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Dozens of landlords fined after roll-out of new right to rent immigration checks

18 April 2017

Financial penalties totalling £37,000 were handed out in the first eight months after the Right to Rent scheme was rolled out across England, figures obtained by the Press Association reveal.

The fines were issued to 62 landlords between the start of February and end of September last year - a rate of around one every four days.

Right to Rent requires landlords or householders to establish that tenants or lodgers have a right to be in the country by taking copies of documents such as passports or identity cards.

Failure to comply can lead to fines of up to £3,000 a tenant, while those who knowingly rent to people with no right to be in the country can face up to five years in prison.

Home Office data on civil penalties issued for letting to tenants or lodgers without the right to rent were provided following a Freedom of Information request.

Fines issued between February 1 and September 30 last year ranged from £80 to £3,000, with most relating to one or two tenants. Three cases involved three tenants.

Thirty-six penalties were issued in connection with lodgers in a private household, while 26 were handed out over occupiers in rented accommodation.

Separate figures published in January showed that across two phases of the scheme, 106 landlords had been fined, with just under £30,000 collected as of December.

Right to Rent has come under fire from campaigners who claim it is fuelling discrimination and argue there is little evidence it is having an impact in the Government’s efforts to create a “hostile environment” for migrants in the country unlawfully.

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