Coronavirus Financial Support FAQ

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Coronavirus

  1. Can I claim Employment Support Allowance?

    If you are under state pension age and have a disability or health condition that affects how much you can work you can also apply for Employment and Support Allowance (ESA). This could be instead of or as well as Universal Credit.

    You can apply for ‘new style’ ESA if you’re unable to claim Statutory Sick Pay and one of the following applies:

    • You or your child might have coronavirus or you’re recovering from it;
    • You or your child are self-isolating because you came into contact with someone who might have coronavirus;
    • You have been told to stay at home for at least 12 weeks by the NHS because you’re at high risk of severe illness.

    For more information see https://www.gov.uk/employment-support-allowance/eligibility.

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  2. Can I claim Jobseeker’s Allowance?

    You may be able to claim New Style Jobseeker’s Allowance (JSA) with, or instead of, Universal Credit, depending on your National Insurance record.

    You can apply for JSA if you are unemployed or work less than 16 hours a week.

    For more information on eligibility for JSA and to apply visit https://www.gov.uk/guidance/new-style-jobseekers-allowance.

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  3. I am already claiming benefits, how will coronavirus affect this?

    If you get Universal Credit this will continue as normal.

    If you’re working while claiming Universal Credit, your payment will be adjusted if you can no longer work due to coronavirus. You can update the hours you’re working in the usual way through your online account.

    You do not need to attend any Jobcentre Plus appointments or medical assessments during the coronavirus outbreak. You should not attend a Jobcentre Plus unless asked to do so for an exceptional purpose.

    Your payments will not be affected if you get:

    • Jobseeker’s Allowance
    • ‘New style’ Jobseeker’s Allowance
    • Employment and Support Allowance
    • ‘New style’ Employment and Support Allowance
    • Disability Living Allowance
    • Personal Independence Payment

    For more information see https://www.gov.uk/guidance/coronavirus-covid-19-what-to-do-if-youre-already-getting-benefits

     

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  4. I am self-employed and unable to work due to coronavirus. Is there support available?

    You may be able to claim a grant through the government’s Self-employment Income Support Scheme. For more information see https://www.gov.uk/guidance/claim-a-grant-through-the-coronavirus-covid-19-self-employment-income-support-scheme.

    If you are eligible you can also make a claim for Universal Credit while you wait for the grant.

    Small and medium-sized businesses affected by coronavirus can also access finance of up to £5million from the Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme.

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  5. I have lost my job due to coronavirus. What support is available to me?

    You can apply online for Universal Credit to get financial support if you have lost your job. The service is currently receiving a high number of applications, so it may take longer than usual for yours to be processed.

    When applying, please select that you do have housing costs. You should separate out the basic rent from the service charges which is broken down in your tenancy agreement. Don’t forget, you have four rent-free weeks per year.

    If you need any more information or help with your claim visit https://www.understandinguniversalcredit.gov.uk/.

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  6. Is there help available if I am unable to leave my home to get essentials like food and medicine?

    Please contact us if you need extra support and we will do all we can to help. We may be able to refer you to a local volunteer service that can help with deliveries to your home.

    You can also contact the Essex Welfare Service if you need additional support at this time. Visit www.essexwelfareservice.org or phone 0300 303 9988.

    The Trussell Trust provides details of food banks across Essex. To find your nearest enter your postcode on their website - https://www.trusselltrust.org/get-help/find-a-foodbank/

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  7. I’m a shared owner/leaseholder - is there any help available to me?

    Please contact us if you think you are going to struggle to pay your bills, and we will do what we can to help.

    Banks should be able to offer ‘payment holidays’ to mortgage customers who are struggling with payments at this time, but please be aware that this will simply delay payments rather than stopping them altogether.

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  8. I’m struggling with my rent due to coronavirus. Can you help?

    If you have any concerns about paying your rent please call us on 0300 555 0500. We will do whatever we can to help.

    We will not evict anyone as a result of coronavirus and will be happy to agree a special arrangement to support anyone struggling to pay at this difficult time.

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  9. What does being on furlough mean and am I eligible for this?

    If you and your employer both agree, your employer might be able to keep you on the payroll if they’re unable to operate or have no work for you to do because of coronavirus. This is known as being ‘on furlough’.

    Your employer could pay 80 per cent of your regular wages through the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme, up to a monthly cap of £2,500.

    You’ll still be paid by your employer and pay taxes from your income. You cannot undertake work for your employer while on furlough.

    For more information see https://www.gov.uk/guidance/check-if-you-could-be-covered-by-the-coronavirus-job-retention-scheme.

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  10. What if I am already claiming extra support?

    If you‘re already getting help from your local authority by receiving Housing Benefit (help to pay your rent) or Council Tax Reduction (help towards your Council Tax), let them know about the change to your income. If you don’t know which council you come under you can find out here https://www.gov.uk/find-local-council.

    If you don’t currently get a discount on your council tax, then contact your local authority via their website to see how you can apply for Council Tax Reduction.

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  11. Will I get sick pay if I am employed but not able to work due to coronavirus?

    You can claim Statutory Sick Pay (SSP) for every day you are self-isolating if you started on or after 13 March. You must self-isolate for at least 4 days to be eligible for SSP.

    SSP is paid by your employer in the same way as your normal wages. You should still inform your employer if you are unable to work due to coronavirus.

    For further information see https://www.gov.uk/statutory-sick-pay/what-youll-get

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Total results: 11