01 Apr 2020

Right to rent checks have been adapted to make it easier for landlords to carry them out during the coronavirus outbreak, the Home Secretary announced Monday 30th March.

Effective immediately, the temporary changes will mean the Home Office will not require landlords  to see original documents and will allow checks to be undertaken over video calls.

These temporary changes will mean that during the coronavirus outbreak prospective renters are now able to submit scanned documents, rather than originals, to show they have a right to rent.

Checks continue to be necessary and it is an offence to knowingly let property to anyone who does not have legal immigration status in the UK.

If a prospective or existing tenant or employee cannot provide any of the accepted documents, the landlord or employer should use the Landlord Checking Service or Employer Checking Service.

Home Secretary Priti Patel said: “I have introduced these temporary changes to help landlords conduct checks more easily as people follow advice to stay at home to protect the NHS and save lives, during the coronavirus outbreak.”

Once the temporary changes end, landlords will be asked to carry out the full checks on existing tenants and employees who rented a property or started work during the pandemic.

The ‘right to rent’ scheme requires landlords to check that all tenants who occupy their properties have legal status to live in the UK.

You can read full Government guidance on what this means for landlords.

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