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Wales: notice of end of duty

This content applies to Wales

Requirements of the notice that authorities must send to applicants in all cases where they decide that the duties under Part 2 of the Housing (Wales) Act 2014 have ended.

Notice of end of duty

A local authority must send the applicant a notice of end of duty when it decides that one of the following duties has ended:[1]

Form and content

The notice must be in writing and:

  • state the reasons why the authority considers the duty has ended, and
  • inform the applicant that s/he has the right to request a review within 21 days.

If a 'help to secure' duty has ended because 56 days have elapsed or because the authority considers that reasonable steps have been taken to help to secure suitable accommodation but without success, the notice must also include details of the steps taken by the authority and the outcome of those steps. If an authority is unable to evidence that it used the 56 days to ensure that reasonable steps were taken, then it could be subject to challenge by the applicant.[2]

Guidance

The Code of Guidance for Local Authorities in Wales states that, where applicable, the notice should also include:[3]

  • a clear statement that the authority is satisfied that any accommodation offered is suitable for the applicant and likely to last for at least six months, and the reasons why it believes this
  • information about internal review procedures and time limits
  • advice to the applicant that s/he can seek independent legal or other advice and independent representation in review procedures.

The applicant should be able to fully understand why the duty has ended and, where possible, the authority should try to explain the decision in person as well as in writing, particularly when the applicant may have difficulty understanding the consequence of the ending of the duty and the right to request a review.

Service

Where the notice cannot be sent to the applicant, or where the authority believes it may not have been received, the applicant can be treated as having been notified if the notice is made available at the housing office for a reasonable period for collection by the applicant or her/his representative.[4]

Template

An example of notice of end of duty is included in Annex 19 of the Code of Guidance for Local Authorities in Wales. However, authorities are not obliged to use this template.

Applications made before 27 April 2015

The provisions in Part 2 of the Housing (Wales) Act 2014 apply to homelessness applications made to local authorities in Wales on or after 27 April 2015.

For the law applicable to applications made in Wales before that date, contact Shelter Cymru.

[1] s.84 Housing (Wales) Act 2014.

[2] paras 15.51 to 15.54 Code of Guidance for Local Authorities on the Allocation of Accommodation and Homelessness, Welsh Government, March 2016.

[3] para 15.94 Code of Guidance for Local Authorities on the Allocation of Accommodation and Homelessness, Welsh Government, March 2016.

[4] s.84(4) Housing (Wales) Act 2014; para 15.96 Code of Guidance for Local Authorities on the Allocation of Accommodation and Homelessness, Welsh Government, March 2016.

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