Ensuring that individuals isolate when they have Covid-19 is one of the most powerful ways to control transmission of the virus.
This is because someone can remain infectious to others for up to 10 days after developing symptoms. Even before that, it can take up to 14 days to develop symptoms after catching Coronavirus, and during this time people can pass it on without realising - even if they don't show any symptoms.
By self-isolating, individuals can help prevent family, friends and others in the community from contracting Coronavirus, as well as helping to protect the health services.
Because this can cause financial pressure for those on low incomes and the self-employed, the Government has set up a new Test and Trace Support Payment of a £500 lump sum payment to support them if they cannot work during their self-isolation period.
Please check this page for further updates on when and how to apply.
Who will be eligible?
To be eligible for the Test and Trace Support Payment, you must:
have been asked to self-isolate by NHS Test and Trace either because you have tested positive for Coronavirus or have recently been in close contact with someone who has tested positive;
be employed or self-employed;
be unable to work from home and will lose income as a result; and
be 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.
How much is the payment?
Individuals who are required to self-isolate and who meet the eligibility criteria will be entitled to £500 payable as a lump sum.
Will these payments be taxed?
These payments will be subject to income tax. They will not be subject to National Insurance contributions.
How long will this be in place for?
The scheme will run until 31 January 2021 and be continually reviewed.
When will this come into force?
Applications can be made to your local council from the 12 October 2020.
Those required to self-isolate from 28 September will be able to apply and request that the payment be backdated to 28 September 2020. This is the date that the Government is introducing the Test and Trace Support Payment.
No claim can be backdated before 28 September.
What evidence will I need to provide to apply for the payment? (This can be scanned or photographed and attached to the application form)
- evidence of your NHS Test and Trace ID notification (this will include a Unique ID number)
- a bank statement and proof of employment, or, if they are self-employed, evidence of self-assessment returns, trading income and proof that their business delivers services which cannot be undertaken without social contact.
What if my self-isolation started before 28 September but ends after 28 September?
You must have been advised on or after 28 of September 2020 to isolate in order to be eligible for the payment.
How many times can I apply?
If you are required to isolate more than once, you can claim again if you are given a reference number from the test and trace system.
How quickly will I receive the payment?
Due to the unprecedented amount of applications received over the Christmas period there is now a delay in processing claims. You will be contacted by the Test and Trace Team when they process your application.
Will the information I give be safe and secured?
Please see our privacy notice to see how you data is processed and kept safe