Landlords have been given new advice by the government regarding right to rent checks. The checks can now be performed online. The new measures are temporary and designed to ensure a minimum of contact during this period of social distancing due to coronavirus.
The Old Right to Rent Check Rules
In normal times, right to rent checks must be performed face to face. The landlord must inspect documents provided by all occupants of the property that prove they have the right to reside in the UK for the period of the let. The landlord must keep a record of the checks, a copy of the documents shown and any questions asked and answers given.
A list of acceptable right to rent documents can be found on page 8 here.
The New (Temporary) Right to Rent Check Rules
Due to COVID-19, these checks can now take place electronically. Tenants can submit a scanned copy or photo of the documents via email or using an app, such as WhatsApp. The document copy must then be inspected while on a video call with the tenant. The tenant must hold up their original document to the camera while it is checked against the digital copy.
The landlord must then record the date that the check has been made and mark is as “an adjusted check has been undertaken on [date] due to COVID-19”. The same documents can be used as during normal times.