The Child Care Subsidy is a government program that assists families with child care costs (CCS). The goal of CCS is to make early childhood education accessible. To receive CCS on behalf of families, a qualified child care service must be approved by the government under Family Assistance Law of the Australian government. When child care providers pass on CCS to families as a charge decrease, they are compensated.
How does it work?
Childcare providers must be authorized under Family Assistance Law in order to receive CCS on behalf of families. CCS is received by providers and passed on to families as a fee reduction.
When families pay their out-of-pocket expenditures for childcare, they make a co-contribution to child care fees. The difference between the provider’s charge and the subsidy amount is known as the out-of-pocket expense. Fees imposed to families are subject to strict guidelines.
Families may receive Child Care Subsidy (CCS) if their children are unable to attend child care for up to 42 days per year. In some instances, such as COVID-19, families are also eligible for additional child care payments.
Services Australia balances CCS payments at the end of each fiscal year to verify that the government is paying the correct amount to households. Services Australia requires the following information so they can balance CCS. The information are
(1) attendance information from your child care service.
(2) income verification
(3) income of your partner
(4) income of your ex-partner.
How your money affects your CSS
The CCS percentage you are eligible to is affected by your family’s income. It will be calculated based on your estimated household income. The percentage represents the amount of money that the government will subsidize. It will be applied to your hourly charge or the applicable hourly rate cap, whichever is lower.
If your family’s income ranges from $0 to $70,015, your child care subsidy will be at 85%. For every $3,000 earned by the household, the proportion decreases by 1%. Families earning $175,015 to less than $254,305 will get a 50% CCS rate.
Families earning between $254,305 and $344,305 have a CCS rate between 50% and 20%. For every $3,000 in total family income, the proportion decreases by 1%. If a family’s income is between $344,305 and $354,305, they will get 20% CCS. Finally, if the family income is expected to be $354,305 or above, their proportion is 0%.
Other significant considerations
Your subsidised care for CCS is determined by your activity level. The activity level is based on the hours of recognised activities. This is used to calculate how many hours of subsidised child care the government will pay for each fortnight.
The hours of subsidised child care that may be received every fortnight apply to each kid. There are four activity levels.
More than 8 to 16 hours receive 36 hours of subsidised care each week. Those with more than 48 hours of activity level earn 100 hours of subsidy. If you have more than 16 to 48 hours you’re provided 72 hours of subsidised care for each fortnight. If your activity level is less than 8 hours, your hours of subsidised care are 0 hours if you earn over $70,015 and 24 hours if you earn $70,015 or lower.
These services have Australian Government clearance to lower CCS prices. Approved babysitters include:
- Long-term and occasional centre-based day care
- Outside School Hours Care, including before, after and vacation care
- In-home care
Meanwhile, the qualifying requirements for In-Home Care vary. All qualifying requirements for Child Care Subsidy, as well as additional conditions, must be met. The website of the Department of Education, Skills, and Employment will be extremely useful in learning more about this.
Number of children
The number of children in a household is a crucial factor in determining how much CCS they get. Families that have more than one kid in care may be eligible for a greater payment for their second and younger children if they:
- Earn less than $354,305 a year
- have more than one kid under the age of five in child care.
All children will continue to receive their income-tested CCS rate. Those who qualify for the increased rate will immediately have the increase reflected in their CCS percentage reported to Services Australia.
Application for CCS
Families get financial support through having the subsidy paid directly to their daycare providers. This financial aid assists families in lowering their expenses. Families must satisfy certain standards in order to be eligible for CCS.
Families are eligible if at least one parent satisfies all of the following criteria:
care for the kid at least two nights every two weeks, or have 14 percent care responsible for expenses for care given at an authorized early learning agency, and fulfill the residence requirements
The youngster must also satisfy the following requirements:
- immunisation requirements
- not be attending secondary school unless an exemption applies
If a kid is in secondary school, they may still be eligible if they need monitoring. They must either be:
13 years old or younger, 14 to 18 years old with a handicap
The family must provide proof as to why their children cannot be left alone. Evidence of the handicap and proof that an adult is unable to care for the kid during this time period may be included. Those who are required to pay fees must apply for this assistance and fulfill the conditions.
Families may be eligible for additional child care subsidies. This is paid in addition to the CCS to give further assistance. There are many sorts of Additional Child Care Subsidies.
Anyone who is (1) an eligible grandmother receiving an income support payment, (2) transitioning from certain income support payments to employment, (3) suffering temporary financial difficulties, or (4) caring for a child or children vulnerable or at risk of danger, abuse, or neglect may apply.
Approved Childcare Child Care Subsidy is provided for Australian Government-approved services. The following are examples of approved child care:
- Center-Based Day Care, which includes both long-term and short-term care
- Family Day Care
- Outside of school hours care, including before, after, and vacation care In-home care
- In-Home Care
The qualifying requirements for In-Home Care vary. There are several qualifying criteria for In-Home Care. All qualifying standards and extra criteria apply to the Child Care Subsidy.
How to Make a Claim
To apply for CCS, you must complete the following steps:
Step 1: Determine whether or not you are qualified to apply. They should also be familiar with the Family Assistance Law.
Step 2: Request National Law Approval (if relevant)
Step 3: Submit all required documentation and information.
Step 4: Finish the PRODA (Provider Digital Access) registration process.
Step 5: Conduct fitness and properness checks on all workers.
Step 6: Online application submission
Step 7: Wait for the decision on approval.
Services Australia will walk you through the claim procedure for new claims and will assist you in updating a current claim to include a new child. A CCS claim may be made up to 28 days in advance. A Child Care Subsidy lump sum claim cannot be lodged.