Legislation aimed at preventing illegal immigrants from renting properties is fueling a black market in forged IDs, a BBC investigation has found.
Under Right to Rent rules introduced last year landlords must check the immigration status of new tenants.
But criminal gangs are helping undocumented immigrants flout the law by them selling fake documents.
A Home Affairs spokesperson said landlords were not expected to be experts in spotting forged documents.
However, David Smith of Anthony Gold Solicitors, who specialises in landlord and tenant law, said this lack of expertise was problematic.
“They (landlords) do not have the knowledge or skills to do the job properly. I’ve never met a landlord who can tell a valid Liechtenstein passport from a forgery,” he told the BBC.
The simple fact is that landlords do not have to be experts. Checking documents such as passports through Veriphy is a simple process – any passport from across the globe can be checked in seconds.
What is more our Travel Visa check can also validate may be used to screen UK and EU Travel Visas and UK Entry Clearance documents.
The Right to Rent rules were introduced across England in February 2016 and, since then, Home Office figures show 170 fines have been issued to landlords.
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