The immigration act of 2016 was introduced to tackle illegal immigration by making it harder to work illegally in the U.K.
The Act gives the Home Secretary the power to serve a Notice to the landlord notifying them that the person or persons occupying the property have been disqualified from renting as a result of their immigration status. Should the landlord receive such notice they will have to take “Reasonable steps” to end the tenancy and serve a notice to the occupiers of minimum 28 days to vacate the premises.
At the end of that notice period the landlord can instruct a High Court Enforcement Officer directly to remove the occupiers without further Court permission. Essentially this is allowing eviction without a Court order.
What needs to be done?
It is a criminal offence to lease a property to an individual who does not have a “right to rent”.
Right to rent checks must be carried on all prospective adult occupiers. Should such checks be expired it is the landlord’s responsibility to notify the Home Office.
The landlord will only have committed an offence if they knowingly or with reasonable cause believe to have let a residential property to a disqualified person. If a landlord is found guilty of an offence under the Immigration Act 2016 they will be liable to imprisonment for up to 12 months or up to five years or a fine both if convicted on indictment.
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