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Test and Trace Self Isolation Support payments

Since 28 September 2020, residents are required by law to self-isolate if they test positive for Covid-19, or are identified by NHS Test and Trace as a close contact. From 8 March 2021, parents or guardians who are not legally required to self-isolate can apply for a Test and Trace Support Payment or discretionary payment if they need to take time off work to care for a child or young person who is. From 16 August 2021, residents who are fully vaccinated and identified by NHS Test and Trace as a close contact are no longer required to self-isolate.

To support residents whose earnings are affected by staying at home and isolating, the Government has set up the Test and Trace Support Payment Scheme. Eligible residents who have been contacted by NHS Test and Trace, been told to self-isolate, and received an eight-character account ID, may be entitled to a one-off payment of £500. If you have any questions about your Test and Trace NHS ID you can contact the NHS Test & Trace telephone helpline directly by calling 119.

Eligibility

If you meet all of the following eligibility criteria, you are entitled to a Test and Trace Support Payment of £500:

  • Your main/permanent home address must be in the London Borough of Islington
  • You must have been told to stay at home and self-isolate by NHS Test and Trace or via the NHS Covid-19 App, either because you have tested positive for coronavirus or have recently been in close contact with someone who has tested positive and are not fully vaccinated; AND you must have responded to messages received from NHS Test and Trace (which will have been received via a combination of email, text, letter or phone call) and provided your contact details and if you have tested positive, the details of your contacts
  • You must have a valid notification from NHS Test and Trace which will include a Unique 8 digit ID number
  • You must be actively employed or self-employed
  • You must currently be actively employed or self-employed; you can apply if you are partially furloughed but are still working part-time.
  • You must be unable to work from home and will lose income as a result; and
  • You must be receiving, or are the partner of someone in the same household who is 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
  • You have recourse to public funds
  • You must complete and submit the Test & Trace support payment application form no later than 42 days after the first day of your self-isolation period

Discretionary payments

You will be eligible for a £500 discretionary payment if you meet all the other eligibility criteria above, but you:

  • Do not currently receive Universal Credit, Working Tax Credit, income-based Employment and Support Allowance, income-based Jobseeker’s Allowance, Income Support, Housing Benefit and/or Pension Credit
  • Are on a low income and will face financial hardship as a result of not being able to work while self- isolating. A low income is on average £500 per week or less, or £600 per week or less if you are responsible for a child of under 18 living in the same household as you
  • Have no recourse to public funds or
  • Are in receipt of a Personal Independence Payment, State Retirement Pension or a Council Tax Support payment or
  • Are in the process of claiming for or appealing for Universal Credit, Working Tax Credit, income-based Employment and Support Allowance, income-based Jobseeker’s Allowance, Income Support, Housing Benefit and/or Pension Credit and able to provide the evidence
  • You must complete and submit the Test & Trace support payment application form no later than 42 days after the first day of your self-isolation period.

If you do not meet one of these additional criteria but still believe you will suffer significant financial challenges during your self-isolation period, please complete the form as this will allow you to be referred to the Council’s Income Maximisation (iMax) team. They will be able to discuss your financial challenges and may be able to offer a discretionary payment. Further information is available through our Frequently Asked Questions. 

If you are applying because you need to take time off work to care for a child or young person who is legally required to self-isolate you must meet all the criteria below:

  • They 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 while they self-isolate. This is limited to one parent or guardian per household for the child or young person’s self-isolation period.
  • They are employed or self-employed
  • They cannot work from home while undertaking caring responsibilities and will lose income as a result.
  • They meet all the other means-tested eligibility criteria for a Test and Trace Support Payment or locally determined criteria for a discretionary payment.
  • Their child or young person: is aged 15 or under (or 25 or under with an Education, Health and Care Plan (EHC) and normally attends an education or childcare setting.
  • Has been told to self-isolate by NHS Test and Trace because they have tested positive for Covid-19 or are over 18 and under 25, with an EHC, and has been told to self-isolate by their education setting because they have been identified as a close contact of someone who has tested positive for Covid-19. 

The child or young person must have been told to self-isolate on or after 8 March 2021.

Claims made by parents and guardians can be made up to six weeks (42 days) after the child or young person’s first day of self-isolation.

Please ensure you have one of the following pieces of supporting evidence available about the child or young person before starting the application:

  • 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.
  • A communication from the young person’s education setting confirming that they have to self-isolate. This is for parents and guardians of young people 18 - 25, who have not been fully vaccinated and have been told to self-isolate by their education setting because they have been identified as a close contact of someone who has tested positive
  • A screenshot of a young person’s NHS Covid-19 App notification telling them to self-isolate and evidence that the young person has an Education, Health and Care Plan

You will need to upload copies of these documents. They should be scans or photos.

How to apply

You can apply for a Test and Trace support payment or Discretionary payment using the form at the link below.

This form will take approximately 10 minutes to complete and must be filled out in one session.

Please ensure that you have the below information available before starting the application:

  • National Insurance Number
  • Your 8-character NHS Test and Trace Account ID
  • A valid email address, without this you will not be able to proceed.
  • Your most recent bank statement, this needs to show your name and address. This is the account we will pay your support payment into.
  • Your most recent wage slip or proof of self-employment; for example, this could be your latest self-assessment tax return or evidence of your trading income.
  • If you are applying because you need to take time off work to care for a child or young person who is legally required to self-isolate you will need one of the pieces of evidence listed above.

You will need to upload copies of these documents. They should be scans or photos.

This form will take approximately 10 minutes to complete and must be completed all at once as you will not be able to come back to the form.

If you need help in filling out the form, or if you are unable to provide the documents at the same time you submit your application, please contact We are Islington.

Please note that it will take up to seven working days to process your payment. We will confirm in writing to you when the payment has been sent to your bank.

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