Advice for vulnerable groups

Armed forces

Six months before you leave the Armed Forces, the MOD gives you a Certificate of Cessation of Entitlement. This has the date that you stop getting forces accommodation. You can stay in forces accommodation beyond the date on the certificate if you have nowhere to go. The MOD has to issue a 93-day Notice to Vacate . The MOD as a Public Authority also has a “Duty to Refer” to the Local Authority, any member of the armed services they believe is threatened with homelessness. See Shelter's website for further details.

This should trigger a homeless application and a Housing Options Officer will contact you.

You can also contact the Housing Options Team for advice as soon as you know you are leaving the armed forces and will have nowhere to live at

In the event that the MOD haven’t informed the Local Authority of your situation, eight weeks before the Certificate of Cessation expires you can make a homeless application online by visiting our Lichfield District Homes page and choosing the “Register as homeless or at threat of homelessness within 56 days” option.

See Our Homelessness Service page for further details.

You may be classed as having “Priority Need” and as such be awarded the Emergency Band on the Housing Register from Lichfield District Council if you are a former member of the armed forces, are homeless or threatened with homelessness and vulnerable as a result of your service. When deciding this, Lichfield District Council may consider:

  • how long you were in the forces and what role you had
  • if you spent any time in a military hospital
  • if you were released from service on medical grounds (and have a Medical History Release Form)
  • if you have had accommodation since leaving service and if you have been able to obtain or maintain accommodation since you left
  • how long it has been since you left service.

To help support your case, you may need to provide medical evidence from the MOD, including a Medical History Release Form (if you were given one).

In line with Armed Forces Covenant certain members of the Armed Forces community are exempt from any residency requirements which prevent local authorities from applying a local connection test as follows.

a. Those who are currently serving in the Regular Armed Forces or who were serving in the Regular Forces at any time in the 5 years preceding their application for an allocation of social housing.

b. Bereaved spouses or civil partners of those serving in the Regular Forces where (i) the bereaved spouse or civil partner has recently ceased, or will cease, to be entitled to reside in Ministry of Defence accommodation following the death of their Service spouse or civil partner, and (ii) the death was wholly or partly attributable to their service. There is also special provision in our allocations policy to award a priority for rehousing in this case and you should apply directly to the housing register.

c. Serving or former members of the Reserve Armed Forces who are suffering from a serious injury, illness or disability which is wholly or partly attributable to their service.

Further resources

Veterans Gateway

Citizens Advice

Veterans in Need



Alabare (Housing Project for veterans)