Identity proof

Question from Lynnda updated on 18th May 2015:

Can a landlord request proof of identity? If the tenant refuses to provide it then what is the next step? I understand without this you cannot go to the Tenancy Tribunal.

Our expert Alan Bruce responded:

Under the Residential Tenancies Act 1986 (the Act) there is no obligation on a tenant to provide their landlord proof of identity. However, this does not preclude a landlord asking for it as a part of their pre-tenancy application and screening. If the tenant will not provide you with proof of identity as part of the pre-tenancy application you can decline their application. If you enter into a Tenancy Agreement, you can apply to the Tenancy Tribunal and provide the details for the tenant(s) as stated on the tenancy agreement. You should also include any information known to you if there are any concerns about the identity of the tenant. The Ministry provides a standard template Pre-tenancy application form which can be downloaded from our website here: To discuss your situation further, or for further information about pre-tenancy checks or making an application to the Tenancy Tribunal, you can call 0800 TENANCY (0800 836 262) between 8.00am-5.30pm Monday to Friday to speak with a member of our Tenancy Advice team. You can also visit our website:

The Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment provides information and guidance on building law and compliance, services including weathertight homes, and advice for tenants and landlords.

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