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Right to Rent

In a new scheme launched by the government this year, illegal immigrants face eviction without a court order as part of a wider government clampdown on illegal immigration. In today’s blog psot we will examine the policy itself as well as analyse the repercussions of this new legislation.

The new law has an impact on both the landlord who is renting the property and the illegal immigrant who would potentially rent the property. The main point is that landlords could be fined or face up to five years in prison for failing to check potential tenants immigration status in a new offense under the new immigration bill. Landlords who repeatedly fail to check the immigration status of their tenants could potential find themselves on council blacklists that would effectively stop them from renting out their properties.  An additional side effect would also be that this new piece of legislation would prevent landlords from renting out substandard properties thus potentially protecting vulnerable people who seek accommodation.

Indeed, under the new immigration bill, landlords, after being informed by the Home Office that their tenant has the right to rent in the UK, may be able to evict illegal immigrants. In some cases landlords will be able to do so without the need for a court order.

The scheme for landlords to check whether or not their potential tenant has the right to rent in the UK has been trialed in the midlands for the last year. It has been met with mixed success with critics citing the low number of actual arrests as proof that the scheme is and will be ineffective.

It is thought that these new laws have been designed to make it easier to evict illegal immigrants without the need of a court order is part of a wider clampdown on immigration and is a response to the ongoing immigration crisis in Calais. The idea behind these tough new laws it to show that Britain is not easy place for illegal migrants to settle in and to discourage them from coming here. The government want the United Kingdom to be seen as a country that is strict on asylum appeals and is not an easy place for illegals to settle in.

However, the new rules raise quite a few issues both morally and legally such as:

  • What happens to immigrants?
  • How do we monitor how many illegal immigrants there are?
  • How does the new law comply with Article 8 of the Human Rights Act?
  • Who pays for the bailiffs to evict the tenets?

We are unsure as to the potential of success of this scheme. Is it clearly just another government scheme to appear tough on immigration and to be seen to be proactive or will it reduce the numbers of illegals?. Morally what position should we as a country take? Is it not the government’s job to monitor illegal immigration rather than relying on landlords to do this for them? Obviously, landlords are effectively the front line of contact with potential illegal immigrants but should the government be more understanding to these people?

What are your views? Do you agree? Let us know below

Westkin Associates

info@westkin.com

5th Floor, Maddox House,
1 Maddox Street
Mayfair
London
W1S 2PZ
United Kingdom
0207 118 4546

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