Starting childcare can be a confusing process filled with a lot of paperwork. This post breaks down the 2 forms of financial assistance available to parents. We have also included useful links and forms to help you along your journey.
Child Care Benefit (CCB)
Child Care Benefit is income tested and based on family income, meaning that the amount each family is entitled to will vary case by case.
In order to apply or see if you are eligible for the Child Care Benefit, go to Human Services online or in person.
Eligibility for the Child Care Benefit
- Your child must be attending an approved child care or registered child care service
- You or your partner must meet the residency and child’s immunisation requirements*
- You must be the person responsible for paying the child care fees.
For further information, click here to read more
Child Care Rebate (CCR)
Child Care Rebate is a government initiative that assists families in covering the out- of- pocket expenses of child care. CCR is not income tested. An income test is a means to work out ones eligibility for a number of tax offsets and benefits. Income tests use items such as tax returns to calculate rebate percentages. If your families total income is too high for you to be eligible for the Child Care Benefit, the rebate can cover up to 50 per cent of the out-of-pocket costs, up to $7,500 per child, per year.
When it comes to receiving these Child Care Rebate payments, there are several options. Payments can be made either directly into your account or through your child care provider. If you opt for payments to be made into your account, you can receive payments;
Eligibility for the Child Care Rebate
- You and your spouse must have work, training or study related commitments (or have an exemption) at some time during the week care is provided.
- You must be using approved child care.
- You or your partner must be an Australian citizen, a permanent resident living in Australia or be exempted from the Australian Government’s residency requirements.
- Children under the age of seven must meet the Australian Government’s immunisation requirements.
- You must be the one responsible for your child care costs. If your employer contributes to your child care through some form of packaging, you should discuss with them who is responsible for the cost.
For more information, click here to read more
Immunisation requirements fall under the *No Jab No Pay legislation, from 1 January 2016. In order to be eligible for CCB, or to enrol your child in a childcare service, parents must ensure their children meet the immunisation requirements which now apply for all children up to the age of 19. Children are now required to be;
- fully immunised
- on a catch-up schedule, or
- have a valid exemption in order to receive these payments.
Conscientious objection is no longer an exemption category, however it is important to note that children with a recognised medical exemption (verified by a General Practitioner) such as medical contraindication, natural immunity or participation in a recognised vaccine study will continue to be exempt from the requirements.
How to claim the Child Care Rebate?
You will need to apply for the Child Care Benefit first, there is no separate claim form for the Child Care Rebate. The form you will need to fill out is the Claim and notes for Child Care Benefit for registered care form (FA018). You can apply for the Child Care Benefit in person or online. For online applications visit the Department of Human Services
To find out how much assistance you could receive by using the child care estimator.