ALL hands are on deck to get benefits to those affected by coronavirus, the Government has said.

The Department for Work and Pensions has lifted restrictions on benefits in a bid to bolster people’s finances.

Brighton Jobcentre customer service manager Piers Harrison said his main priority was getting payments sorted.

“It’s all we want to do,” he said.


“We’ve still got people in the office sorting payments over the phone.

“We’re doing everything we can to make sure people get their money.”

Anyone affected by coronavirus can apply for Universal Credit and receive a month’s advance without visiting a Jobcentre.

And the seven-day waiting period for Employment and Support Allowance has been removed for people affected by the pandemic.

Meanwhile those already claiming benefits will not be required to produce a sick note if they have been told to self-isolate.

Neither will they have to attend benefit assessments, including for Personal Independence Payment.

People who cannot work due to coronavirus, including if they must self-isolate, will be paid Statutory Sick Pay from day one.

Self-employed Universal Credit claimants will receive increased payments if they are told to self-isolate.

The Government has also promised to provide online sick notes from NHS 111 “soon”.

Businesses losing employees to self-isolation will also be able to reclaim Statutory Sick Pay if they have fewer than 250 employees.

A Government spokesman said: “If you believe that you may have been infected, or have been in close contact with someone who has, please do not delay making a claim to Universal Credit.

“You should stay at home and apply at the earliest opportunity.

“We understand people who are required to stay at home or are infected by coronavirus may need financial support, and quickly.”