Apply for homeless housing help
Review of your housing needs application
If you are unhappy with our decision on your homelessness and Housing Needs Register applications you can request a review.
The decisions you can request to be reviewed are:
- being ineligible for housing assistance
- discharging a prevention duty
- discharging a relief duty
- not being homeless or threatened with homelessness
- not being in priority need
- being intentionally homeless or threatened with homelessness intentionally
- having other suitable accommodation available
- being referred to another authority
- having a suitable offer of temporary accommodation (Part VII)
- having a suitable offer of permanent accommodation which discharges the Council's duties towards you
- not putting you on the Housing Needs Register
- removing you from the Register without you asking us to do so
- reducing your priority on the Housing Needs Register due to unacceptable behaviour
- about the facts of your case that have or are likely to be taken into account when allocating accommodation.
The review process
You must request a review within 21 days of the date of the letter we wrote to you about our decision.
The review will be carried out by a Senior Officer who has not been involved in the original decision.
They will look at:
- the information on your file
- your written submission
- any other evidence in support of your review.
We will then write to you to tell you the outcome 56 days or sooner from the day told us you wanted a review. Occasionally it may take us longer than this, we will let you know if that happens.
Temporary accommodation during the review period
We would not normally provide temporary accommodation for you whilst your case is being considered unless:
- Your review is about the temporary accommodation you have been given and you agree to stay in that accommodation whilst your review is considered.
- There are exceptional reasons that will be considered when we receive your request for a review.
Reviewing the suitability of an offer of permanent accommodation
If you ask for a review of the suitability of any permanent accommodation you are offered (made under Section 184 of the Housing Act 1996, Part VII), we strongly advise you to move into the accommodation offered while the review takes place.
If the decision is not favourable to you:
- and you do not move into the accommodation offered you may have nowhere to live
- no further offer of accommodation will be made
- if you re-approach us for assistance, it's likely that you will be found intentionally homeless as you have refused an offer of suitable permanent accommodation.
After the review
If we change our decision following the review, this will replace the original decision. We will tell you our reasons for changing and take any action needed.
If the original decision stays the same we will write to to tell you the reasons for this.
If you are still not happy after the review
If you are still unhappy and your review is about a decision made on your homeless application, you have two options.
You can appeal to the County Court if:
- you are unhappy with the decision following the review procedure
- or we take longer than 56 days to tell you about our decision.
Your appeal must be about a point of law and cannot be about an issue of fact.
You must submit your appeal within 21 days of receiving our review decision. If your appeal is about not receiving that decision within the 56 day period allowed, then count that 21 days from the day on which you should have received our decision (56 + 21 days).
You may wish to seek independent advice from a solicitor, Citizens Advice or a housing advice agency.
If you are unahappy about a decision on your application for the Housing Needs Register, you can challenge this by judicial review, on the grounds that we have infringed a requirement of public or administrative law.
The Local Government and Social Care Ombudsman
If you feel we have treated you unfairly you can complain to the Local Government and Social Care Ombudsman.
This might be if you think we have:
- delayed taking action without good reason
- taken account of things that are irrelevant whilst ignoring things that are relevant
- not followed our own policy or complied with the law
- not kept promises made to you
- given you the wrong information
- not reached a decision in the correct way.
The Ombudsman is unlikely to investigate your complaint if you have not been through our review process first.
You must complain within 12 months.
The Ombudsman cannot deal with your complaint, if you are pursuing court proceedings.