Right to Rent

Right to Rent Immigration Checks

From October 2022 Landlords/Agents have to check your right to rent in any of the following ways.

  • In-person obtaining copies of your documents
  • Use an online right-to-rent checking service
  • Contact a digital identity service provider

The landlord/agent can determine the types of checks depending on your immigration status. Click here to read the government guidance.

What does the Right to Rent mean for the tenant?

Right to Rent was introduced under the Immigration Act 2014 and it places restrictions on illegal immigrants accessing rented accommodation in England by making all adult occupants prove they are legally in the UK before being granted a tenancy. As part of the pre-tenancy checks, this is a process called a Right to Rent check.

What is a Right to Rent check?

The landlord/agent legally is required to check the immigration status of all adult tenants, lodgers, and anyone else who may be living in the property. The prospective tenant must show their identity documents in person to the landlord/agent who then make copies of the documents seen and record the check as being completed.

If you as a tenant have been granted permission to rent out a room to a lodger, you as the tenant must check their right to rent unless your landlord/agent agrees to carry out this check, if they do, they will send you written confirmation for your records.

The right to rent check must be carried out without breaching the equality laws.  Gov UK has issued a code of practice for landlords to ensure they do not unlawfully discriminate contrary to the Equality Act 2010 when carrying out right-to-rent checks. Link to 

What are the landlord's/agent's responsibilities?

The landlord/agent must:

  • Check all adult tenants who will live in the property as their only or main home
  • Ask tenants for the original documents that show they have the right to be in the UK
  • Check the original documents with the tenant physically present and ensure they are valid
  • Make copies of the original documents and record when the check was completed
  • Conduct follow-up checks at the appropriate time (e.g. repeat the check when a tenant's visa expires)

If follow-up checks reveal that an occupant in a rental property no longer has a valid ‘Right to Rent' then the landlord/lettings agent must report that person to the Home Office.

Who has the right to rent?

You have the right to rent if you: 

  • are a British or Irish citizen
  • have indefinite leave to remain (ILR)
  • have refugee status or humanitarian protection
  • have settled or pre-settled status under the EU settlement scheme
  • have permission to be in the UK, for example, on a work or student visa
  • are granted a time-limited right to rent by the Home Office 

What documents are acceptable?

Acceptable documents that a tenant can use to demonstrate their identity and Right to Rent are dependent on their nationality.

For British citizens, any documents listed on the acceptable identity documents are listed here.

For all other nationalities, any documents listed in the government's right-to-rent checks immigration documents.  

The landlord/agent can ask for your date of birth and a 'share code' to get the information online.  Share codes can be generated on GOV.UK    

If your documents are with the Home Office the landlord/agent can request a right to rent check on GOV.UK or contact the landlord right to rent helpline on 0300 069 9799 quoting the Home Office reference number provided by you.  

What happens if you fail the right-to-rent check?

Unfortunately, if you fail the pre-tenancy checks legally the landlord/agent cannot offer you a tenancy and if you fail the follow-up check the landlord/agent must inform the Home Office.

The Home Office will carry out their checks to ensure no mistakes have occurred and they can send out a disqualification notice and ask the landlord/agent to end the tenancy as you do not have the right to rent in the UK.  


The eviction processes the landlord/agent will take will depend on the circumstances. In the instance where some of the tenants must right to rent the process to end the tenancy will be in the form of giving correct notice and going to court for an eviction order. There are situations where the landlord would accept the person with no right to rent to leave and the remaining tenants to stay on. In the situation when all the tenants do not have the right to rent there is no need for a court order, but the landlord/agent must give you a minimum of 4 weeks’ notice of eviction and if you do not leave carry out peaceable eviction.

If you would like to discuss your circumstances feel free to contact us using the form below.