Test and trace support payments have been introduced for those on lower incomes who must self-isolate but can’t work from home and will lose income as a result.
These £500 payments are designed to help everyone comply with self-isolation rules and stop the spread of coronavirus. Anyone who does not self-isolate following a positive coronavirus test or after being told to self-isolate by NHS Test and Trace could face fines.
Who can apply for payments?
To qualify for a £500 test and trace payment you must:
- have been told to self-isolate by NHS Test and Trace since 28 September
- be employed or self-employed but unable to work from home
- face a loss of income as a result of self-isolating
- currently be receiving at least one of the following benefits:
- Universal Credit
- Working Tax Credit
- income-based Employment and Support Allowance
- income-based Jobseeker’s Allowance
- Income Support
- Housing Benefit
- Pension Credit.
If you are not receiving one of these benefits but are facing financial difficulties because you have been asked to self-isolate, you may still be entitled to help under our discretionary scheme. You can apply through the same application form.
You will not be eligible for payment if you:
- have not been told to self-isolate by NHS Test and Trace
- will not have any loss of earnings due to self-isolating
- don’t apply within 14 days of your period of self-isolation finishing
- started or finished self-isolating before the 28 September
- are quarantining after travelling abroad – unless you have been told to self-isolate by NHS Test and Trace
How to apply?
You can apply for a test and trace support payment by filling in our online form. If you know someone who may qualify but is not online, they can call 02392 616708 for help with their application.
Please make sure you have the following information to hand before starting your application to avoid any potential delay in making your payment:
- Your NI number
- Your 8 digit test and trace ID number
- Your most recent bank statement and bank account details
- Proof of employment e.g. a wage slip or recent bank statement clearly showing proof of your earnings
- Or, proof of self-employment e.g. recent business bank statement, most recent set of accounts, or evidence of self-assessment returns
Please note, you may face prosecution if you have manipulated or falsified your position in order to obtain these payments. Any payment made as a result of fraud may be subject to recovery action, as may any payment made in error.
Frequently asked questions
Where can I find further financial advice and support?
There is further financial advice and support available in the following places:
- On the Portsmouth City Council website you can find out more about sick pay, help with council tax and food banks.
- Advice Portsmouth offers free, confidential advice on bills, benefits, debt and employment call 023 9279 4340, text 07789 550593 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Citizens Advice Portsmouth can help you check you’re receiving all the benefits you’re entitled to, call 0800 144 8 444 or use the online webchat. You can also use the free online benefits calculators at turn2us.org.uk
- Portsmouth City Council tenants can get money advice through the housing office. If you are a housing association tenant, your housing officer may be able to help.
- HIVE Portsmouth can connect you with the help you need – from support with food or school uniform, to mental health support or legal advice.
- There is support available to students who are self-isolating through the University of Portsmouth.