Questions raised over landlord immigration checks policy in Queen’s Speech

12:58 08 May 2013

Private landlords across the capital will have to check the immigration status of their tenants, under legislation proposed in today’s Queen Speech.

Hundreds of thousands of households live in privately rented accomodation in London.

The move, part of a string measures aimed at tackling illegal immigration, has been seen by some as a “distraction” from real housing issues.

The London Assembly’s Labour group housing spokesperson, Tom Copley, said: “Of course it’s important to make sure that people who are here illegally are found, but it looks like the government are trying to distract people from the real problem.”

“There is a housing crisis for all tenures in London, with poor conditions in the private rented sector where people are charged rip-off rents.”

He added: “I’m puzzled as to how this new immigration check law could be implemented, at the moment landlords and letting agents have no formal relationship with government.

“There is no national register of landlords. Many landlords routinely flout the few existing requirements placed on them – about the safety of their property or the need to pay tax on their income from renting.”

“Why are [the government] prioritising this and not taking steps to make conditions better for the 800,000 households who privately rent in London?” Mr Copley said.

But the National Landlords Association (NLA) welcomed the proposal, even though they stressed it was already practised by reputable landlords.

Richard Lambert, CEO of the NLA said: “Every landlord should thoroughly reference a tenant prior to offering a tenancy; this is standard best practice which safeguards the landlord’s business.

“Tenant checks should include not only an identity check, as suggested, but also whether the tenant has any County Court Judgments, possible aliases and include references from their employer and a previous landlord. Such checks should highlight any immigration irregularities.”

He also called for local authorities to undertake “robust, intelligence-led, targeted enforcement” to prevent illegal immigrants who are refused housing being pushed into a life of crime.

Latest Stories

Police want to speak to this man in connection with the rape of a man in a Kingston nightclub (Picture: Metropolitan Police)

CCTV has been released of a man police want to speak to after a 19-year-old man was raped in a nightclub toilet in Kingston-upon-Thames.

Read more
Police have released a CCTV still of the man wanted after a gunpoint robbery at Charlton Lido in July (Picture: Metropolitan Police)

The moment a man walked in to Charlton Lido with a gun to commit an armed robbery has been released by police who want to track down the suspect.

Read more
The man was found with a stab wound and bite marks on Wanstead Flats (Picture: PA Images/Stefan Rousseau)

Two teenage girls have been arrested after a man was found stabbed and bitten on Wanstead Flats by firefighters called to put out a grass fire.

Read more

TOP Stories

Police want to speak to this man in connection with the rape of a man in a Kingston nightclub (Picture: Metropolitan Police)

CCTV has been released of a man police want to speak to after a 19-year-old man was raped in a nightclub toilet in Kingston-upon-Thames.

Police have released a CCTV still of the man wanted after a gunpoint robbery at Charlton Lido in July (Picture: Metropolitan Police)

The moment a man walked in to Charlton Lido with a gun to commit an armed robbery has been released by police who want to track down the suspect.

The man was found with a stab wound and bite marks on Wanstead Flats (Picture: PA Images/Stefan Rousseau)

Two teenage girls have been arrested after a man was found stabbed and bitten on Wanstead Flats by firefighters called to put out a grass fire.

Promotions

Advanced running and training technology for beginners up to elite athletes

If you’re thinking of adding running treadmill to your fitness routine, you’re on the right track! There are several advantages to running on a treadmill versus running outdoors.

Renault-Zoe

The Renault ZOE follows on from the introduction of the electric Fluence ZE and Twizy, but unlike the former, the ZOE was designed from the ground up as an electric vehicle.

When no simple way to find Real Ale was at hand, 4 Ale enthusiasts got together to allow anyone with a smart phone to find Real Ale no matter where they happened to be, this was the birth of the Perfect Pint app.

London Bloggers

Monday, September 1, 2014
Do you really need an explanation for that?! (Pic by Serena Marinelli)

If you’ve ever seen an Italian movie, you would probably know how important body language is in the culture.

Tuesday, August 26, 2014
Don't waste any of your harvest

If you are now inundated with ripe tomatoes, juicy green beans, berries and herbs, don’t leave them to go stringy or mouldy because the freezer can go a long way to making your crops last well into winter.

Friday, August 22, 2014
It turns out painting is the perfect thing to do in bars

I’m somewhat of a casual, lazy and very much amateur painter and after a busy day at work, the prospect of getting all my brushes, acrylics, water and other faff out is far from appealing.

Quizzes

Do you fancy yourself as a football ground know-it-all? Try our devilishly difficult quiz!

How well do you know your football stadiums? This brand new quiz from London24 will seperate the men from the boys...

Read more
Do you know your Thames truths from the porkie pies? (Photo by Mike Hewitt/Getty Images)

So, you live (or work) in London, and you think you know the river well.

Read more
Diego Costa of Chelsea exchanges words with Cesc Fabregas (Photo by Chris Brunskill/Getty Images)

Chelsea have made several personnel changes over the course of the summer as they look to mount a squad that can challenge for the title.

Read more