HM Government Childcare Choices

What do childcare providers need to know?

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Parents will soon start applying for two new government schemes to help with the cost of childcare: Tax-Free Childcare and 30 hours free childcare.

 

Find out how the new schemes affect you.

Parents will soon start applying for two new government schemes to help with the cost of childcare: Tax-Free Childcare and 30 hours free childcare.

 

Find out how the new schemes affect you.

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Tax-Free Childcare

What does Tax-Free Childcare mean for me?

Tax-Free Childcare offers parents with children under 12 up to £2,000 per child, per year, towards their childcare costs (or under 17 and up to £4,000 for disabled children). Eligible parents entering the scheme will open an online childcare account that they can use to pay you for childcare. Payments will work just as they would through an online bank account, using a reference number for each child so you can identify their payments. 

You will only be able to receive Tax-Free Childcare payments from your customers if you’ve signed up to receive payments from the scheme.

You can find information and materials on Childcare Choices in our stakeholder toolkit

How do I sign up as a provider?

Over September and October 2016, letters were sent to registered childcare providers across the UK inviting providers to sign up online, and setting out the information needed to do this. 

If you’ve only recently registered, an invite will be automatically generated once we’ve received registration confirmation from your regulator.

What happens next?

Ahead of the introduction of Tax-Free Childcare, parents will be able to use the childcare calculator to find out if they are eligible and how much they could receive.

They’ll also be able to use a digital tool to see which childcare providers have signed up to receive Tax-Free Childcare.

Find out more about the top things you need to know about Tax-Free Childcare.

30 hours free childcare

What does 30 hours mean for me?

From September 2017, 30 hours will be available for 3 and 4-year-old children of working parents in England. This is in addition to the existing 15 hours, which all 3 and 4-year-olds, and some 2-year-olds, can currently receive.

Eight 'early implementer' local authorities started delivering 30 hours one year early in September 2016. Four new 'early rollout' areas will go live from April 2017.

Parents will be able to check their eligibility for 30 hours through the childcare calculator, and apply for both Tax-Free Childcare and 30 hours through a joint application. Parents will bring you an eligibility code and National Insurance number. You will be able to check the code with your local authority, so the parent can receive the additional funded hours.

What do I need to do to get ready to deliver 30 hours?

Get in contact with the early years lead at your local authority as soon as possible to help you get your business ready for 30 hours.

Childcare Works is the government's official 30 hours delivery contractor. Check the Childcare Works website for information and news about events for providers.

More 30 hours resources for providers can also be found on the Foundation Years website.

You can find 30 hours eligibility information and Statutory Guidance on GOV.uk. There are also some Frequently Asked Questions on the Childcare Works website. Operational guidance featuring case studies and practical advice will be published later in the Spring. 

You can also find business sustainability advice from other providers and from the government.

You can find information and materials on Childcare Choices in our stakeholder toolkit

What happens next?

Get in touch with your local authority to find out what local support is on offer to prepare your business for 30 hours.