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Checking the validity of right to rent documents
Checking the validity of right to rent documents
Updated over a week ago

Please note: The following information is provided by the government in relation to guidance on Right to Rent checks. You can also find the most recent guidance here.

When you are checking the validity of the documents, you should ensure that you do this in the presence of the holder.

This can be a physical presence in person or via a live video link. In both cases, you must be in physical possession of the original documents.

For example, an individual may choose to send their documents to you by post to enable you to conduct the check with them via a live video link. You may NOT rely on the inspection of the document via a live video link or by checking a faxed or scanned copy of the document.

If you are given a false document, you will only be liable for a civil penalty if it is reasonably apparent that it is false. This means that a person who is untrained in the identification of false documents, examining them carefully, but without the use of technological aids could reasonably be expected to realise that the document in question is not genuine.

You will not obtain a statutory excuse if:

  • it is reasonably apparent that the person presenting the document is not the person referred to in that document, even if the document itself is genuine.

  • you know that the individual does not have a right to rent; or

  • you know that the documents are false or do not rightfully belong to the holder.

You may wish to read the online guidance about recognising fraudulent identity documents. Guidance on examining identity documents can be found on GOV.UK. You can also compare identity and travel documents against the images published on:

  • PRADO - Public Register of Authentic travel and identity Documents Online

  • EdisonTD These are archives of identity and travel documents.

If someone gives you a false document or a genuine document that does not belong to them, you should use this link to report the individual to the government, or call the Landlord helpline on 0300 790 6268, Monday to Thursday, 9am to 4:45pm Friday, 9am to 4:30pm.

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