Child Care Subsidy
Update: Due to COVID-19, Child Care Subsidy (CCS) is canceled during the period between 6 April and 28 June 2020. However, you should ensure you stay eligible for Child Care Subsidy which will start again on 29 June 2020. For more details, please click here.
For latest childcare policy due to COVID-19, please visit this page.
On 2 July 2018, the new Child Care Subsidy (CCS) has begun. This replaces the Child Care Benefit (CCB) and Child Care Rebate (CCR) Systems. The updated CCS will be able to help Australian families by bringing another $600 million a year. Aside from that, it will allow families to access childcare easier.
With the new CCS, the Government can also provide more assistance to low and middle-class families.
Child Subsidy Eligibility
In order to be qualified to receive the Child Care Subsidy for a child, you must meet these basic requirements:
the child must be 13 years old or under. The child should also not attending secondary school.
there should be child meeting immunisation requirements
the individual/parent should meet the residency requirements
Aside from these prerequisites, the individual must be accountable to pay for a child care provider. The care must be offered in Australia. It should also be administered by an approved child care provider. Moreover, the care provided should not be part of a compulsory education program.
How to calculate your CCS
Here is how to compute your CCS:
Child Care Subsidy = CCS% x Hours of Care x Hourly Rate
CCS can be determined according to these three components.
1. CCS% – total family income
CCS% is computed from the combined household income. Here is an overview of how much subsidy you’ll get depending on your total family income. Just remember that these tax brackets will be adjusted depending on the CPI (Consumer Price Index) every financial year.
Family income – Subsidy you'll get
Up to $66,958 – 85%
$66,958–$171,958 – 85–50%
$171,958–$251,248 – 50%
$251,248–$341,248 – 50–20%
$341,248–$351,248 – 20%
More than $351,248 – No subsidy
2. Hours of Care – activity of the least active family member
Under the new system, you can only access CCS if you are doing certain activity. With that, the amount of activity will determine how many hours of CCS you are qualified for.
Activity should be either of the following:
Paid work (including unpaid lunch breaks)
Commute time from childcare centre to work (excluding the time travelling from home to childcare centre and vice versa)
Authorised leave (e.g. maternity leave, annual leave, long service leave, etc.)
Unpaid leave of up to 6 months
Unpaid work in a family business
Setting up a new business
Training and study (including semester breaks)
Work experience/internships (whether paid or not)
Looking for work (e.g. internet research, contacting employers, preparing resumes/letters of application, preparing for and attending job interviews, travel time for interviews, etc.)
The activity level is calculated using the parent with the least number of hours of activity. Here is an illustration to understand it better.
Hours of "activity" – Hours of subsidised care (per fortnight/period of 2 weeks)
8–16 per fortnight – 36 per fortnight
16–48 per fortnight – 72 per fortnight
48+ per fortnight – 100 per fortnight
3. Hourly rate – lower of benchmark fee and centre hourly fee
The annual benchmark rate is set by the government. Thus, the calculation of CCS is determined by the lower of the benchmark rate or centre’s hourly fee
Under the new CCS system, the annual cap or limit on Government support will be terminated for most families. This means that cap will be removed completely for families who are earning less than $186,000 annually. Moreover, for families earning between $186,000 and $351,000, the cap will be increased from around $7,600 to $10,000.
What can you do next?
If you need more information about Child Care Subsidy, GSG is eager to assist you. Call them at (02) 8377 3615. You can also make an enquiry or visit their centre here: Suite 1-4, Block A, 81-86 Courallie Ave, Homebush West NSW 2140.