Child Care Subsidy & Support

Guide to Child Care Subsidy and Rebate 2021/22

The application for child care benefits can seem a confusing process. For many parents, it can be tough to understand exactly how the process works, who is eligible, how much money they could save, and how to apply for it.

We know how complex the Child Care Subsidy can seem. That is why we have taken a closer at the entire process to help you, so you can understand how it can support you and your loved ones.

 

What is the Child Care Subsidy?

The Australian government is committed to ensuring that every family in the country can access high quality and affordable child care. While there are lots of different government programs and subsidies, the Child Care Subsidy is the primary method of support for families.

This unique government grant helps to provide financial assistance to parents, supporting you in covering the costs of your childcare requirements. The level of support that you’ll receive will depend on the eligibility and circumstances of your family.

 

How does it work?

Although the application for child care benefits might seem confusing, the process is actually quite straightforward. Once you have been confirmed eligible, the subsidy will be paid directly to your child care provider, who will then give you a reduction in fees.

This means that the government will pay for a certain amount of your child’s care fees, requiring you to pay the remaining amount. The level of funding the government will pay will depend on your income, your child’s age, and the hours of care they attend.

Still unsure? The below video from Services Australia helps to explain this further:

 

Who can apply?

Before you can submit an application for child care benefits, you will need to check if you are eligible. In order to receive the subsidy, you or your partner will need to:

  • Care for the child for at least two nights per fortnight, or have at least 14% care of the child.
  • Be liable for the fees from an approved child care service.
  • Meet the government’s residency rules.

In order to qualify for the subsidy, your child must also have met the immunisation requirements and not be attending secondary school.  However, there are exemptions to that final rule, such as the child having a disability or are under 13 and still need supervision. In either of these circumstances, you’ll need to provide evidence and be able to confirm that another adult is unable to care for them.

Alongside the standard Child Care Subsidy, certain families will also be able to apply for further support or Addition Child Care Subsidy (ACCS). This includes those who are a grandparent, are transitioning jobs or are experiencing temporary financial difficulties. To apply for additional financial support, go to Government Services Australia website for more information.

The application for child care benefits does require the child to be attending a facility approved by the Australian government. These include:

  • Centre Based Day Cares (both long-day and occasional care)
  • Family Day Care
  • Outside School Hours care

 

 

Activity test

The hours of subsidised care you can get per fortnight depends on the hours of recognised activities you do.

 

 

Family’s combined annual income

The Australian Government will subsidise a percentage of a family’s child care fees or the hourly rate cap, whichever is lower. The amount the government subsidises is based on a family’s combined annual income.

The following are the CCS family income thresholds before 10 December 2021:

 

 

 

2022 Update: Enhanced child care subsidy

  1. Removing the annual cap from 10 December 2021
  2. Increasing the subsidy by 30% (capped at 95%) for their second child and subsequent children aged under 5 in care from 7 March 2022. If you:
  • earn under $354,305 (2020–21), and
  • have more than one child aged under 5 in care.

 

How much money can you save?

The amount of money that you can save with the Child Care Subsidy will differ depending on your family circumstances. The amount that you will receive depends on your family income estimate and will apply to either your hourly rate cap or hourly fee, depending on which is lower. There is an annual cap for those families earning between $190,015 and $354,305, but if it is under that, then there is no cap.

To help you work out how much money you could be saving with your application for child care benefits, we have put together a unique Child Care Subsidy calculator.

 

 

Application for child care benefit – How to apply?

We know how complicated it can appear when trying to navigate the Child Care Subsidy application process. However, these five simple steps will help to guide you through the application process. Please note the Child Care Subsidy process can take up to 6 weeks to gain approval.

 

 

Step One – Sign in

The first thing that you will need to do is to log into your MyGov account and head to the Centrelink page.

 

 

Step Two – Select Claims

From there, you can navigate to the menu in the upper left corner and select ‘Payment and claims’ and then ‘Claims’ followed by ‘Make a Claim’.

 

 

Step Three – Get started

Once the ‘Make a Claim’ page has loaded, you will then need to navigate to the ‘Families section and click ‘Get Started’.

 

 

Step Four – Add your information

You should then follow the step-by-step process and answer every question. Each page is packed with info to ensure you know exactly what is required and how to submit your documents.

 

 

Step Five – Submit your claim

Once you have completed this information, you can then submit your claim.

If you are unsure of any stage of the application process or you need further assistance, then the government website has a range of services and tools to help you. This includes tips and assistance on child care fees, additional payments and having other individuals deal with them on your behalf. 

 

Start your journey today

If you are looking for support with your Child Care Subsidy or you are looking for professional and recognised child care, then Journey Early Learning is here to help you. Our mission is to help every child start the journey of life in the very best possible way, and our play-based learning process creates a fun and engaging learning environment.

Each of our facilities is managed by experienced and qualified Early Childhood Teachers ready to inspire your child each and every day. Sending your child to kindergarten can be a very daunting moment for parents, but our friendly team is here to support you every step of the way.

 

We are on hand to guide you through the entire process, from our Child Care Subsidy calculator to help you through your child’s first day.

 

Want to find out more? Find your local Journey Early Learning centre here, check out our Parents FAQ or get in touch with our team today.

Latest Articles