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The Homelessness Reduction Act 2017 (Duty to Refer). The Act introduced a duty on specified authorities to notify a housing authority of service users they consider may be homeless or threatened with homelessness.

Under section 213B of the Homelessness Reduction Act 2018From October 1 you have a duty to refer any household that you come into contact with that are homeless or at the risk of homelessness within the next 56 days to the relevant local authority.

Before making a referral, a public authority must

  • Have consent to the referral from the individual.
  • Allow the individual to identify the housing authority in England which they would like the notification to be made to.
  • Have consent from the individual that their contact details can be supplied so the housing authority can contact them.

Who does it apply to?

The public authorities which are subject to the duty to refer are specified in The Homelessness (Review Procedure etc) Regulations 2018. The public services included in the duty are as follows:

  • prisons
  • youth offender institutions
  • secure training centres
  • secure colleges
  • youth offending teams
  • probation services (including community rehabilitation companies)
  • Jobcentre Plus
  • social service authorities
  • emergency departments
  • urgent treatment centres
  • hospitals in their function of providing inpatient care

What do you need to do?

From October 1 you have a duty to refer any household that you come into contact with that are homeless or at the risk of homelessness within the next 56 days to the relevant local authority that the person has identified and you have obtained the householders consent.

North Norfolk District Council would encourage you to speak to the Housing Options Team on dutytorefer@north-norfolk.gov.uk or call 01263 516375 (emergency out-of-hours 01223 849700) before a referral is made or complete the Housing Assistance Referral Form.