Roof FAQs

Accessibility

1.  Q: What is Roof's Legal Position?

2. Q: When is Roof open?

3. Q: What does Roof do?

4. Q: What kind of homelessness cases could Roof support me with?

5. Q: When can Roof take on a case and can Roof guarantee to take on a case?

6. Q: In what capacity can Roof assist me with securing a fair resolution from a government organisation whilst avoiding Court?

7. Q: In what capacity can Roof help me in Court?

8. Q: Do we charge Clients for our assistance?

9. Q: How do I make a donation?

10. Q: How do I find out about volunteering and paid employment within Gareth Group Law or Roof?

11. Q: I cannot afford the cost of the call, what can I do?

12. Q: Does Roof accept correspondence by postt?

13. Q: Can I contact Staff or Volunteers on Direct Dials/Direct Telephone Numbers?

14. Q: What should I do if I lose my Gareth Group ID (Including EIN, Customer Number or Correspondence Account Number or Client ID)?

15. Q: How do I know if there are any problems with The Gareth Group's systems and/or how long will I have to wait for a reply by either telephone, E-Correspondence or by Post/Fax?

16. Q: I have a disability and I am having difficulties getting through to The Gareth Group - do you have any arrangements in place to assist me?

17. Q: What is the difference between a Gareth Group Client, Caseworker, Correspondence Account Holder and Customer?

18. Q: What is the Gareth Group's policy on recording telephone calls?

19. Q: What is the Gareth Group's policy on Data Protection?

20. Q: I have a complaint/compliment or feedback - how do I pass this on?

21. Q: What is The Gareth Group's policy on discrimination?

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1. Q: What is Roof's Legal Position?

A: Please note we are not:

Barristers (Legal Services Act [2007] (S181)(1)),

Solicitors (Solicitors Act [1974] (S21))

An incorporated body (Administration of Justice Act [1985] (S9 and S9A)).

We are not regulated by the Law Society or the Solicitors Regulation Authority. As such we cannot give legal advice and none of our activities amount to the same.

"Roof" simply refers to our politically neutral interest in upholding fair access to and provision of services offered to people by the public sector and in lawfully campaigning for public bodies to adhere to legislation for the benefit of wider society.

Roof is also not a registered charity or business - we are a grassroots organisation. 

Any use whatsoever of this website and in particular the Gareth Group Law and Roof websites signifies your acceptance of this position.

2. Q: When is Roof open?

A: Roof's telephone lines are open from 11am-6pm Monday-Friday. Outside of these times you can leave a Voicemail. You can also complete a contact form (if you have a case specific enquiry, or you are looking for assistance from us, please skip the form to suggest a FAQ not included on this list, you will then be taken to our E-Correspondence and other contact details section. If your enquiry is a general enquiry, please simply suggest the FAQ you would like to see added. In this situation, you will not need to complete another contact form. 

3. Q: What does Roof do?

A: In a nutshell, we look to work with clients without stable housing to secure stable, secure housing. We look at client's rights, provide guidance on client's entitlements (in relation to housing, welfare benefits and other matters), we work with other organisations to support clients with issues including mental and physical health problems and addictions and offending behaviours. Finally, we give the first refusal for non specialist voluntary and paid roles within our businesses and within Roof and GGL to those who would otherwise not be able to seek employment through either a criminal record or a lack of a stable employment history. We do have to assess protection for vulnerable people and there will some positions which would be inappropriate for those with a criminal record where the client's historic crimes relate to the abuse of vulnerable people, where the criminal history could reasonably put vulnerable people at risk in the future and where fraud or dishonesty were involved. In these cases, we look to offer volunteering and paid employment in other non-critical areas of the Gareth Group.  Most of all, the Gareth Group is non judgmental to all who are attempting to rebuild their lives. 

4. Q: What kind of homelessness cases could Roof support me with?

A: Roof looks to identify any failings by a Local Authority to somebody who is either street homeless, sofa surfing, or living in insecure accommodation. We rarely find a Local Authority that do not, at one time or another, look to shirk their responsibilities to people who are homeless in one way or another. The levels of support that you are entitled to very much depends on your current circumstances and the circumstances behind why you are homeless in the first place. If you cannot get assistance from any other organisation, a Solicitor or a Barrister, we will look to take on your case. Please remember, we are not Solicitors or Barristers ourselves and we cannot give legal advice but we can point you in the right direction, assist you to research your rights and to put your complaint/case together i.e. fill in forms and help you to present your file of documents. 

5. Q: When can Roof take on a case and can Roof guarantee to take on a case?

A; Roof can only take on cases where all other avenues of assistance have been exhausted. This is because registered charities, unlike Roof receive funding that, even if we were a registered charity, we would be unlikely to be able to claim for when another charity is receiving funding to provide the same service. We most often do take on cases that charities and other organisations cannot assist with or where they have failed to assist appropriately. We would expect to see evidence of the organisations that you have attempted to secure support from first. We can never guarantee to take on a case but we will try our best, dependent on availability, to take on your case. There may be a delay and in some circumstances, regretfully, we may not be able to assist. Taking on cases is a decision solely made at the discretion of Roof. 

6. Q: In what capacity can Roof assist me with securing a fair resolution from a government organisation whilst avoiding Court?

A: Where a potential client comes to us and asks for assistance, we first look, wherever appropriate to attempt to resolve problems informally. At this stage, we do not charge Correspondence Account Holders (the subject of the complaint). If the subject of the complaint does not resolve the complaint fairly, we will assist clients to pursue the formal complaints process. If the formal complaints process does not work, we will then escalate the case to the Ombudsman or to a Court of Tribunal. If the case is significantly urgent, we will look to assist clients with taking the case to court urgently. In the first instance, we can assist you with the paperwork. 

7. Q: In what capacity can Roof help me in Court?

A: We may be able to..

- Act as a McKenzie Friend..

We derive our discretionary power to quietly assist or to otherwise present a case with the Court's authority and at their discretion as a McKenzie friend (McKenzie v McKenzie [1970] 3WLR 472 3 ALL ER 1034 CA)

- Act as a Litigation Friend..

At the Court and other organisation's discretion, we may be able to offer representation as non-legal Advocates for those who lack capacity (Mental Capacity Act 2005) although the preferred choice, wherever possible, would be through the HM Government's Official Solicitor's Office. If they cannot assist, we may be able to. 

- Act as Litigants in Person..

Where Caseworkers and Senior non-legal Advocates experience an injustice themselves and they reasonably believe that wider society are likely to be adversely affected by the same issue, our Caseworkers and Senior non-legal Advocates are encouraged to make constructive complaints to the organisations concerned, where appropriate to escalate these to Ombudsmans and finally to Court or Tribunals where the issue is not resolved. 

Roof Advocates are not Legal Advocates and our work is solely carried out in the United Kingdom.

8. Q: Do we charge Clients for our assistance?

A: No, we don't charge our clients in the majority of circumstances. Legally, we have an entitlement to claim back our fees for the costs of assisting clients alongside our expenses. We do not intend and nor do we make a profit. Initially, the invoice will be your responsibility. If the client agrees to cooperate with us in pursuing the debt from the subject of the complaint (Correspondence Account Holder), and we are not successful in recuperating the cost, we will not enforce fees to our clients. If our clients are persistently uncontactable at the end of the case, are persistently and unreasonably uncontactable during the case, or if the client is unreasonable in their behaviour towards us, we have a right, under all and every circumstance to terminate our support and in some circumstances to pursue the client for costs related to our work and for associated expenses. Any services invoiced for never amount to legal advice and we make what we charge for clear to clients from the offset. 

9. Q: How do I make a donation?

We welcome donations, you can either telephone us between 11am - 6pm by skipping the form below to suggest the addition of a FAQ to obtain our contact details or you can complete a form. Thank you for considering supporting our work. We also have a list of items that we need, if you have any second hand equipment, such as computers and computer components, laptops, IP Phones, mobile phones, printers, networking equipment and any other IT equipment and we always benefit from assistance with the supply and branding of comfortable and warm identifiable clothing for homeless outreach and official occasions and fundraising events. If you have any other equipment you feel we might benefit from, please do contact us, it is likely we would otherwise have to purchase this equipment through donations anyway so we would be very grateful - thank you. Where we operate a homeless outreach project, our client's similarly benefit from toiletries, food, clothing and bedding that we can donate (please kindly ensure that any clothing is clean) - thanks again. 

10. Q: How do I find out about volunteering and paid employment within Gareth Group Law or Roof?

A: Please select the "Human Resources" link at the very top of our website (near the clock). We always give priority to people who have been homeless, are the most unable to gain other volunteering and work opportunities and who have demonstrated to us that they are committed to turning their lives around. 

11. Q: I cannot afford the cost of the call, what can I do?

A: If you are a potential new Client or you are an existing Client, please skip the form at the bottom of this page to submit a FAQ not included and you will then be taken to our E-Correspondence and other contact details section where there is also a form to request a callback. Please note, we can only call Landlines but this could be a Landline at a friend's home, a family member's, a charity or other organisation's office or a payphone. You could also complete another of our forms in the same section to correspond with us by Email. 

12. Q: Does Roof accept correspondence by post?

A: At this time, due to the structure of the organisation, we don't. You can fax us or complete one of the contact forms by the method described in the previous question. 

13. Q: Can I contact Staff or Volunteers on Direct Dials/Direct Telephone Numbers?

A; The short answer is no and this is deliberate in order to ensure fairness to all callers. You may see direct dials in Emails from The Gareth Group Staff or Volunteers, these will only work internally and are intended for use by Colleagues only. If you are allocated a Gareth Group ID Number, please specify this on the telephone at the Data Protection prompt, the system will then attempt to contact the assigned caseworker/Account Representative first before transferring to a trained representative within the International Contact Centre. 

14. Q: What should I do if I lose my Gareth Group ID (Including EIN, Customer Number or Correspondence Account Number or Client ID)?

A: Please select the department or organisation concerned from the right, please look for this question again and select the relevant link to the online E-Correspondence Form.  

15. Q: How do I know if there are any problems with The Gareth Group's systems and/or how long will I have to wait for a reply by either telephone, E-Correspondence or by Post/Fax?

A: Please check the service status ticker at the top of every webpage on The Gareth Group website, this can be found directly underneath the Gareth Group organisations menu. 

16. Q: I have a disability and I am having difficulties getting through to The Gareth Group - do you have any arrangements in place to assist me?

A: Yes, we do. If you call our normal telephone number but dial 888 upon the automated system (IVR) answering, you will be transferred through to an Assistance Operator who will route your call. Unfortunately, we do not yet have a textphone system but please feel free to complete a contact form if you do not find the answer to your question in our FAQs section first. If this system is abused to bypass our normal telephone queues, we will transfer you back to our main IVR without exception. This is because we must be fair to those on low incomes contacting us and queuing to be transferred to an International Contact Centre Representative who may very well be trained in processing calls and enquiries for multiple departments or organisations within the Gareth Group. 

17. Q: What is the difference between a Gareth Group Client, Caseworker, Correspondence Account Holder and Customer?

A: A Gareth Group Client would be a Client of either Gareth Group Law or Roof and would be the person seeking assistance from us, A Caseworker is an Employee or Volunteer of either Gareth Group Law or Roof, a Correspondence Account Holder is unique to both Gareth Group Law and Roof and is either a case contact (for example an Ombudsman) or the actual Correspondence Account Holder who is responsible for the case needing to be bought to the attention of a Court, Tribunal, Ombudsman or other Body and is ultimately the organisation or person who will be sent an invoice for our Client's costs - we add our costs to our Client's invoice, we then support them with raising a claim to the Correspondence Account Holder concerned. For more information about these positions, please select the relevant organisation on the right and have a look at our FAQs specific to that Organisation or Department. 

18. Q: What is the Gareth Group's policy on recording telephone calls?

A: For training, quality and security purposes, we reserve the right to record any call associated with a division or organisation listed on the right of this page. 

19. Q: What is the Gareth Group's policy on Data Protection?

A; The short version of our Data Protection policy is that we have a duty to ensure, to the best of our ability, that your data remains confidential. The exception is where we have a duty to disclose information by law if there is any immediate danger to you or the public or where we believe that there is any indication of serious organised crime or terrorism. Under such circumstances we may not be able to inform you where we have an obligation to pass this information on. Where you or another person is in danger, we will do our best to provide the most minimal information possible whilst ensuring the safety of vulnerable people.

20. Q: I have a complaint/compliment or feedback - how do I pass this on?

A: We welcome all feedback and compliments and ensure that we log the same and pass on the information to the Employee or Volunteer concerned, where we can identify them. We thank you in advance for taking the time to contact us. If you have a complaint, we take all complaints seriously, you should first visit the Direction and Strategy Frequently Asked Questions regardless of whether your intended contact relates to feedback, compliments or complaints. 

21. Q: What is The Gareth Group's policy on discrimination?

A: All of our staff and volunteers are trained to treat everybody equally regardless of creed, race, sexuality, religion, political persuasion, disability or any other factor. If you have any negative experiences, we encourage you to make a complaint by visiting our Direction and Strategy FAQs. If you feel that you simply have not been supported very well due to such a factor as listed above or similar, then please do let us know if there is something that we can do to better assist you. The first thing that will help us to help you is to let us know of any special requirements you have by speaking to an International Contact Centre Representative first. We will do our best to assist you. We are however financially limited. 

Can't find what you are looking for? Please suggest a FAQ that you would like added..

Case Specific Question - Please click here to skip to other Contact Methods

 

FAQS relating to Roof only - Please otherwise select the division or organisation on the top right before completing this form.

 

Important Note

Please note we are not:

Barristers (Legal Services Act [2007] (S181)(1)),

Solicitors (Solicitors Act [1974] (S21)) 

An incorporated body (Administration of Justice Act [1985] (S9 and S9A)).

We are not regulated by the Law Society or the Solicitors Regulation Authority. As such we cannot give legal advice and none of our activities amount to the same.

"Gareth Group Law" simply refers to our politically neutral interest in upholding fair access to and provision of services offered to people by the public sector and in lawfully campaigning for public bodies to adhere to legislation for the benefit of wider society. 

Any use whatsoever of this website and in particular the Gareth Group Law and Roof websites signifies your acceptance of this position.

We may be able to..

Act as a McKenzie Friend

We derive our discretionary power to quietly assist or to otherwise present a case with the Court's authority and at their discretion as a McKenzie friend (McKenzie v McKenzie [1970] 3WLR 472 3 ALL ER 1034 CA) or otherwise as Litigants in Person.

 

Gareth Group Law Advocates are not Legal Advocates and our work is solely carried out in the United Kingdom.

© 2016 Gareth Group - E&EO - All Rights Reserved.