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Right To Rent landlord fines to be massively increased

Landlords who allow rental properties to be let to migrants who do not have the right to be in the UK will face much larger financial penalties in future.

Landlords and agents who knowingly rent their properties to unauthorised migrants will face penalties of up to £5,000 per lodger and £10,000 per occupier for a first breach, up from £80 and £1,000 respectively.

Repeat breaches could cost them up to £10,000 per lodger, up from £500, and a maximum of £20,000 per occupier, up from £3,000.

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It is thought laws to enforce the fines will be enacted early in 2024.

Immigration minister Robert Jenrick says: "Making it harder for illegal migrants to work and operate in the UK is vital to deterring dangerous, unnecessary small boat crossings. Unscrupulous landlords and employers who allow illegal working and renting enable the business model of the evil people smugglers to continue. There is no excuse for not conducting the appropriate checks and those in breach will now face significantly tougher penalties.”

In addition, company bosses who knowingly hire migrants who don't have the right to work in the UK could face fines of up to £45,000 per worker for a first breach and up to £60,000 for repeat offenders; these have been raised from £15,m000 and £20,000 respectively.

The hugely increased fines are on the recommendation of the government’s so-called immigration taskforce, launched earlier this year. 

The taskforce assessed whether immigration checks on accommodation and the labour market should be strengthened. 

Newspaper speculation suggests officials want in particular to monitor the gig economy, which largely relies on casual workers.

Existing Right to Rent legislation requires landlords or agents in England to check that all tenants who occupy their properties have legal status to live in the UK. 

The Home Office introduced Right to Rent checks with the aim of making it harder for people to live and work in England illegally. Tenancies in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland are not subject to Right to Rent checks.

When carrying out a Right to Rent check, landlords or agents must carry out a check on all prospective tenants over the age of 18, even if they are not named on the tenancy by either:

- Checking an original form of ID (from a list of acceptable identification documents) in the presence of the prospective tenant;

- or using an approved identity service provider (IDSP) to check your ID;

- or viewing a tenant’s Right to Rent online via the Home Office ‘share code’ system.

In certain cases the check can be carried out at any point in advance of the start of the tenancy. In others, the check needs to be carried out within the 28 days prior to the start of the tenancy.

Landlords and agents are also legally required to make follow-up checks where identification is time-limited, as in the case - for example - of  student visas.

Want to comment on this story? If so...if any post is considered to victimise, harass, degrade or intimidate an individual or group of individuals on any basis, then the post may be deleted and the individual immediately banned from posting in future.

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    The Share Code is brilliant.
    It would make everything far more straightforward if all tenants including British ones had to be verified using the Share Code system.

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    That way the tenant has to get approval from the home office, we then just check they have the approval.

     
    Matthew Payne

    I agree, yes its very good and easy to acccess. This isnt about regular landlords checking though and trying to catch them out, its about trying to close down the black market in housing all the boat people who arrive and just vanish. The numbers reporting to be claiming asylum and being supported by government are far far lower then net migration numbers and the ones we dont know about, there are millions of illegal immigrants in the UK who are trying to keep a low profile.

     
  • Ferey Lavassani

    It basically means that landlords should do the job of the border control officers. What next?

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    This is what we need another election point to get voters ?
    Why is this Taskforce does not provide numbers on how efficient they are, by providing figures ie how may landlords/employers have been prosecuted and what was the fine and how many illegals were caught and how many have been deported.
    First get rid of the rough landlords or when landlords have to apply for a licence , the council ( they make enough money from the licence fees) checks the status of the tenants.

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    That's an idea, we give the local council details of new tenants, as i always do so that the tenant is charged the council tax and then the council can tell us if we are allowed to rent to them, seems fair enough to me

     
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    Ask the council to do some work? Mmm... I see holes in this plan...

     
  • Franklin I

    This is the reason why I've been campaigning for "Tenant's Licensing."

    The "Right to rent, " documentation is data protection!

    In order for the LL to confirm the status of the tenant's "Right to rent," the LL will require their DOB and NI number.

    Under these circumstances, most LL's would and should have already been registered with the ICO (Information Commissioner's Office) as data controllers, with a registration number provided to the tenants, known as the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) Letter/Notification upon each tenancy renewal.

    The problem we have here, is that if your tenant is in rent arrears or uncooperative, you may face difficulties in getting them to provide you with the "Right to Rent," especially if, they're adamant that you're not getting their NI number.

    In addition to all of that, the documentation has an expiry date and has to be presented to the tenant upon each tenancy renewal.

    It's for this reason, that the tenant should also be accountable for providing and taking a joint responsibility in providing these documents, not just the LL!

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    Our nanny state does not want tenants to be accountable for anything. It's everything on the landlord and agents and nice little earners £££ in fines where not. Or preventing you getting your property back...

     
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    On the one hand the Govt make it really difficult to rent to certain demographics such as people coming to this country (Right to Rent legislation - altho to be fare the share code worked fine when I last used it) and recipients of benefits (Clawback and the determination of the UC depts not to deal with landlords) Tenants with pets (tenant fees act - not pet deposits) - and then berate us for not letting to them????? DUH!

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    Yes I have always done the necessary to comply.
    When you have 5 / 6 shares on one Contract there’s usually trouble with one or two from from foreign parts, either they don’t understand or Share codes expired as they don’t last very long , or you are presented with a fist of documents from each, sometimes no cross reference between one and another. So you try and match those up under pressure with all the other documents you are required to give them as well and deal with the Contract, so all additional unpaid work.
    Then attack is from every angle,
    several hundred pounds taken morning by licensing Authority from my credit card second 70% instalment of Application fee that’s taken them 15 months to process, they did look for some updated documents weeks ago which I had not a problem but theirs had expired because they sat on it so long, only gave me 7 days to present them but ok for themselves to take over a year.
    At least they haven’t brought back the death penalty for us yet.

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    There isn't a formal death penalty, but they are causing landlords (many of whom are very elderly) far too much stress and worry, and that can lead to serious health problems.

    There are double standards about everything concerning us.

     
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    On some occasions when I've told prospective HMO tenants that I'll need evidence that they have the legal right to live and study or work in the UK, they have suddenly and mysteriously lost interest. I'm actually quite pleased. Feels like dodging a bullet.

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