In April, the Australian Government introduced a temporary initiative to offer free child care as a supportive measure to help families as the nation began to respond to COVID-19. This free child care assistance ends on the 13th of July. Read on to learn more.

From the 13th of July 2020, the Child Care Subsidy (CCS) and Additional Child Care Subsidy (ACCS) will return.

For Easy English Information, see Child Care Changes from Access Easy English.

New Measures

There will be new measures and a transition of support for providers and families.

  • The Child Care Subsidy is means-tested meaning those who earn the least receive the highest level of subsidy

  • The Government will ease the activity test until the 4th of October

  • Families who have had their hours of activity reduced as a result of COVID-19 will be able to advise Centrelink they meet the requirements - to access 100 hours of subsidised child care per fortnight, for up to 12 weeks

  • Additional absence days without the need for medical evidence to be claimed for COVID-19 related reasons— ends on the 31st of December 2020

  • The 62 initial absence days per child ceases on the 30th of June 2020. There will be n allowable 42 initial absence days in the 2020/21 financial year

  • The Government will be stopping fee increases during the transition

  • From the 13th of July 2020, all requirements of Family Assistance Law apply.

Services Australia has put together 5 steps to follow to make sure you are ready for the changes.

 

Eligibility for the subsidy

If you are new to the subsidy to get this you must:

  • Care for a child 13 or younger who's not attending secondary school, unless an exemption applies

  • Use an approved child care service

  • Be responsible for paying the child care fees

  • Meet residency and immunisation requirements.

  • For full eligibility see You need to meet some requirements.

3 factors determine a family’s level of Child Care Subsidy. These are:

The Child Care Subsidy is usually paid directly to service providers to who pass it on to families as a fee reduction. Families pay the provider the difference between the price charged and the subsidy amount, through a co-contribution to their child care fees.

There is also targeted additional fee assistance for vulnerable families through the Child Care Safety Net.

Families can get an estimated guide of what their entitlements could be by entering their details into the Services Australia Payment and Service Finder.

For more information about the changes, see the Minister’s media release and the Department of Education Skills and Employment Early Childhood Education and Care COVID-19 Frequently Asked Questions.


Information Sourced from

Early Childhood Education and Care Coronavirus (COVID-19)
A return to the Child Care Subsidy  - Ministers’ Media Centre. 
Early Childhood Education and Child Care COVID-19 Frequently Asked Questions 
Services Australia Childcare Subsidy
Access Easy English Child Care June 2020 

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