Apply for a Test and Trace Support Payment

You might be able to get a payment of £500 if you’re on a low income and meet all these conditions:

  • you’re employed or self-employed
  • you, or a child you’re the parent or guardian of, has tested positive for coronavirus (COVID-19), or been told you or the child are a close contact by NHS Test and Trace
  • you cannot work from home and will lose income by self-isolating or staying at home to care for the child
  • you’re not exempt from self-isolating

You can still claim if it’s your child who has been told to self-isolate.

You need to claim within 42 days of you or the child’s first day of self-isolation.

If you’re employed, you’ll pay tax on the payment if you go over your tax-free personal allowance. Your tax code will change to collect the tax. You will not pay National Insurance contributions on the payment.

You must report the payment on your Self Assessment tax return if you need to file one, for example if you’re self-employed.

Where you can get the payment

The payment is only available in England.

You might be eligible for the self-isolation support scheme in Wales, the self-isolation support grant in Scotland or support if you’re in Northern Ireland.

If you’re usually working and get benefits

You can apply for the payment if you meet all of the following conditions:

  • you’ve tested positive for COVID-19 or been told you’re a close contact by NHS Test and Trace or the NHS COVID-19 app
  • you’re not exempt from self-isolating
  • you’ll lose income because you cannot work from home

You can be either employed or self-employed.

You or the partner you live with must get one of the following benefits:

  • Universal Credit
  • Working Tax Credit
  • income-related Employment and Support Allowance (ESA)
  • income-based Jobseeker’s Allowance (JSA)
  • Income Support
  • Housing Benefit
  • Pension Credit

You must have given NHS Test and Trace the information they’ve asked for, and have a NHS Test and Trace account ID.

If you’re the parent or guardian of a child who needs to self-isolate

You might be able to get the payment if they have tested positive for COVID-19 and you need to take time off to look after them. They must:

  • be 15 or under, or 25 or under if they have an Education, Health and Care plan (EHC)
  • live with you
  • normally be at school or in childcare
  • have been told to self-isolate by NHS Test and Trace

You’ll need to meet the other eligibility criteria. You’ll need evidence that your child has been told to self-isolate by NHS Test and Trace.

You might also be able to apply if your child has not tested positive for COVID-19 and all of the following are true:

  • your child is 25 or under and has an EHC plan
  • they have been told they’re a close contact by NHS Test and Trace
  • they are not exempt from self-isolating

If you’re usually working and do not get benefits

You can apply for the payment if you meet all of the following conditions:

  • you’ve tested positive for COVID-19 or been told you’re a close contact by NHS Test and Trace or the NHS COVID-19 app
  • you’re not exempt from self-isolating
  • you’ll lose income because you cannot work from home

You can be either employed or self-employed.

Your council website will tell you what counts as low income, and whether you’re eligible.

You must have given NHS Test and Trace the information they’ve asked for, and have a NHS Test and Trace account ID.

If you’re the parent or guardian of a child who needs to self-isolate

You might be able to get the payment if they have tested positive for COVID-19 and you need to take time off to look after them. They must:

  • be 15 or under, or 25 or under if they have an Education, Health and Care plan (EHC)
  • live with you
  • normally be at school or in childcare
  • have been told to self-isolate by NHS Test and Trace

You’ll need to meet the other eligibility criteria. You’ll need evidence that your child has been told to self-isolate by NHS Test and Trace.

You might also be able to apply if your child has not tested positive for COVID-19 and all of the following are true:

  • your child is 25 or under and has an EHC plan
  • they have been told they’re a close contact by NHS Test and Trace
  • they are not exempt from self-isolating

Apply through your council

Search for your local council to apply on their website. They’ll tell you what evidence you need to apply, but you might need:

  • a payslip if you’re employed, or evidence of your Self Assessment tax returns if you’re self-employed
  • a bank statement
  • your NHS Test and Trace account ID, or evidence your child has been told to self-isolate by NHS Test and Trace
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