Universal Credit claimants may be able to receive a one-off £500 payment if they are forced to self-isolate under new rules. The government confirmed people who are in work on low incomes will be able to claim a £500 lump sum payment if they cannot work from home and are required to self-isolate.
“People who choose to ignore the rules will face significant fines.
“We need to do all we can to control the spread of this virus, to prevent the most vulnerable people from becoming infected, and to protect the NHS and save lives.
“And while most people are doing their absolute level best to comply with the rules, I don’t want to see a situation where people don’t feel they are financially able to self-isolate.
“That’s why we’re also introducing a new £500 Test and Trace Support payment for those on low incomes who are required by NHS Test and Trace to remain at home to help stop the spread of the virus.”
While the £500 should help people with limited financial resources, it should be noted that the potential fines involved for not following the rules can be much higher.
If the self-isolation rules are not followed, fines can be levied which will start at £1,000.
They can then increase to £10,000 and repeat offenders may be prosecuted.
There are around four million people who receive the qualifying benefits in England who may be eligible for the payment.
To keep on top of these plans, NHS test and trace call handlers will make regular contact with those who have been told to self-isolate.
These handlers will be able to inform local authorities if they suspect that people aren’t following the new rules.
Police will also be checking on people who are in the worst hit areas and high-profile issues of non-compliance will be investigated and prosecuted.
Additionally, where other third parties have identified non-compliance, they’ll be able to report the problem and it will then be acted upon.