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Child Care Subsidy (CCS)

How Does The New Child Care Subsidy Work For Me?

In early July, the Federal Government introduced a new Child Care Package to bring more support to more families across Australia.

The package replaced the Child Care Benefit and the Child Care Rebate with a single, means-tested Child Care Subsidy.

What Should I Know About The Child Care Subsidy?

There are three key factors that determine how much Child Care Subsidy families may receive:

  • The combined family income– how much families earn
  • Your fortnightly family activity level– how much families work, train, study or volunteer
  • The fees charged by the child care service

Child Care Subsidy Facts:

  • Families earning $66,958 or less receive a subsidy of 85% of their child care fees (up to the rate cap of $11.77 per hour).
  • For families earning over $66,958 to under $171,958, the subsidy gradually tapers down from 85% to 50%, receiving 1% less for every $3000.
  • Families earning $171,958 to under $251,248 will receive a subsidy 50% of their fees.
  • For families earning $251,248 to under $341,248, the subsidy gradually tapers down from 50% to 20%, receiving 1% less for every $3000.
  • Families on $341,248 to under $351,248 will receive a subsidy of 20% of their fees, while families on income $351,248 or more will receive no subsidy.
  • The annual cap has been abolished entirely for families with income less than $186,958 a year. For families earning more than $186,958 a year the cap will be lifted to $10,190 per child per year.
  • In two parent families, both parents must engage in recognised activity for at least 8 hours a fortnight to receive the subsidy (unless exempt).
  • Recognised activities include but are not limited to: paid work (including leave), approved study or training, actively seeking work, volunteering and self-employment.
  • Families can access up to a maximum of 100 hours of subsidised care per fortnight dependent on how much they are working, studying or doing other approved activity.
  • New hourly rate cap of $11.77 per hour subsidy will be introduced for centre-based care which the Government will use when determining your level of subsidy. However, your child care service may charge above or below this amount. The Government will use the lower amount to calculate any subsidy entitlement.
  • In most cases, the subsidy will be paid directly to child care providers, in which case you only pay the difference between the fee charged by your service and the amount subsidised by the Government.
  • 5 per cent of your weekly Child Care Subsidy entitlement will be withheld by the government. Following reconciliation of your tax return at the end of the financial year, any amount owing to you will be paid as a lump sum by the government. If you have been paid too much Child Care Subsidy, you will have a debt to repay.
  • A new Additional Child Care Subsidy (ACCS) will replace the Special Child Care Benefit, JETCCFA and Grandparent Child Care Benefit. The ACCS provides a higher level of subsidy than the regular Child Care Subsidy, in recognition of the circumstances the child and/or family is facing.
  • 24 hours of subsidised care per fortnight will be available for children from families on a combined income less than $66,958 pa who do not meet the activity test requirements.

The Amount Of The New Child Care Subsidy Will Depend On Three Key Things:

  • How much ‘recognised work related’ activity you and your partner undertake each fortnight. The entitlement is based on the lesser activity figure for a member of a couple.
  • What your combined family income is.
  • The child care fees you pay.

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