The government has announced that a support payment is available for those suffering financial hardship as a result of self-isolation due to a positive coronavirus test or being in close contact with someone who has tested positive. A payment may also be available for parents or guardians who are not legally required to self-isolate, but need to take time off work to care for a child or young person who has been told to self-isolate.

From 28 September 2020, you will be entitled to a Test and Trace Support Payment of £500 if you:

  • 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

  • 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) in which you have provided your contact details and, where you have tested positive, the details of your contacts

  • 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 whilst they self-isolate. The child must be 15 or under (or 25 or under with an Education, Health and Care Plan), and normally attend an education or childcare setting. The child or young person must have been told to self-isolate on or after 8th March 2021 by either NHS Test and Trace or by their education or childcare setting as they have been in close contact with someone who has tested positive. This is limited to one parent or guardian per household.

  • are employed or self-employed

  • are unable to work from home and will lose income as a result

  • are currently receiving at least one of the following:

    • Universal Credit

    • Working Tax Credit

    • Income-based Employment and Support Allowance

    • Income-based Jobseeker’s Allowance

    • Income Support

    • Housing Benefit 

    • Pension Credit

You may be eligible for a discretionary payment if you meet all the above criteria (except for receiving one of the qualifying benefits listed), but instead you:

  • are in receipt of Council Tax Support or

  • have less than £1,500 in personal savings.

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. Self-employed recipients should report the payment on their 20/21 Self-Assessment tax return.

How do I apply for a Test and Trace Support Payment?

You can apply for a £500 Test and Trace Support Payment by filling out the application form below:

Apply for a Test and Trace Support Payment

Before you apply please familiarise yourself with the criteria for applicants to ensure that you are eligible and double-check that you have everything that you need to apply - you can find this listed below.

We have compiled some FAQs [PDF, 0.3MB] to help you through the process of applying.

What information will you need from me?

You will need the following information to complete the application form:

  • your 8-digit Test and Trace ID number 

  • National Insurance number 

  • proof of receipt of one of the qualifying benefits

  • most recent 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

  • if applying as the parent or guardian of a child or young person, the child or young person’s Test and Trace ID number, or a letter or email from the education or childcare setting.

Please be prepared and gather the required information before starting the application form.

Please do not lose your Test and Trace self-isolation proof notification.

The scheme will run until Thursday 30 September 2021.