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CIH Scotland

New Arrivals

Who is eligible for a housing allocation or homelessness assistance?

This page is for new arrivals. If you are a housing adviser please click here for information more relevant to you.

To get help if you are homeless or to go on to the council housing register, you must be eligible. The law defines who is and is not eligible, in terms of immigration status and habitual residence. The law is different for people from within the European Economic Area (EEA) and the UK and those from elsewhere.

EEA nationals

To be eligible for housing, EEA nationals must have a right to reside in the UK:

People from outside the EEA

Citizens of countries from outside the EEA are generally subject to immigration control and need permission to enter or remain in the UK. The eligibility rules say that only some people subject to immigration control are eligible:

Most other people from outside Europe are not eligible for housing and homelessness help. Social work departments may be able to help some people (e.g. people with social care needs) get accommodation in emergencies. There are also special services for people fleeing domestic abuse. There may also be some help available from charities for people who are homeless and destitute.

Background Topics

Chartered Institute of Housing Scotland