At The Green Elephant, we don’t only believe in delivering world-class early learning child care services, we also strive to support families with every aspect of the process by utilising our years of industry experience.
With our guide to Child Care Subsidy, you’ll be ready to complete your application in no time.
What Is It?
The Australian Child Care Subsidy is a financial support service for parents that is designed to reduce the costs of child care. It is paid directly by the Australian Government to your child care provider, leaving you to simply pay the remaining balance.
Primarily, then, it is designed to help working families get back to work and receive the child care they need without breaking the bank.
Are You Eligible?
The Child Care Subsidy is open to both single and two-parent households. However, a number of requirements need to be met in order for you to apply. Firstly, your child must be 13 or younger, and not currently in secondary school. However, exemptions do exist for children that require extra supervision, as well as teenagers under the age of 18 that have a registered disability.
As a parent or parents, you will need to prove that you:
- Are responsible for your child’s care for at least 2 nights in ever 14, or a minimum of 14% of the total care.
- Are liable for the child care costs, and will use an approved child care facility like The Green Elephant early learning centre.
- Live in Australia and possess citizenship, a permanent visa, a Special Category visa, or Partner Provisional visa.
The Australian Government additionally offers an Additional Child Care Subsidy programme for grandparents or families experiencing temporary financial hardships.
What Level Of Support Is Available?
Rather than offering a set fee to all families, the Australian Child Care Subsidy programme calculates the support on a case-by-case basis. Our Child Care Subsidy calculator will help you determine the exact level of support you may expect to receive. Before doing this, though, you should familiarise yourself with the contributing factors that will help dictate how much support you are entitled to. They are:
Household income levels are the most telling attribute in the calculation. Families earning under $69,390 can receive up to 85% of the total child care costs. While the percentage subsequently falls as earnings increase, everyone earning under $353,680 can claim at least 20%.
Hourly Rate Cap
As well as only making payments to approved child care providers, the Government will only pay up to a maximum hourly value. For centre-based care, the cap is set to $12.20 per hour. Family Day Cares are $11.30. Out-of-school vocation care is $10.67 and in-home care is $33.17 per family.
Those figures must also comply with the family income.
To get the subsidy, you must also complete an approved activity. The list includes paid and voluntary work, self-employment, and starting a business, educational courses, and volunteer work.
The number of hours will influence how much care falls under the programme. Parents working over 48 hours can get up to 100 hours of support while those doing 8-16 hours can receive 36 hours of help.
Making A Claim
If you believe that you are eligible for the Child Care Subsidy, the next step is to make a claim. The following steps must be taken:
- Set up a myGov account that is linked to Centrelink.
- Confirm your identity.
- Prepare the necessary supporting documents – financial, study, employment, living, relationships, medical, and child care files are all needed.
- From myGov, navigate to Payment and Claims → Claims → Make a claim → Families → Get started.
- Complete all information as prompted by the series of screens.
- Confirm the submission of your claim.
Once completed, you receive an email to confirm receipt of the application. Using the ID number supplied, you’ll be able to track the progress throughout. The myGov website will email the result, although you can check back to your account if you fear you’ve missed confirmation.
Assuming the claim is successful, the payment will be made to the child care provider on an automated basis. However, you will need to contact the Child Care Subsidy team if your circumstances (financial or child care requirements) change.