1st October change to homelessness regulations under HRA brings new 'duty to refer' stipulation for public authorities
01 OCT 2018

As of 1st October 2018, specified Public Bodies now have a duty to refer service users they think may be homeless or threatened with becoming homeless within 56 days, as long as they have the consent of that person and the person has identified which Local Housing Authority they would like to be referred to.  

This is a new homelessness regulation which is part of the changes made under the Homelessness Reduction Act 2017.

Public Authorities which have a duty to refer are:

  • Jobcentre Plus
  • Hospital A&E Services
  • Urgent treatment centres
  • Hospitals (in-patient treatment)
  • Social service authorities
  • The Secretary of State for Defence (in relation to members of)
  • Royal Navy
  • Royal Marines
  • Army (regular)
  • Royal Air Force
  • Prisons (public and private)
  • Youth Offender Institutions
  • Secure training centres
  • Secure colleges
  • Youth Offending Teams (YOTs)
  • Probation services (including community rehabilitation companies

We would like to work in partnership with these authorities here in Birmingham. They are not expected to conduct housing needs assessments as part of this process, that is very much our role, however Public Authorities should adopt a common sense approach and if in doubt make the referral.

To make a referral under Duty to Refer (Birmingham Local Housing Authority) please click on the link below. This is done utilising the Housing Jigsaw system. Progress of the referral can be tracked by the referrer through the Housing Jigsaw system. All referrers will be notified of the outcome of the referral within 5 working days and the young person will be booked in for an appointment where appropriate within 10 working days. 

Make a referral

find out more

If you need more information, BCC's website has a useful summary: What is the Duty to Refer?

Alternatively you can speak with staff about this change at our next free Youth Hub briefing:

Book onto a Youth Hub briefing