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Homelessness

The new Homeless Reduction Act

The Homeless Reduction Act – what it means for you

From April 2018 the new Homelessness Reduction Act increases the requirement for Nuneaton and Bedworth Borough Council’s duty to help all eligible customers – rather than those with a ‘priority need.’

It builds on previous Acts by requiring public authorities (such as the NHS) to notify Nuneaton and Bedworth Borough Council if someone they are working with is facing homelessness.

It adds two new duties:

1. Duty to take steps to prevent homelessness

Nuneaton and Bedworth Borough Council have a duty to help people at risk of losing suitable accommodation as soon as they are threatened with homelessness within 56 days. This means people should get help on receiving a valid notice from their landlord, if they are struggling to find a letting, rather than being told to come back when they have a bailiff’s date.

2. Duty to take steps to relieve homelessness

Nuneaton and Bedworth Borough Council have a duty to help all those who are homeless to secure suitable accommodation, regardless of whether they are ‘intentionally homeless’ or ‘priority need.’ This should mean that all eligible households are offered help to find a home, rather than some people being turned away. It should also ensure that the true scale of homelessness is recorded.

If neither of the above steps work and the household becomes, or remains, homeless, then those in priority need retain their right to be rehoused, but ‘non-priority’ households will not be entitled to further help.      

The meaning of ‘priority need’, and ‘intentionally homeless’ is explained within the Homelessness Code of Guidance.

Last updated Tuesday, 13th February 2018

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