Homeless 'duty to refer'

This page is for Public Authorities wishing to make statutory referrals as required under the Homelessness Reduction Act 2017.

Guidance on the duty to refer can be found here

Who should refer?

Specified public authorities have the duty to refer those people they consider are homeless (or threatened with homelessness within 56 days) to Local Housing Authorities from 1 October 2018.

These public authorities are shown below: 

  • prisons (public and private)
  • youth offender institutions
  • secure training centres
  • secure colleges
  • youth offending teams
  • probation services (community rehabilitation companies and national probation service)
  • Jobcentre Plus
  • accident and emergency services provided in a hospital
  • urgent treatment centres
  • hospitals in their capacity of providing in-patient treatment
  • social service authorities

The Secretary of State for Defence is also subject to the duty to refer in relation to members of the regular forces. The regular forces are the Royal Navy, the Royal Marines, the Army and the Royal Air Force

If you work for an organisation which is not listed above, you may not be subject to the duty to refer. However, you can still make a referral to us if you are working with someone who you think may be homeless or threatened with homelessness. Please use the same referral process listed below

What do I need to do?

During office hours, please call and speak to the Housing Solutions team, on 01603 430641 (Broadland) or 01508 533742 (South Norfolk) before a referral is made.

Outside of office hours, please email your referral through to us as outlined below. We will check referrals made outside of normal office opening hours. 

Before you make the referral:

  • you must have the person's consent
  • you must allow the customer to identify the housing authority in England which they would like the notification to be made to
  • you must have the consent from the customer that their contact details can be supplied so the housing authority can contact them.

How do I refer?

What happens next?

The referral form will be passed to one of our Housing Solutions Officers who will make contact with the customer and assess whether a homeless application should be taken from them.