Help with your money

Financial assistance and benefits

COVID-19 winter grant

Ealing families on low incomes and vulnerable households will get a helping hand this winter in the form of special vouchers and grants to help with food and other essentials. Eligible families will be written to either by email or post with details about how to redeem their vouchers. Read more about the COVID-19 winter grant.

Self-isolation payment

The Test and Trace support payment has been introduced to help people on low incomes self-isolate when they test positive or are identified as a contact, and to encourage more people to get tested. 

If you have been told by the NHS to self-isolate, either because you have tested positive for coronavirus (COVID-19) or you have been in contact with someone who has tested positive, you may be entitled to some financial support during your self-isolation period.

You can only make an application if you were told to self-isolate on or after 28 September 2020. You can make a claim up to 14 days after your period of self-isolation ended. Your claim will not be accepted if you make an application at a later date.

To be eligible for the Test and Trace Support payment, you must:

  • Have been asked to self-isolate by NHS Test and Trace either because you have tested positive for coronavirus (COVID-19) or have recently been in close contact with someone who has tested positive
  • Be employed or self-employed
  • Be unable to work from home and will lose income as a result
  • Be receiving Universal Credit, Working Tax Credit, income-based Employment and Support Allowance, income-based Jobseeker’s Allowance, Income Support, Housing Benefit and/or Pension Credit.

If you are not in receipt of any of the above benefits, you can still apply for a discretionary self-isolation payment as long as you meet the other eligibility criteria.

Apply for a self-isolation grant

Local welfare assistance

You can apply for Local welfare assistance if you are struggling to buy food. You can get food vouchers and money for essential household items.

Discretionary housing payments

Discretionary housing payments may be available to top-up housing-related benefits for a limited time to cover housing costs such as rent..

Exceptional Hardship support

The Exceptional Hardship fund provides a range of support for individuals experiencing great difficulty due to COVID-19. To apply for this funding visit the local welfare assistance page to apply online or contact tel: 020 8825 6237. 

Support for self-employed

The government has launched the Self-Employment Income Support Scheme which allows people who are self-employed to claim a taxable grant. This scheme is being extended to include two additional grants.

HMRC has launched an online tool you can use to find out if you’re eligible to make a claim through the SEISS. The following are required to access the tool: 

  • Self-Assessment Unique Taxpayer Reference (UTR) number
  • National Insurance number.

Help and advice on benefits

If you need advice on benefit entitlements you can telephone our benefits advice line.

Ealing Advice Service is a local service working to provide people in Ealing with access to high-quality advice. The service brings together key advice agencies in Ealing to help with basic information to advice, to full legal representation from a specialist solicitor or caseworker.

Information on claiming benefits is also available from the Department for Work and Pensions. A new website has been created to provide clear, factual information on employment and benefits support with advice on housing, furlough, sick pay and self-employment, alongside advice and FAQs for employers, those already claiming and those making a new claim.

Useful contact numbers

  • Apply for Universal Credit or call 0800 328 5644  
  • Citizens Advice can provide support on how to make a new Universal Credit claim. Call 0800 1448 444 
  • To claim pension credit 
  • Job Seekers Allowance /Employment Support Allowance /Income Support Benefits - 0800 169 0310 
  • Social Fund: 0800 169 0140 
  • Bereavement Benefits: 0800 731 0139 
  • Tax Credits: 0345 300 3900