Landlords in Lancaster who do not comply with the Right to Rent scheme will face a range of possible penalties, including up to five years in prison
The Home Office recently announced a number of changes under the Immigration Act 2016, which come into effect from December 2016, including making a failure to meet Right to Rent requirements a criminal offence.
Right to Rent was introduced across England on February 1, 2016 and requires landlords or their letting agents to make adequate immigration checks before letting a property. If they do not, they can be liable for a fine of up to £3,000.
But the new provisions set out by the Home Office have created four new criminal offences that extend the potential punishments to include a fine, up to five years in prison or both.
Some landlords could even receive a fine, a custodial sentence and further sanctions for persistent breaches or failure to take steps to remove illegal migrants from a property under the Proceeds of Crime Act.
Carole Charge, technical and compliance director at property specialist Leaders, says: “Illegal immigrants do not have the right to rent a home in the UK, but some unscrupulous landlords continue to exploit this market for financial gain.
“The Home Office is working to crack down on this practice.”