Homelessness

February 26th, 2018

CLG has issued Guidance on 22 February 2018 on how local authorities should exercise their homelessness functions in accordance with the Homelessness Reduction Act 2017 from 3 April 2018. Local housing and social services authorities must have regard to this guidance when exercising their functions relating to people who are homeless or at risk of homelessness. This guidance will be in force from 3 April 2018 when the Homelessness Reduction Act comes into force.

Chapter 1 states the purpose of the Code and the relevant equality duties that housing authorities need to consider in carrying out their duties.  Chapter 2 gives guidance on housing authority duties to carry out a homelessness review and publish a homelessness strategy. Chapter 3 gives guidance on housing authority duties to provide free advice and information about homelessness and the prevention of homelessness, and to ensure they design advice to meet the needs of particular vulnerable groups. Chapter 4 gives guidance on the duty on specified public bodies to refer service users that may be homeless or threatened with homelessness to a local housing authority. Chapter 5 gives guidance on contracting out homelessness functions. Chapter 6 gives guidance on how to determine whether a person is homeless or threatened with homelessness according to legislation. Chapter 7 gives guidance on the provisions relating to an applicant’s eligibility for homelessness services. Chapter 8 gives guidance on the categories of applicant who have a priority need for accommodation if they become homeless. Chapter 9 gives guidance on determining whether an applicant has become homeless intentionally under homelessness legislation. Chapter 10 gives guidance on the provisions relating to an applicant’s local connection with an area and explains the procedures for referring an applicant to another housing authority. Chapter 11 gives guidance on the initial assessments required to determine the duties owed to a person applying for homelessness assistance; personalised housing plans and the reasonable steps to be taken to prevent or relieve homelessness. Chapter 12 gives guidance on duties owed to applicants who are threatened with becoming homeless, to try and prevent their homelessness. Chapter 13 gives guidance on duties owed to applicants who are homeless, to try and relieve their homelessness. Chapter 14 gives guidance on how the prevention and relief duties come to an end. Chapter 15 gives guidance on housing authority duties and powers to secure accommodation for applicants; how they arise and are brought to an end, including under the main housing duty. Chapter 16 gives guidance on the various ways in which housing authorities can secure suitable accommodation for applicants. Chapter 17 gives guidance on housing authority duties to ensure that accommodation secured for homeless applicants is suitable. Chapter 18 gives guidance on procedural requirements related to homelessness applications and the notification of decisions. Chapter 19 gives guidance on the procedures to be followed when an applicant requests a review of decisions reached on their homelessness application. Chapter 20 gives guidance on the duties and powers housing authorities have to protect the personal property of an applicant who is homeless. Chapter 21 gives guidance on providing homelessness services to people who have experienced or are at risk of domestic violence or abuse. Chapter 22 gives guidance on providing homelessness services to care leavers. Chapter 23 gives guidance on providing homelessness services to people with an offending history. Chapter 24 gives guidance on providing homelessness services to former members of the armed forces. Chapter 25 gives guidance on providing homelessness services to victims of modern slavery. Annex 1 gives guidance on considering housing applications from persons who are subject to the habitual residence test.

CLG has also published the Government response to the Consultation on the Code of Guidance.https://local-government-law.11kbw.com/wp-admin/admin.php?page=readygraph-app

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