Screening undocumented immigrants

6 Replies

How do you all screen illegals for a rental property?  They have an ITIN but no social.  Can I ask the police to check for something?

The have  TIN , Tax Identification Number. They do not have a social Security number, which is needed to run most credit and criminal reports.

What's your criteria? No valid social security number I Deny.

An Individual Taxpayer Identification Number (ITIN) is a tax processing number issued by the Internal Revenue Service. The IRS issues ITINs to individuals who are required to have a U.S. taxpayer identification number but who do not have, and are not eligible to obtain, a Social Security number (SSN) from the Social Security Administration (SSA).

The IRS issues ITINs regardless of immigration status, because both resident and nonresident aliens may have a U.S. filing or reporting requirement under the Internal Revenue Code. They do not serve any purpose other than federal tax reporting. An ITIN does not authorize work in the U.S. or provide eligibility for Social Security benefits or the Earned Income Tax Credit.

Are illegals your only applicants, if not then pass on the illegals and move to someone you can properly screen.

DO NOT ASK OF IMMIGRATION STATUS.

@Deanna McCormick has it right;  Establish your criteria AND STICK TO IT.

If the SSN & CR are criteria and they can't provide it, then the answer is clear.

Originally posted by @Dan Miles :

How do you all screen illegals for a rental property?  They have an ITIN but no social.  Can I ask the police to check for something?

 I have said it before and I will say it again. You can't screen illegal aliens.

The only records you will come across are those in the US. A person could literally be a convicted child rapist in some foreign country and you wouldn't be able to find out. 

Illegal aliens constantly use multiple aliases and fake names to avoid law enforcement, so how exactly do you think you are going to be able to find an eviction? How do you even know what name to search?

Someone suggested a taxpayer ID. That is great and all except many illegal aliens have multiple TINS. 

I would also suggest you do not trust consular IDs or any state/local issued ID that did not require at minimum a passport.

As for asking immigration status, I will ask, and I will refuse to rent to them based on that alone.

You really never know even with a background check what someone will do.  It's a tool we use to try to avoid problem tenants.  So since they have lived here for 16yrs, there should be some record if trouble was caused during that time.  Right?

Originally posted by @Dan Miles :

You really never know even with a background check what someone will do.  It's a tool we use to try to avoid problem tenants.  So since they have lived here for 16yrs, there should be some record if trouble was caused during that time.  Right?

Exactly. Anyone, here illegally or not, can use aliases and could have visited another country and committed a crime, and you'll never know it. 

Run the background check with the info you know - name and dob. Run address histories on the name. Check local county circuit court records for any potential lawsuits against them. Inquire as to non-traditional credit items that don't show up on a credit report such as utilities, rent receipts, buy here/pay here car payments. Heavily search them out on social media.

A huge portion of the tenant base around me and my clients are undocumented. The above items are mostly what we use - especially looking them up on facebook (or if they aren't there, lookup the kids). Its a different niche in the rental world that can certainly be lucrative, but requires an adjustment to the standard procedure and a change for most in thinking.

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