Test and Trace Support Payments

£500 payment scheme for people who must self-isolate

Test and trace support payments are part of a new legal duty for people to self-isolate, which came into force on 28 September, and ensures that those on low incomes are able to self-isolate without worrying about their finances. Government has asked local authorities to administer the payments.

To be eligible for the £500 lump-sum test and trace support payment, you must meet the following criteria for the national scheme:

  • have been instructed to self-isolate by NHS Test and Trace, either because you have tested positive or are the close contact of a positive case; or
  • you are the parent or guardian of a child or young person in the same household
    and need to take time off work to care for them because they have been told to self-isolate on or after 8 March 2021. This is limited to one parent or guardian per household for the child or young person’s self-isolation period. (Note, we will be accepting applications from week commencing 01 April 2021); and
  • are employed or self-employed; and
  • are unable to work from home and will lose income as a result; and
  • are 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

In addition to this you can also apply if you meet the following criteria for the local discretionary scheme:

  • have been told to stay at home and 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; or
  • you are the parent or guardian of a child or young person in the same household
    and need to take time off work to care for them because they have been told to self-isolate on or after 8 March 2021. This is limited to one parent or guardian per household for the child or young person’s self-isolation period. (Note, we will be accepting applications from week commencing 01 April 2021); and
  • are employed or self-employed and working for over 16 hours per week; and
  • are unable to work from home and will lose income as a result; and
  • are awaiting a benefits decision or the outcome of a benefits appeal; or
  • would have normally received universal credit or working tax credit but the previous months income assessment was higher than usual or
  • are not in receipt of Universal Credit, Working Tax Credit, income-based Employment and Support Allowance, income-based Jobseeker’s Allowance, Income Support, Housing Benefit and/or Pension Credit; or
  • have no recourse to public funds and
  • are facing extreme financial hardship as a result of COVID-19;

You will need to provide the following:

  • National Insurance number
  • a notification from NHS Test and Trace to self-isolate (this will include a Unique ID number) 
  • a recent bank statement
  • proof of employment, or, if you are self-employed, evidence of self-assessment returns, trading income and proof that their business delivers services which cannot be undertaken without social contact.  

Please apply online at https://newcastle.gov.uk/TestandTraceSupportPayments

The scheme started on 28 September 2020 and will run until 30 June 2021.

Applications must be received no later than 42 days after the first day of your period of self-isolation.

Once your application has been verified, payments will be made directly into your bank account within three working days.

If you are unable to complete an online application form please call 0191 278 7878, ask for Crisis Support and select option 2.

Office opening hours are Monday to Friday 9.30am to 3.30pm (please note there is no out of hours service)

The scheme will run until 30 June 2021.

Advice and support

If you are self-isolating and need support or information, please visit our CityLife Line page: www.newcastle.gov.uk/citylifeline

More information can be found on the Council Covid-19 page: www.newcastle.gov.uk/coronavirus

If you are on a low income and would like some information about the help and support available please visit Newcastle City Council Benefits page: www.newcastle.gov.uk/benefits

You can also get independent financial advice from:

Did you know?

Discretionary payments

You can apply for test and trace support payment if you meet the  criteria but are waiting for a benefits decision or the outcome of a benefits appeal; or would normally have received universal credit or working tax credit but the previous months income assessment was higher than usual.  Please complete the form on this page.

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