Local connection referral procedures updated


Following a consultation the Local Authorities' Agreement has now been updated, to reflect the changes made in England by the Homelessness Reduction Act 2017.

A map of England, Scotland & Wales

The guidelines - agreed by the LGA, CoSLA and WLGA - can be downloaded from the LGA website here.

The document mainly concerns referrals in England but also covers cross-border issues in relation to Scotland and Wales.

Homelessness practitioners will already know that the agreement includes important guidance which all councils are encouraged to apply, most notably concerning the circumstances that should be taken as giving rise to a local connection.

The Agreement also sets out the dispute resolution procedure for where councils cannot reach agreement on a proposed referral.

Paragraph 1.1 reminds English councils they can't seek a cross-border referral to Scotland or Wales to avoid the relief duty (under section 198(A1) of the Housing Act 1996).

The English Code of Guidance will presumably be updated shortly, to include the promised second Annex.


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