Test and Trace Support Payment

The Test and Trace Support Payment has been announced in response to feed back that some residents were struggling to self-isolate due to financial constraints. It is to ensure that people on low incomes self-isolate when they test positive or are identified as a contact, and to encourage more people to get tested. This will help reduce the transmission of COVID-19 and avoid further social and economic restrictions, including local lockdowns.

Who is eligible?

To be eligible for the Test and Trace Support Payment, an individual must:

  • Have been told to stay at home and self-isolate by NHS Test and Trace because you have tested positive for coronavirus, or
  • Have recently been in close contact with someone who has tested positive, and you are not fully vaccinated, or
  • Be a parent or guardian of a child who has tested positive and you need to stay at home to look after the child.
  • Be employed or self-employed
  • Be unable to work from home and will lose income as a result
  • 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.

If you are not in receipt of any of the benefits listed above, your application will be considered under the Discretionary Scheme. The funding for this scheme is limited.

Details of the Standard and Discretionary payment schemes

Both the Standard and Discretionary Test and Trace Support Payment schemes can be found here:

How much is the payment?

Individuals who are required to self-isolate and who meet the benefits-linked eligibility criteria will be entitled to £500. This will be payable as a lump sum.

How long will this be in place for?

The scheme will run until 30 September 2021. During this time, we will continue to review the success of the scheme, including the impact on COVID-19 levels.

Will these payments be taxed?

The Test and Trace Payment is taxable if you are a taxpayer, but it is not subject to National Insurance Contributions.

HMRC will automatically collect tax from your pay through your tax code, or self-employed recipients should report the payment on their 20/21 Self-Assessment tax return

Before you start

You will need the following information to complete this form:

  • A copy of your latest bank statement (one issued within the last two months, which must clearly show proof of earnings;
  • Proof of self-employment e.g. recent business bank statement (within the last two months), most recent set of accounts or evidence of self-assessment returns;
  • Proof of your NHS Account ID for coronavirus COVID-19 or;
  • Proof of the Account ID you have received from NHS Test and Trace to self-isolate
  • Your National Insurance Number

Supporting evidence about the child or young person

  • The child’s eight-digit NHS Test and Trace ID number. This is for parents and guardians of children or young people who have received a notification directly from NHS Test and Trace telling them to self-isolate.

How to apply

Make an online application (or a telephone application if someone is not able to access digital services)

Apply for a Test and Trace Support Payment here »

What am I required to do?

If you receive a Self-Isolation Payment you must self-isolate as requested by NHS Test and Trace.

Please visit the NHS website for more details of the NHS Test and Trace self-isolation requirements for those:

  • Testing positive and
  • Those who are not fully vaccinated, have been in contact with someone who has tested positive and have now been told to self- isolate by NHS Test and Trace.

Can the bank take this payment to pay my overdraft?

If your bank account is overdrawn you can request a first right of appropriation of funds. This is so that the money can be used for essential bills.

You would need to contact your bank as soon as you know the payment is due making clear that the payment is to be used to pay your bills and not your overdraft.

You can find an example letter that you can use here:

Local support

More local help is available for those instructed to self-isolate here:

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