Coronavirus

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Coronavirus

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Test and trace self-isolation payment

If you or someone in your household, support bubble or childcare bubble has tested positive for coronavirus and you are asked to self-isolate, you may be eligible for a self-isolation payment of £500. 

There are 3 schemes through which you could be eligible for a self-isolation payment:

  • the main government-funded scheme
  • Harlow Council's discretionary scheme
  • Essex County Council-funded discretionary scheme

Eligibility 

Government scheme

To be eligible to receive the self-isolation payment through the main scheme, you must:

  • have received, and be complying with a notification from the NHS test and trace service to self-isolate, or are the parent of a child who has been instructed to self-isolate and
  • be employed or self-employed, and not furloughed
  • be unable to work from home and will lose income as a result
  • be in receipt of one of the following benefits:
    • Universal Credit
    • Working Tax Credit
    • Income-related Employment and Support Allowance
    • Housing Benefit
    • Income Support
    • Income-based Job Seekers Allowance
    • Pension Credit

For full details of our standard scheme, read our self-isolation payment scheme policy (pdf)

Warning text

If you are not receiving one of the qualifying benefits, you may still be eligible for help through our discretionary schemes.

Harlow Council discretionary scheme

You could be eligible for our discretionary scheme if you:

  • have received, and be complying with a notification from the NHS test and trace service to self-isolate, or are the parent of a child who has been instructed to self-isolate
  • be employed or self-employed, and not furloughed
  • be unable to work from home and will lose income as a result
  • have savings or capital of less than £1,000

For full details of this scheme, read our self-isolation payment discretionary scheme policy (pdf)

Essex County Council-funded discretionary scheme

You could be eligible for the discretionary scheme funded by Essex County Council if you:

  • have received, and be complying with a notification from the NHS test and trace service to self-isolate, or are the parent of a child who has been instructed to self-isolate
  • be employed or self-employed, and not furloughed
  • be unable to work from home and will lose income as a result
  • earn less than £500 per week net and
  • have household savings (capital) of less than £16,000

You will not be eligible for any of the schemes if:

  • you are quarantining after travelling abroad
  • continue to receive full wages while you self-isolate
  • can work from home during a period of self-isolation
  • have not received a notification from the NHS test and trace service requiring you to self-isolate
  • are furloughed by your employer

Apply

You can apply for a self-isolation payment online. You can apply up to 42 days after the first day of self-isolation. When you make your application to us we will assess it to see whether you are eligible for support under either the main or the discretionary schemes.

To receive the payment you will need to provide:

  • a copy of your latest bank statement (issued within the last 2 months and clearly showing proof of your earnings)
  • proof of your self-employment (2 months bank statements for your business account, most recent set of self-employed accounts or self-assessment tax returns)
  • your notification from NHS Test and Trace asking you to self-isolate
  • your national insurance number

We will review your application to make sure you meet the eligibility conditions and have provided all the evidence we need.

If you are eligible for the standard payment then this will be paid into the account that your wages are normally paid into within 3 working days.

If you are not eligible for the standard payment and are applying for the discretionary scheme then we will contact you to advise you of any additional information you need to provide.

Appeals

If we decide that you are not entitled to a self-isolation payment there is no formal right of appeal. However, you can request that the decision is reviewed by a senior officer.

You need make your request within 3 days of the council’s decision by email to hdc.benefits@harlow.gov.uk quoting your application reference number.