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Test and Trace Self-Isolation Support Payment

From 28 September 2020 it was made illegal for any UK resident to leave their home if:

  • They had tested positive for COVID-19; or
  • They had been contacted by the NHS Test and Trace Service and told to self-isolate

For some people this may mean they are unable to go to work and will lose pay.  For people who find themselves in this situation, the Government has introduced a support payment scheme to help out whilst self-isolating.

What is a Self-Isolation Payment?

A Self Isolation Payment is a £500 lump sum intended to support those who have:

  • Tested positive for coronavirus and been told by the NHS Track and Trace service to self-isolate; or
  • Been identified as a close contact of someone who has tested positive for coronavirus and been told to self-isolate by the NHS Track and Trace service .

You will need to meet certain criteria to be eligible for the payment and you must self-isolate (for up to 14 days) as advised by the NHS Test and Trace service.

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Who can claim?

To make a claim you must:

  • Live in Newcastle under Lyme
  • Have been told to self-isolate by the NHS Test and Trace service on or after 28 September
  • Make your claim within 14 days of the last day of your self-isolation
  • Be employed or self-employed
  • Be unable to work from home
  • Be losing income as a result of your isolation
  • Receive one (or more) of the following benefits:
    • Universal Credit
    • Working Tax Credit
    • Income-based Employment and Support Allowance
    • Income-based Jobseeker’s Allowance,
    • Income Support,
    • Housing Benefit
    • Pension Credit

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What if I don't receive benefits?

If you are not receiving one of the listed benefits, the Council will be operating a discretionary scheme.  You will still need to be on a low income and otherwise meet the criteria listed above.

Test and Trace Discretionary Payment Scheme

You can apply using the link below and we will process your application as soon as possible.

Please note, the criteria of the discretionary scheme may change at any time, without prior notice. 

Additional information will be required if you are making a claim and are part of a debt solution.

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Who cannot claim?

You cannot claim if you:

  • Have not been contacted by NHS Test and Trace and told to self-isolate
  • Are quarantining after travelling abroad (unless you test positive during the 14-day quarantine period)
  • Continue to receive full wages while you self-isolate
  • You are currently furloughed
  • Can work from home during the period of self-isolation
  • Your self-isolation period started before the scheme launched on Monday 28 September

Anyone who has been told to self-isolate by the NHS Test and Trace service will be given a unique reference number.  You will not be able to make a claim without this reference.

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How will payments be made?

Payments will only be made via BACS transfer into your bank account. 

We cannot make payments to third parties or to non-UK bank accounts.

The support payment is subject to Income Tax but not National Insurance. You will not be taxed at the point of payment, however you will be contacted by Her Majesty's Revenue and Customs (HMRC) at a later date regarding any Income Tax due.

If you receive benefits, the payments will not be considered for the following schemes:

  • Means tested benefits such as Universal Credit or Housing Benefit
  • Discretionary Housing Payments
  • Our Council Tax Support schemes

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What do I need to apply?

To make an application you will need the following information:

  • Your unique NHS Test and Trace ID number
  • Your National Insurance number
  • Details of benefits you receive (including any reference numbers)
  • Details of your employment including your employer’s name, address and contact number

If you are employed, you will need copies of the following information for submission with your application:

  • Your latest bank statement which must:
    • Show your name and address
    • Show your account details (which must match those submitted on your application form)
    • Show proof of income (i.e. wages being paid in)
    • Be dated within the last two months

Do not send in photographs of your debit card as these will not be accepted.

  • A wage slip, dated within the last two months, showing your income, which can be matched to your bank statement
  • Proof from your employer (such as a letter or email) that you cannot work from home and will not be paid whilst self-isolating

If you are self-employed you will need copies of the following information for submission with your application:

  • Your latest business bank statement which must:
    • Show your name and address
    • Show your account details (which must match those submitted on your application form)
    • Show proof of income 
    • Be dated within the last two months

Do not send in photographs of your business debit card as these will not be accepted.

  • Your most recent set of accounts or evidence of self-assessment returns
  • Proof that your business delivers services which cannot be undertaken without social contact

If you cannot supply all of the required information, your claim may be delayed or declined.

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How do I apply?

Once you have all of the information required, you can complete our online application form:

Click Here To Apply

Applications will be back-dated to the start of the scheme (Monday, September 28th) where appropriate.

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Can I apply more than once?

You can only claim a self-isolation support payment more than once if you have been asked to self-isolate by the NHS Test and Trace service for a different period.

You will be eligible providing you meet the eligibility criteria for each individual claim and your periods of self-isolation do not overlap.

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Can more than one person in my household apply?

Applications are made on an individual basis.  

Any further applications from within the same household must be made by each affected individual and will be subject to the same assessment criteria.

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How long will this take?

We aim to process claims within ten working days.  However, this is dependent on the information you submit to us being complete and suitable.  If any information is missing or requires further clarification, your claim may take longer.

Payments into your bank account will usually be made on the day that we approve your claim and we will let you know when this happens.

We will keep you informed about your claims progress by email or text message and we may contact you if more information is required.

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If my application is declined, can I appeal?

There is no right of appeal against a decision not to award a payment.  

If you do not receive the Test and Trace payment, it will be because you do not meet the criteria.

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How are you protecting against fraud?

Claimants will be prosecuted if they have manipulated or falsified their position in order to obtain support payments.  This includes failure to self-isolate, which puts others at risk.  Any payment made as a result of proven fraud will be subject to recovery action.

Newcastle under Lyme Borough Council is working with other Government departments to ensure that necessary checks are undertaken and that payments are verified to have been made correctly.

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Will my data be shared?

The information you submit will be processed by Newcastle under Lyme Borough Council. 

We will need your consent to access your records in the NHS Test and Trace system, to confirm that you are eligible for the Test and Trace Support payment.  

You can find more information on this via the NHS Test and Trace Privacy Notice:

https://contact-tracing.phe.gov.uk/help/privacy-notice 

We will carry out checks with or provide information to:

  • The Department for Work and Pensions (DWP)
  • Her Majesty’s Revenue and Customs (HMRC)
  • With your employer (where appropriate).  

Unless listed above, we will not share your data with other organisations or individuals outside of the Council, unless we are required to by law.

We will provide information to HMRC because Test and Trace Support Payments are subject to Tax. If you are self-employed, you will need to declare the payment on your self-assessment tax return.

If you wish to request any changes to the way your data is used for the purposes of processing your application, including the withdrawal of consent, you can exercise your rights under GDPR by writing to the Council’s Data Protection Officer or by emailing dataprotection@newcastle-staffs.gov.uk.

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