Payment for self-isolating (Test and Trace Support Payment)

You might be able to get a payment of £500 if you’ve been told to self-isolate because of coronavirus (COVID-19) and you cannot work from home.

From 28 September 2020, those self-isolating will be entitled to a Test and Trace Support Payment of £500 if they:

  • have been told to stay at home and self-isolate by NHS Test and Trace, either because they have tested positive for coronavirus or have recently been in close contact with someone who has tested positive
  • are employed or self-employed
  • are unable to work from home and will lose income as a result
  • are currently receiving:
    • Universal Credit
    • Working Tax Credit
    • Income-based Employment and Support Allowance
    • Income-based Jobseeker’s Allowance
    • Income Support
    • Housing Benefit and/or;
    • Pension Credit

The Test and Trace Support Payment is designed to support people on low incomes who will lose income as a result of self-isolating. It is also designed to encourage people to get tested if they have symptoms. Getting tested and self-isolating are important to help stop the transmission of coronavirus and avoid further economic and social restrictions.

Eligible individuals can make a claim up to 28 days after their first day of the period of self-isolation. Applications cannot be accepted after this date. For example, a person who is instructed by NHS Test and Trace to self-isolate from 28 January must apply for the Test and Trace Support Payment by 25 February

Discretionary Payment

A £500 discretionary payment is available for individuals who:

  • have been told to stay at home and self-isolate by NHS Test and Trace, either because they have tested positive for coronavirus or have recently been in close contact with someone who has tested positive;
  • are employed or self-employed; and
  • are unable to work from home and will lose income as a result.

In addition, the discretionary payment is for people:

  • who are not currently receiving Universal Credit, Working Tax Credit, income-based Employment and Support Allowance, income-based Jobseeker’s Allowance, Income Support, Housing Benefit and/or Pension Credit; and
  • whose maximum weekly gross earnings are less than £327 per week.
  • who have no more than £6,000 in savings. Those with savings above this will not be eligible.
  • who are on low incomes and will face financial hardship as a result of not being able to work while they are self-isolating (in all cases applicants will have to demonstrate that they will suffer financial hardship as a result of having to self-isolate).
  • We will consider people who have applied for one of the listed benefits and are waiting for a decision, is currently appealing against a negative decision or is unable to apply for one of the qualifying benefits (as long as they meet the other statutory and discretionary criteria).
  • The same will apply to persons from abroad who are excluded from claiming benefits but meet all the other statutory and discretionary criteria.
  • University students or those in further or higher education are eligible to apply for a discretionary payment but must demonstrate a loss in income as a result of having to self-isolate and meet all of the other statutory and discretionary criteria.
  • If you do not meet all of the above criteria you will not be eligible for a discretionary award. To check what financial support is available to you, please visit COVID-19 money and finance or email [email protected].

There is limited funding from the government for the discretionary scheme. When the funding is spent, we will no longer be able to make awards, therefore we will monitor the scheme and may change the local criteria to ensure those in most need receive help.

These schemes will last until 31 March 2021.

For information on non financial support available for issues related to COVID-19 please visit our directory

Exemptions

You will not be eligible for the scheme if you:

  • are quarantining after travelling abroad (unless you test positive during the 14-day quarantine period).
  • continue to receive full wages while you self-isolate.
  • can work from home during a period of self-isolation.
  • are no longer required to self-isolate i.e. your period of self-isolation ended before the Self-Isolation Payment Scheme launched (28 September 2020).
  • have not received a notification from NHS Test and Trace telling you to self-isolate.

Apply

If you believe that you are eligible for this payment you should make an application.

Apply for test and trace support payment

If you are unable, for whatever reason, to apply online please contact us on:

Contact us

Due to the high volume of applications being received please do not contact us for an update on your application if you submitted it within the last 5 working days.

If you are self-isolating and require support in order to stay at home, please contact us.

If you wish to speak to someone at the council about getting support please call 01296 395000.

To see a list of local support groups and services near you, visit our online directory.