Right to Rent Carries On Despite Immigration Rules Overhaul
Sweeping changes to points-based immigration controls will not impact landlords carrying out Right to Rent checks.
The controls change on January 1 2021, when the UK’s Brexit transition period ends and European Union freedom of movement rules stop.
The government has told letting agent trade body ARLA that Right to Rent checks will carry on unchanged, and landlords will not have to review income or job offers for EU nationalscoming to the country looking for a home to rent.
EU nationals have until June 2021 to apply for settled status in the UK. Meanwhile, landlords can continue to accept passports and national identity cards as evidence to live in the UK until June 30, 2021.
“Despite several political speeches on the government’s intentions after Britain leaves the EU, there are still no firm plans in place concerning the Right to Rent checks. Therefore, agents must continue to conduct checks in accordance with existing procedures until new guidance is issued,” says ARLA.
“While it looks likely there will be changes regarding the eligibility to rent based on nationality, it’s important to remember that any future changes cannot be backdated. Where an applicant meets the eligibility criteria, they must not be subject to discrimination.”
Right to Rent only applies to landlords and tenants in England.
Home secretary Priti Patel announced the immigration control overhaul in February 2020. The program gives immigrants points for skills, qualifications and work experience, with only those who amass enough points allowed entry to the UK to live and work. The controls apply to EU and non-EU nationals equally.
“We’re ending free movement, taking back control of our borders and delivering on the people’s priorities by introducing a new UK points-based immigration system, which will bring overall migration numbers down,” said Patel.
“We will attract the brightest and the best from around the globe, boosting the economy and our communities, and unleash this country’s full potential.”
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View Related Handbook Page
Immigration Act and Right to Rent
All landlords and agents need to check the identity of all prospective occupiers. Copies of the documents obtained will need to be securely stored. Landlords and agents must not authorise an adult to occupy a property where the adult is not a national of the UK and Colonies or Republic of Ireland, AND who does not have the right to enter or remain in the UK unless the prescribed requirements have been complied with.