The Government have announced that from 28 September 2020, there will be a new legal duty on all those that test positive for COVID-19 or are identified by NHS Test and Trace as a close contact, to self-isolate. Failure to comply will be an offence carrying a fine of at least £1,000 and up to £10,000 for multiple breaches.
To support people on low incomes who must self-isolate, cannot work from home and will lose income as a result, the Government has introduced a Test and Trace Support Payment Scheme. This is important to help stop the transmission of COVID-19 and avoid further economic and societal restrictions. The scheme will last until 31 March 2021.
Individuals who qualify and meet the criteria will be entitled to a £500 lump sum payable into their bank account. These payments will be subject to income tax but not national insurance contributions. The council will be required to inform HMRC of payments made.
In addition to the main scheme, the Government has also provided guidance and limited funding for a Test and Trace Support Payment Discretionary Scheme.
Primary eligibility criteria for the Discretionary Scheme has been set by Government, with the option for councils to introduce additional criteria to determine eligibility if these operate in addition to, rather than the criteria set out below:
Individuals will not be eligible for the scheme if they:
Government funding for the Discretionary Scheme is a fixed amount so, once the funding is spent, the council will no longer be able to make awards under the Discretionary Scheme. The council will, therefore, monitor applications and may make changes to local eligibility criteria to ensure the payments are available for those most in need.
People who live in Coventry who have received notification from NHS Test and Trace to self-isolate will be entitled to a self-isolation payment providing they:
Submit an application within 28 days of the start of their isolation period. Proof of the isolation number alone is not sufficient for a support payment
Applications will be made online or by telephoning the council on 08085 834333, whereby an officer will assist with the online application.
All applications will require evidence which will be subject to verification before a payment is made. The council has a duty to protect the public purse and prevent and detect fraud.
There is no right of appeal against any decision not to award a payment, either for the main Test and Trace Support Payment or for applications to receive a Discretionary payment. People who are turned down will not be eligible because they do not meet the criteria.
However, where possible, we will work with you to make sure that you have an opportunity to provide the necessary evidence to support a successful application
If you are not eligible for a payment, but need help, find out about our additional help available.