Right to rent checks were first introduced in 2014. Agents are landlords are required to carry out checks to ensure that their prospective tenants are in England lawfully and have a Right to Rent. This legislation is intended to cover all of the UK though it is currently only running in England.
Following the Brexit transition changes were implemented as of 1st July 2021, which now imposes further checks on these nationals who now need to provide evidence of their Right to Rent by producing confirmation of their EU settled status or eVISA.
In summary, following nationals need to provide below documents
- British and Irish citizens- a current and valid passport or other proof of residency
- EEA and Swiss nationals- a current and valid passport along with confirmation of EU settled status or pre-settled status or eVISA
- Nationals from other countries-a current and valid passport along with a valid visa
Right to rent checks can be carried out online without a face-to-face meeting has now been extended to 5th April 2022. This means that documents can be scanned and sent by email and then verified by a video call where the tenant can show their original documents on screen for comparison with the scanned versions and the photos with the actual person.
Who has unlimited and limited Right to Rent
At the moment, the following have an unlimited Right to Rent
- British Citizens
- Irish Citizens
- People with EU settled status
- People who have the right of abode, who have been granted indefinite leave to remain, or have no time limit on their stay in the UK
For individuals who have an unlimited Right to Rent further checks are not required.
For individuals with a time limited Right to Rent
- People with valid leave to enter or remain in the UK for a time limited period, which includes EEA citizens with pre-settled status or EEA and non-EEA citizens granted time-limited leave under the points-based immigration system.
- People with an outstanding application with the Home Office
Tenants with a time limited Right to Rent must be checked again if their Right to Rent will end during the tenancy period. The follow up check should be carried out shortly before the Right to Rent expires and in the event that the tenant no longer has a Right to Rent a report will need to be made to the Home Office to avoid any sanctions.
It is important to note that if a tenant fails a Right to Rent check, a landlord is only required to take action and report this to the Home Office if the tenant is already in occupation of the property.