COVID-19 - Severe financial hardship

News update 20 March: Government announces it will pay up to 80% of worker's wages

Employers should contact you if this applies. For more information 

If you work for an ABTA Member and have been affected by the coronavirus we may be able to help you. However, you will need to show that you are suffering severe financial hardship as a result and demonstrate you have sought help from appropriate agencies first. This includes:

1. Check your/family benefit entitlement - if your income has reduced please seek advice on what benefits you may be entitled to. You can go to your local Citizens Advice or call their 'help to claim' benefits telephone service on 0800 1448 444. You can also visit their website that gives further details on benefits and budgeting 

2. If you/family have debts, seek advice from your local Citizens Advice Centre, contact a debt agency such as StepChange or we can refer you to our partner Citizens Advice Manchester. CAM can provide you with expert advice on debt, benefits, housing and budgeting at no cost to you. With your consent we can refer you to CAM who will work with you (over the telephone) to see what the options are to manage your situation including help with your creditors and in some cases take on benefit appeals. CAM will send a 'care' letter with possible options on how to manage your situation. In order to consider helping you further we will require you to share with us the advice that has been given so that we can determine with CAM the best way we might support you. 

3. Speak to your bank and other creditors to see if they can give you a holiday from your payments. 

4. Go through your budget. Are there any items that you can suspend or stop whilst you are struggling? Again please refer to the free budgeting tools  available.

5. Are there any family members that can help you?

Also, do take a look at some of the further advice available on mortgages, credit cards and renting your property etc.

(Please note, we provide these links as possible support tools and have no responsibility for the accuracy of the information)

If you can demonstrate you have explored the above steps and still believe you are in severe financial hardship please complete our 

Online Application Form. 

If you have any issues completing the form or questions about the following please get in touch with us via email

Before completing the form, please ensure you have the following documents ready to attach as you will not be able to save your progress. 

Supporting documents required in order for your application to be processed:

  • Evidence/confirmation of the above 5 steps taken prior to seeking help
  • Documentation to confirm you work or worked for an ABTA Member
  • Bank or building society statement - most recent full monthly statement for you and your household (blank out account details)
  • Payslip, pension advice or redundancy letter (include payout figure) - most recent 
  • Confirmation of reduced hours, zero contract, redundancy
  • Confirmation of the benefits you receive (e.g. official letters, bank statements, GOV.UK)
  • Confirmation of your liabilities and debts (e.g. a CAB financial statement summary
  • If you are in arrears, copies of outstanding priority bills or statements such as energy/ council tax/ water
  • Two quotes for goods, services or equipment needed

We appreciate this is a long list, but the more information you can provide us, the quicker we can review your case. 

Please check your SPAM folder before contacting us if you have not heard anything. Our form has been created on Jotform so please look out for the emails from and

We require you to fill out the form electronically and email it back with supporting evidence/documents of reduced hours, redundancy, financial statements, debts, bank statements and proof of the steps taken above.

We are currently NOT accepting applications by post as we cannot guarantee it will reach us or will be opened at this time.  

We suggest you to blank out any confidential details such as bank account numbers etc. Please be aware you email/send at your own risk.

Once we have reviewed your application we will come back to you with any further questions after which your case will be considered. 

We will do our very best to assess your application as soon as we can, but please be mindful that these are very challenging times with many many people seeking help.

The application form itself is not a guarantee of help. Each application will be treated on a case-by-case basis and will be individually assessed. 

If you have any questions please do not hesitate to contact us at or call 0203 693 0171.

How to look after your health during the coronavirus outbreak

Take a look at the advice given by the Mental Health Foundation 

Keeping COVID-19 under control 

We are still not fully aware of how the coronavirus is spread. Based on similar illness it has been deduced that COVID-19 can be spread through cough droplets. *There are easy measures that can be taken in order to avoid catching or spreading the virus further:


  • wash your hands with soap and water often – do this for at least 20 seconds
  • always wash your hands when you get home or into work
  • use hand sanitiser gel if soap and water are not available
  • cover your mouth and nose with a tissue or your sleeve (not your hands) when you cough or sneeze
  • put used tissues in the bin straight away and wash your hands afterwards
  • try to avoid close contact with people who are unwell


  • Do not touch your eyes, nose or mouth if your hands are not clean.

*Source content -

Symptoms and NHS Advice

It is useful to note the symptoms of the Corona Virus; a cough, high temperature and/ or shortness of breath. These symptoms alone do not necessarily indicate you have the Corona Virus however you may consider calling 111 to seek advice. If you suspect you may have caught the virus, please stay at home and avoid close contact with other people. Do not go to a GP surgery, pharmacy or hospital (you will run the risk of spreading the virus further to other potentially more vulnerable people). The 111 coronavirus service will tell you if you need to continue to stay at home (self-isolate) or if you need medical help. Communicate with your employer your plans and potential absence. Some workplaces will arrange work-from-home facilities however this is completely dependent on the job role.

For more information on how the NHS is dealing with the Corona Virus and what actions they suggest you take please see their dedicated COVID-19 Webpage.