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The Immigration Bill currently going through Parliament is expected to become law later this year.
How does this affect landlords of residential property?
There are currently civil penalties that apply to landlords that have not checked whether an adult occupier of a residential tenanted property has the right to rent property in the UK. However, The Bill goes a stage further and creates a criminal offence for landlords, where a landlord knows or has reasonable grounds to believe that an adult is disqualified from renting as a result of his or her immigration status, yet allows the adult to occupy residential premises. There is also another offence where a tenant’s leave to remain in the UK expires during the term of the tenancy, the tenant continues to occupy the property and the landlord is aware of this, or has reasonable cause to believe this has happened and fails to notify the Secretary of State as soon as reasonably practicable.
Similar offences apply to letting agents when they carry out “right to rent checks” on behalf of a landlords.
Please note that this does not apply just to the named tenant but also to any adult occupier of the premises that have been let.
For more information about property dispute, landlord and tenant matters or civil and property litigation contact Nick Armitage on 01422 410570 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.