Protect yourself against Immigration

As a property professional, it is vital to be aware of not just your employee’s immigration status but the tenant’s themselves. Managing immigration can be difficult and can prove costly if not correctly applied. That’s why we have put together some detailed information on how to monitor tenants and employees immigration status. It is vital to follow this advice to protect yourself and your business.

The Immigration Bill

The Immigration Bill received royal assent on 14th May introducing a number of new reforms. The most significant of these changes was the regulation that made it law, for property professionals to check tenant’s immigration status. This is to ensure tenants are not living in the UK illegally. If you do not check your tenant’s immigration status and you have illegal tenants, the government now has powers to deal with you. The government now suggests agents follow the advice, given to employers on immigration and illegal working.

How do I check a tenant’s immigration status?

imgresIn order to check for a tenant’s immigration status, there are certain requirements you need to follow. Initially, you should check the tenant is holding certain documentation. This documentation could either be a valid passport or national identity card. As well as a passport or national identity card, there are other types of documentation that will prove the tenant’s national identity. These can be seen in theHome Office guide, but are also listed below:

  • A passport showing the holder, or the person named in the passport as the child of the holder.
  • A passport or national identity card showing the holder, or a person as the child of the holder, is a national of an EEA country or Switzerland.
  • A residence permit, registration certificate or document certifying or indicating permanent residence issued by the Home Office to a national of an EEA country or Switzerland.
  • A Biometric Residence Permit issued by the Home Office to the holder which indicates that the person named in it is allowed to stay indefinitely in the UK, or has no time limit on their stay in the UK. (Only valid for 10 years for over 16’s and 5 years for under 16’s)
  • A passport or other travel document endorsed to show that the holder is exempt from immigration control, is allowed to stay indefinitely in the UK, has the right of abode in the UK, or has no time limit on their stay in the UK.
  • An Immigration Status Document issued by the Home Office, to the holder endorsed to indicate that the person named in it is allowed to stay indefinitely in the UK or has no time limit on their stay in the UK together with an official document issued by a previous employer or Government agency with the person’s name and National Insurance number.
  • A full birth or adoption certificate issued in the UK which includes the name(s) of at least one of the holder’s parents together with an official document issued by a previous employer or Government agency with the person’s name and National Insurance number.
  • A birth or adoption certificate issued in the Channel islands, the Isle of Man or Ireland together with an official document issued by a previous employer or Government agency with the person’s name and National Insurance number.
  • A certificate of registration or naturalisation as a British citizen together with an official document issued by a previous employer or Government agency with the person’s name and National Insurance number.
  • A letter issued by the Home Office to the holder which indicates that the person named in it is allowed to stay indefinitely in the UK together with an official document issued by a previous employer or Government agency with the person’s name and National Insurance number.

For more information on this documentation and how it may appear, as well as further information on how to prevent immigration, please see:

https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/304793/full-guide-illegal-working.pdf

The main reason for this change is to protect households around the UK from illegal immigrants. For more information on following the correct immigration procedures please see:

https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/249246/Factsheet_07_-_Landlords.pdf

As an agent, you are not responsible to know everything about immigration, but performing the correct procedures and being aware of immigration, is a must for any agent. We urge you to follow this advice and protect yourself before it’s too late.

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