Agents still border control officers under Right To Rent – top lawyer

The Right to Rent scheme’s revised code of practice coming into effect next month does nothing to stop agents and landlords being used as border control officers.

That’s the view of high profile housing law expert David Smith, a partner at JMW Solicitors.

He says: “In short, the changes are still fairly cosmetic and make things a little easier in respect of certain groups. However, there is still the obligation on landlords to behave as unpaid border control officers and to report tenants to the Home Office.

“This system is also likely to see a more radical change next year as the UK moves towards a proposed ‘points based immigration system’ and, presumably, also moves to downgrade EEA and Swiss nationals to being of similar immigration status to other countries for which we normally allow time-limited visa free access (as opposed to unlimited visa free access) with the option to extend in certain circumstances.

“Agents and landlords will want to review the new code and will need to keep their eyes on the changing picture for the Right to Rent.”

And he concludes: “There remains a lighter-touch regime in place for Right to Rent during the Covid pandemic as well which agents and landlords should be aware of.”

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