This page brings together the financial advice available for people living in Doncaster, it will be updated as more information becomes available.
Check if something is a scam
Make sure you only use trusted sources of information about coronavirus. If you see emails about coronavirus from someone you don't know, don't click on any links or buy anything. Don’t give money or personal details to anyone you don’t know or trust – for example, if someone knocks on your door and offers to help.
You can check if something is a scam using Citizens Advice's online tool.
I have lost income due to being asked to self isolate - Self-isolation support payments
If you have been told to stay at home and self-isolate by NHS Test and Trace, either because you have tested positive for coronavirus or have recently been in close contact with someone who has tested positive; are unable to work and will lose income as a result, you may be eligible to apply for a self-isolation support payment.
On 20 September 2020, the Government announced a new national Test and Trace Support Scheme. Under the scheme payments of £500 will be available for residents who have received notification from NHS test and trace to self-isolate, providing that period of self-isolation started on or after 28 September 2020.
The payment is to support those on low incomes, who would also lose income as a result of self-isolating, and to encourage people to get tested if they have symptoms. This is important to help stop the transmission of COVID 19. The scheme will operate until 31 March 2021.
For more details of the scheme, eligibility criteria, and to apply, go to our application page.
I live in council accommodation and I’m struggling to pay the rent – what should I do?
St Leger Homes currently recommend that people speak to their local rents officer in their area office if struggling with rent payments – and then they can refer on to our Tenancy Sustainability Team as necessary for further support.
Find out more on the St Leger Homes website.
I'm struggling with my energy supply/bills/pre-payment meter. What can I do?
There are a number of places offering support for anyone struggling with paying for energy:
- If you would like wider energy support and advice to get back on track consider the Inclusive Energy Advice Project
- For everything else consider the other sources of help and advice listed
1. Inclusive Energy Advice Project
By completing a referral form you will get help from an Energy Awareness Support Worker. The aim is to help you to manage their energy bills; provide guidance on tariffs and the use of energy comparison websites; understand how to switch providers; supply each household with 8 LED Energy Saving Bulbs; and apply for Priority Services Registration.
You will be helped to understand the various schemes available such as Warm Homes Discount Schemes, Cold Weather payments and Winter Fuel.
Anyone with a disability or long term health condition can access the scheme, you do not need to be registered disabled, can be self-diagnosed and the long term health condition may be physical or hidden.
2. Other Sources of help and advice
OFGEM is providing information about energy supply to the public including information for people on prepaid meters. Customers are also advised to contact their energy company directly.
The government has released a press release which may be useful to anyone supporting people who are going to struggle to pay their energy bills.
For energy-saving tips and advice from our local Energy Team go to: Energy Saving Tips
Can I be furloughed if I'm no longer able to go to work?
What help is available for businesses?/How do I apply for a business grant?
Where can I go to get more financial help and advice?
Green Homes Grant- The government will provide a voucher up to £5,000 that covers up to two-thirds of the cost of energy efficiency and low carbon heat improvements to your home. See which improvements are included in the scheme below. You may be able to receive a bigger grant if you are a homeowner and you or a member of your household receives one of the qualifying benefits. The Government will cover 100% of the cost of the improvements up to £10,000.
How do I apply for a Green Homes Grant?
- Check if you’re eligible for a voucher
- Check what improvements may be suitable for your home
- Choose which improvements you would like and see an estimate of how much they may cost
- Find registered installers to get quotes to carry out the work
- Apply for your voucher
The Green Homes Grant scheme will never include official representatives coming to your property uninvited or cold calling on the phone to encourage you to join the scheme.
Employment and Support Allowance- You can apply for Employment and Support Allowance (ESA) if you’re under State Pension age and you have a disability or health condition that affects how much you can work. You can also claim ESA if you cannot claim Statutory Sick Pay and you or your child are: self-isolating, have covid-19 or have been told to shield.
Warm Home Discount Scheme- You could get £140 off your electricity bill for winter 2020 to 2021 under the Warm Home Discount Scheme. The money is not paid to you - it’s a one-off discount on your electricity bill, between September and March. You may be able to get the discount on your gas bill instead if your supplier provides you with both gas and electricity.
Cold Weather Payment- You may get a Cold Weather Payment if you’re getting certain benefits or Support for Mortgage Interest. You’ll get a payment if the average temperature in your area is recorded as, or forecast to be, zero degrees Celsius or below over 7 consecutive days. You’ll get £25 for each 7 day period of very cold weather between 1 November and 31 March.
Winter Fuel Payment- If you were born on or before 5 October 1954 you could get between £100 and £300 to help you pay your heating bills. This is known as a ‘Winter Fuel Payment’.
Local Assistance Scheme- Our Local Assistance Scheme is designed to help the most vulnerable residents in meeting an immediate short-term need or maintaining their independence in the community. Help can be given with daily living expenses and/or furniture items and white goods.
For more support and advice you can visit the Citizens Advice website or the Money Advice Service website which both provide reliable and up to date information. For employment and financial support from the Government go to the relevant tab on the Government's coronavirus information pages.
Who can I talk to locally for help and support
Citizens Advice Doncaster are providing online debt advice by video. This can be accessed anywhere. The waiting room is open 10am to 1:30pm weekdays.
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