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Child Care Subsidy

 

From 2 July 2018, Child Care Subsidy (CCS) had replaced the Child Care Benefit (CCB) and Child Care Rebate (CCR). CCS helps families with the cost of approved childcare.

 

Department of Human Services (“Centrelink”) pays this subsidy directly to childcare providers to reduce the fees you pay. The amount you may be eligible for depends on:

  • Your total combined family income
  • How much ‘work-related’ activity (see education.gov.au) you and your partner undertake each fortnight. The entitlement is based on the lesser activity figure for a member of a couple.
  • the hourly rate cap based on the type of childcare you use and your child’s age

 

 

Our Flexible Session Options

Help You Minimise Out-of-Pocket Cost

 

We understand that each family has its individual situations and needs when it comes to your young child and your CCS entitlements. We are here to help you.

 

We offer four different sessions to help you maximise the CCS you can receive from the government, therefore minimise your out-of-pocket cost.

 

You can choose between:

  • a full-day session from 7:00am to 6:00pm, or
  • a 10 hour session from 7:30am to 5:30pm, or
  • a 9 hour session from 8:00am to 5:00pm, or
  • our pre-school hours from 9:00am to 3:00pm (only available on Mondays and Fridays, also subject to space availability and our approval)

Based on how many hours of subsidised care you are entitled to, and your personal situations, we can help you choose the best session that meets your needs and minimise your out-of-pocket cost for childcare. You are welcomed to give us a call during our opening hours to find out how we are able to help.

 

If you have known your CCS percentage and hours, you can also use the CCS Calculator provided by our peak body – Australian Childcare Alliance – for a free and discrete assessment for how much CCS you may be entitled to and how much weekly cost you will be paying out of pocket. We have no data sharing with them at all. So using this link ensures that the privacy of your personal information is totally secure, and there will be no unsolicited contacts sent to you.

 

https://childcarealliance.org.au/blog/142-childcare-subsidy-calculator

 

 

The End of Free Childcare

The Early Childhood Education and Care Relief Package ("free childcare") has been extended until 12 July 2020. The Relief Package was originally scheduled to end on 28 June 2020. From 13 July, the Child Care Subsidy (CCS) and Additional Child Care Subsidy (ACCS) will return, along with new transition measures to support the sector and parents as they move back to the subsidy.

 

In addition, families who have had their hours of activity reduced as a result of COVID-19, will be able to advise Services Australia they meet the requirements to access of 100 hours per fortnight for up to 12 weeks. This can be done through their Centrelink online account through myGov or the Express Plus Centrelink mobile app from 13 July 2020. From 13 July 2020, all requirements of Family Assistance Law apply.

 

The following components of the Relief Package will no longer be in effect as of the following dates:

  • Relief Package ceases on 12 July 2020 which means there will be no more "free" childcare after 12 July 2020.
  • the 62 initial absence days per child cease on 30 June 2020. There will be 42 initial absence days in the 2020/21 Financial Year.
  • With Child Care Subsidy recommencing from 13 July 2020, parents are obliged to pay gap fees as usual.
  • additional absence days to be claimed for COVID-19 related reasons without the need for medical evidence - ceases on 31 December 2020.

How can eligible families get the 100 hours activity test result?

 

From 13 July 2020 until 4 October 2020, individuals who can no longer engage in the same number of hours of work, training, study or other activity recognised by the CCS activity test prior to the COVID-19 crisis, are entitled to an activity test result of 100 hours of subsidised child care per fortnight. These cohorts include:

  • Individuals who are doing less recognised activity than they were immediately prior to COVID-19
  • Individuals who are a member of a couple who are doing less recognised activity than they were immediately prior to COVID-19
  • Individuals in receipt of carers allowance who have reduced any other recognised activity than what they were engaged in immediately prior to COVID-19.

From 13 July 2020, families will be able to advise Services Australia they meet these requirements to access the 100 hours. This can be done through their Centrelink online account through myGov or the Express Plus Centrelink mobile app.

 

No other CCS activity test requirements have been changed, however, the more hours of recognised activity families do, the more hours of subsidised care they can access, up to a maximum of 100 hours per fortnight for each child. 

 

This result will not be backdated more than 28 days.

 

What CCS rate will be applicable if I am eligible for 100 hours subsidised care? 

 

The percentage of subsidy a family is entitled to is based on combined annual family income. Families earning $68,163 or less receive the maximum CCS rate of 85 per cent of the actual fee charged, or of the relevant hourly rate cap (whichever is lower). As family income increases the rate of subsidy decreases, reaching zero per cent at $352,453. Families with incomes at or above this threshold have no CCS entitlement. This ensures more financial support is targeted to the families who need it most to access child care.

 

Can I get 100 hours of CCS per fortnight if I’m doing the same number of hours of recognised activity I did prior to the COVID-19 crisis and am entitled to less than 100 hours per fortnight?

 

The CCS activity test results have not changed for individuals who are still engaged in the same number of hours, or were engaged in less than eight hours of recognised activity prior to the COVID-19 crisis. 

 

Can I get 100 hours of CCS per fortnight if I engaged in less than eight hours of recognised activity prior to the COVID-19 crisis? 

 

The temporary easing of the activity test requirements is only for individuals who had an activity test result of more than zero prior to COVID-19 crisis and can no longer engage in the same number hours of recognised activity.

The more hours of recognised activity families do, the more hours of subsidised care they can access, up to a maximum of 100 hours per fortnight for each child. Hours spent engaging in different recognised activities can be combined together to determine your entitlement of subsidised hours.

 

Can my family now receive 100 hours per fortnight, even though prior to the COVID-19 crisis my partner’s lower CCS activity test result meant that my family was entitled to below 100 hours per fortnight? 

 

From 13 July 2020 to 4 October 2020, a couple is now entitled to an activity test result of 100 hours of CCS per fortnight if:

  1. both partners had an activity test result of more than zero; and
  2. either partner can no longer engage in the same number of hours of activity as they did before the COVID-19 crisis.

Otherwise, the existing requirement remains where the hours of subsidised care the partnered/couple is entitled to is determined by the person with the lowest number of hours of activity per fortnight.  

 

Will my child/ren need to meet the immunisation requirements? 

 

Your child must meet immunisation requirements if you receive CCS. To meet the requirements, all of your children need to do one of the following:

If you received CCS and your child stops meeting these requirements, you have 63 days to start meeting them again. If you don’t, your subsidy will stop.

 

For more information visit the Services Australia website. 

 

Source of information: 

https://www.dese.gov.au/covid-19/childcare/childcare-faq#section-arrangements-following-the-end-of-early-childhood-education-and-care-relief-package