Claiming financial support under the Test and Trace Support Payment scheme

 

 

The £500 Test and Trace Support Payment is for people on low incomes who have to self-isolate because they have:

  • tested positive for COVID-19 following a PCR test or an assisted lateral flow device (LFD) test; or

  • been notified as a close contact of someone who has tested positive for COVID-19 and they are not exempt from self-isolation. This guidance sets out who is exempt.

You may be eligible if you are employed or self-employed, cannot work from home, and will lose income as a result. The parent or guardian of a child or young person who is self-isolating may also be eligible for the Test and Trace Support Payment.

If you have been told to self-isolate by NHS Test and Trace, you are legally required to do so. If you have been notified by the NHS COVID-19 app to self-isolate and you apply for the Test and Trace Support Payment, you will also be legally required to self-isolate.

If you have tested positive on a self-reported (home) LFD test, you will not be eligible for the Test and Trace Support Payment unless you take a follow-up PCR test, and the result is positive.

Who can apply

You may be eligible for a £500 payment to support you during self-isolation if you live in England and you:

  • have been told to stay at home and self-isolate by NHS Test and Trace or the NHS COVID-19 app because you have tested positive for COVID-19; or

  • have been told to stay at home and self-isolate by NHS Test and Trace or the NHS COVID-19 app because you have been identified as a close contact of someone who has tested positive for COVID-19, and you are not exempt from self-isolation; and

  • have responded to messages from NHS Test and Trace and have provided any legally required information, such as details of your close recent contacts

  • are employed or self-employed

  • are unable to work from home and will lose income as a result of self-isolating

  • are currently receiving or are the partner of someone in the same household who is 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 on one of these benefits, you might still be eligible for a £500 discretionary payment if all the following apply:

  • you meet all the other criteria listed above

  • you’re on a low income

  • you will face financial hardship as a result of self-isolating

Your local council will tell you what counts as low income and financial hardship, and whether you are eligible.

If you are the parent or guardian of a child or young person who has been told to self-isolate

A parent or guardian may be eligible for support via the Test and Trace Support Payment scheme if they live in England and meet the following criteria (even if they are exempt from self-isolation):

  • they are the parent or guardian of a young person in the same household who is self-isolating and need to take time off work to care for them

  • they are unable to work from home and will lose income

  • the young person is:

    • aged 15 or under and has been told to stay at home and self-isolate by NHS Test and Trace because they have tested positive for COVID-19; or

    • aged 25 or under with an Education, Health and Care (EHC) Plan and been told to stay at home and self-isolate by NHS Test and Trace because they have tested positive for COVID-19; or

    • aged 25 and under, has an EHC Plan, and has been told to stay at home and self-isolate by NHS Test and Trace (or advised to do so by the NHS COVID-19 app) because they are the close contact of someone with COVID-19 and they are not exempt from self-isolation

  • the parent or guardian meets all the other criteria for a Test and Trace Support Payment or a discretionary payment

Other support

Find out more about:

If you are eligible for either the Test and Trace Support Payment or a discretionary payment, you’ll receive the £500 payment in addition to any benefits and Statutory Sick Pay that you receive currently.