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The Homeless Persons Advice and Assistance Regulations (Northern Ireland) 2011

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Citation and commencement

1.  These Regulations may be cited as the Homeless Persons Advice and Assistance Regulations (Northern Ireland) 2011 and shall come into operation on 1st November 2011.

Application

2.  These Regulations shall have effect only in relation to an applicant where the Executive has, on or after the date on which these Regulations come into operation, decided that it is satisfied that the applicant is homeless or threatened with homelessness.

Types of advice to be provided by the Executive

3.  The types of advice set out in regulation 4 are prescribed for the purposes of Articles 10(3)(b), 10(4) and 11(3) of the Housing (Northern Ireland) Order 1988.

4.  The types of advice referred to in regulation 3 are—

(a)Housing advice including

(i)advice on the availability of permanent accommodation provided by the Executive or registered housing associations;

(ii)advice on the availability of temporary accommodation provided by the Executive, registered housing associations and other private, public or voluntary bodies;

(iii)advice on waiting lists and any restrictions imposed by landlords;

(iv)advice on specialist, supported or furnished accommodation;

(v)advice on services provided by estate agents and accommodation agencies; and

(vi)advice on owner occupation including co-ownership and the availability of grants for improvement, repair and adaptation by owner-occupiers;

(b)advice on social issues including advice on services provided by specialist agencies or bodies dealing with health, welfare or other social issues;

(c)financial advice, including—

(i)advice on the availability of personal benefits, grants and loans directly or indirectly related to the provision of housing;

(ii)advice on rent and mortgage arrears and the financial implications of home ownership;

(iii)advice on the management of personal finance;

(iv)advice on rent guarantee and deposit schemes; and

(v)advice on specialist agencies providing financial advice to individuals;

(d)advice on legal procedures and services, including—

(i)advice on court proceedings;

(ii)advice on legal rights including—

(aa)advice on the availability of legal aid; and

(bb)advice on the availability of independent advice ad advocacy.

Types of assistance to be provided by the Executive

5.  The types of assistance set out in regulation 6 are prescribed for the purposes of Articles 10(3)(b), 10(4) and 11(3) of the Housing (Northern Ireland) Order 1988.

6.  The types of assistance referred to in regulation 5 are—

(a)providing a personal interview at such time and place, and with an officer of the Executive of such sex, as the applicant may reasonably request;

(b)providing an interpreter or an independent personal representative for an applicant at any interview if a request is made by the applicant to that effect and reasonable notice is given;

(c)providing a written record of any interview held under this regulation in an appropriate form for the applicant including Braille, translation or large print;

(d)providing for a follow up interview to review progress;

(e)arranging and facilitating interviews and appointments with providers of housing, legal, financial or social care services; and

(f)providing access to mediation services for family and neighbour disputes and harassment.

Sealed with the Official Seal of the Department for Social Development on 28th September 2011.

Legal seal

Jim Wilkinson

A senior officer of the

Department for Social Development

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