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Are you legally homeless?

The legal definition of ‘homelessness’ covers more than being out on the streets.  You will be considered homeless if: 

  • you have nowhere to live in the UK or anywhere else in the world; 
  • you can’t stay in your home because of violence or threats of violence; 
  • you have nowhere you can live together with your family or anyone else who lives or could reasonably be expected to live with you, for example your children, partner or carer; 
  • you don’t have permission to stay where you are, for example if you’re a squatter; 
  • you’ve been locked out of your home and are not allowed back; 
  • your home is a boat, mobile home or caravan and there is nowhere you are allowed to put it; 
  • you have somewhere to live but it isn’t reasonable for you to stay there. This may be due to serious overcrowding, very bad conditions affecting your health, or because you cannot afford your housing costs.

You can also apply to the council if you are likely to become homeless within 28 days.  This includes circumstances where: 

  • you’ve been taken to court by your landlord and the court has said you must leave within 28 days; 
  • you’ve been living with friends or relatives and they’ve asked you to leave within 28 days.