Right to rent updated Guidance Factsheet

This email only affects Right to rent checks in England.

On 1 December 2014 the government introduced the Immigration Act 2014 in the West Midlands as a working trial and then for the rest of England on 1 December 2016.

Section 27(4) of The Immigration Act 2014 states that the length of the eligibility period for renting a property is either one year beginning with the time when the prescribed requirements were last complied or the expiry of their visa, whichever is the longest period. For example if the occupier has a 3 year visa you would not need to re check their documents until 3 years later, or if they have a six month visa but you grant a twelve month tenancy the landlord or agent do not commit an offence.

Currently foreign nationals from outside the European Economic Area (EEA) and Switzerland can only apply for a biometric residence permit once they have arrived in the UK. All non EU visitors that do not intend to reside in the UK have their passports stamped at boarder control.

Since 20 May 2019, the majority of individuals from Australia, Canada, Japan, New Zealand, Singapore, South Korea and the USA (known as B5JSSK nationals) have been able to use the eGates at UK airports, sea ports and Brussels and Paris Eurostar terminals, to enter the UK. Those individuals wishing to do so must hold a biometric passport. Those individuals not in possession of a biometric passport will be processed by a Border Force Officer at the manned passport control point. They will not have their passports endorsed with a stamp, instead individuals will be informed of their leave and its associated conditions orally by a Border Force Officer. Those entering the UK as a visitor or business visitor will be granted automatic leave to enter for a maximum period of up to six months. Those coming to live in the UK for more than six months will have a visa in their passport and will collect their biometric residence permit after arrival, providing them with a means of evidencing their status in the UK.

On 10 October 2019 the Home Office issued updated guidance for right to rent checks. The Home Office are seeking approval from Parliament to amend the Code of Practice.

The changes proposed are,

nationals of Australia, Canada, Japan, New Zealand, Singapore, South Korea and the USA may enter the UK using eGates and will not have their passports endorsed by a Border Force Officer on arrival. Those coming for more than six months will have a visa and will receive a biometric residence permit after arrival.

Those entering as visitors do not require a visa and will not have UK stamps placed in their passport, but will have a right to remain in the UK for six months and are entitled to rent property for this period.

The evidence of arrival in the UK within the last six months, together with a copy of the person’s passport, should be retained by the landlord, including the date the landlord checked these documents, as evidence they have acted in the proper manner.

Until the proposed changes are made in law the Home Office will not seek to impose a civil penalty or prosecute landlords who have not complied with the revised guidance.

July 2019


October 2019 https://docs.smartcdn.co.uk/2489_07102019134337.pdf