If you are self-isolating, been diagnosed with COVID-19 (CORONAVIRUS) or have been advised to stay at home because you are over 70, vulnerable or pregnant, read the advice below to see what you need to do about your benefit claim.
I am already claiming benefits
- If you are claiming Universal Credit (UC) but can’t go to an appointment at your local Jobcentre you should tell your work coach as soon as possible to avoid being given a sanction. You can do this through your online journal or by phone.
- If you have an appointment at your local Benefits office and/or or medical assessment centre let them know straight away by giving them a call. They should make alternative arrangements such as an assessment or appointment over the telephone.
- If you are currently claiming a sickness benefit such as Personal Independence Payment (PIP), Employment and Support Allowance (ESA) and some Universal Credit claims and you are waiting for a re-assessment you should contact your benefits office straight away. Face-to-face assessments have been cancelled until at least the 17 June 2020. It is likely that the assessment will be rearranged to a date after this. Your payments should continue until the rearranged assessment.
If you are in work and not claiming benefits
- If you cannot work because of Coronavirus or you are staying at home on government advice, you need to check with your employer if you can receive Statutory Sick Pay.
- If you work on a short term contract or a zero hours contract, you may be entitled to sick pay.
- If you are not eligible to receive sick pay, or you are self-employed, and unable to work because of the Coronavirus, you might be able to apply for Universal Credit.
How to make a new claim to Universal Credit and/or new style Employment & Support Allowance (ESA)
Most claims for Universal Credit are made online. Click here for more details about how to apply.
You can apply for ESA online or by telephone. Click here for more details about how to apply. You should get help from day one of any claim.
Don’t delay in making your claim. If you are self-isolating or unwell and cannot go to an appointment call the number you are given when you submit your claim, and explain the situation.
If you have Coronavirus you should be treated as having limited capability for work from the start of your claim. You should not need to provide a fit note.
For more advice on what benefits you might be able to claim during the Coronavirus pandemic, including if you are still working but facing a drop in income, go to the entitledto website.
The situation and advice regarding Coronavirus is changing at a fast pace. Please check back here regularly for any changes and click here for further information.