Test and trace support payment

The test and trace support payment has been announced in response to feedback 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 societal and economic restrictions, including local lockdowns.


Who will be eligible for the test and trace support payment?

To be eligible for the test and trace support payment via automatic criteria, an individual must:

  • have been asked to self-isolate by NHS Test and Trace (on or after 28 September 2020, if you were told to self-isolate prior to this date you are not eligible) either because they’ve 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.

To be eligible for the test and trace support payment via discretionary criteria, an individual must;

  • have been asked to self-isolate by NHS Test and Trace (on or after 28 September 2020, if you were told to self-isolate prior to this date you are not eligible) either because they’ve 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;
    • a single person earning below 20k or;
    • a family, a couple, or single person with children earning below 26k; and
    • have below 6k in savings.

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.


Will these payments be taxed?

These payments will be subject to income tax. They will not be subject to National Insurance contributions.


How to apply for the test and trace support payment?

Make an online application (or a telephone application if someone is not able to access digital services - 01952 380400)

Test and trace support payment

Supporting evidence will be required as follows:

  • a notification from NHS Test and Trace asking you to self-isolate (this will include a Unique ID number)
  • a bank statement and
  • proof of employment, or, if you are self-employed, evidence of self-assessment returns, trading income and proof that your business delivers services which cannot be undertaken without social contact
  • confirmation from your employer of reduced income during your period of isolation. Email from employer or contract of employment.

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 have been in contact with someone who has tested positive and has now been told to self- isolate by NHS Test and Trace.

Visit the NHS Test and Trace website.

Last updated: 20/10/2020 08:53