigration status of tenants. This means all private landlords, or their agents, in England, including those subletting or taking in lodgers, will have to check new tenants have the right to be in the UK before renting out their property.
Anyone who rents out private property in England will need to conduct Right to Rent checks on their adult tenants. This will involve making copies of evidence such as a passport or a biometric residence permit. In most cases, checks can be carried out without contacting the Home Office. However, if a tenant has an outstanding immigration application or appeal with the Home Office, landlords can request a Home Office Right to Rent check. A yes or no answer will be provided within two working days. Those who don’t make the checks could face a civil penalty of up to £3,000 per tenant if they are found to be renting out a property to someone who is in the UK illegally.
The Government is also making it easier for landlords to evict illegal migrants as part of the Immigration Bill.
The evalution report on the pilot scheme in the West Midlands can be viewed here