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stingo
11-06-2005, 13:04 PM
I have a South African tenant whose visa to the UK expires in a few months time. He owes me four months rent. Can I take possession of his South African passport as security against outstanding rent?

SteveP
12-06-2005, 06:43 AM
I can't see why not if he agrees to let you have it. But I don't see how it provides any security. The passport has no value to you and you holding it won't prevent him from returning to South Africa.

stingo
12-06-2005, 10:17 AM
Thanks for that Steve. He will not agree to me holding it and is now threating me with an haressment case. I've spent a few hours searching the net trying to find if I can hold his personal property as security against outstanding rent but can't find anything and was hoping that someone on here could give me a definite answer.

My intention is to hold his passport until his visa expires and then to notify the Home Office. They will then put him on the first flight out. The SA authorities take a dim view of this because they have to foot the bill so in most circumstances will lock him up... he'll get out of there with a backside looking like the Japanese flag.

I have been able to establish that if it were a British passport, I would be charged with the theft of the Queens property.

Editor
12-06-2005, 12:01 PM
I would have thought the appropriate place to seek information on this is the Home Office.
In these days of Human Rights, though, I would be very surprised if the authorities deemed it appropriate for one private citizen to hold the passport of another, with or without permission?