Right to Rent

As part of its campaign to tackle illegal immigration, the UK government introduced in December 2014 “right to rent” measures in the pilot area of the West Midlands (Birmingham, Walsall, Sandwell, Dudley and Wolverhampton) whereby landlords were (still are) required to carry out checks to ensure that all residents over 18 living at the property under a residential tenancy agreement, event those not named as tenants, have the right to be in the UK.

As of 1 February 2016, all landlords, agents and householders letting or sub-letting residential property across the country will be required to carry out checks.  There is no requirement to check the right to rent of tenants and occupiers who were in occupation prior to 1 February 2016 (or prior to 1 December 2014 in the West Midlands).

Landlords who let property (or even a room) to tenants who do not have the right to rent may be liable to pay a penalty of up to £3,000 per occupier.

For advice and guidance on complying with this obligation please contact cthompson@hcrlaw.com or pmarleau@hcrlaw.com.