If you’re a working parent or carer, you can get up to £500 every three months (up to £2000 a year per child) to help with the costs of childcare. If your child has a disability, you can get up to £1000 every three months (up to £4000 a year per child).
You can use it to pay for approved childcare (check your provider is signed up to the scheme) including:
• Childminders, nurseries, and nannies
• Playschemes, before and after school clubs, and holiday clubs
Am I eligible?
To get Tax-Free Childcare, you need to be working at least 16 hours a week, earning at least the National Minimum Wage or National Living Wage. This includes being:
• On maternity, paternity, shared parental or adoption leave
• On sick leave or annual leave
Your child is eligible until the September after their 11th birthday, or until their 17th birthday if they have a disability. Each parent or carer can earn up to £100,000 per year and still be eligible for Tax-Free Childcare. Your eligibility doesn’t depend on how much tax you pay, so it won’t affect your income tax liability or any other tax, like VAT. You can also get Tax-Free Childcare at the same time as 30 hours free childcare if you’re eligible for both.
You can’t claim Tax-Free Childcare at the same time as Working Tax Credit, Child Tax Credit, Universal Credit or childcare vouchers.
If you’re not working
You may still be eligible if your partner is working, and you get Incapacity Benefit, Severe Disablement Allowance, Carer’s Allowance or contribution-based Employment and Support Allowance. You can apply if you’re starting or re-starting work within the next 31 days.
How it works
You set up an online childcare account for your child. For every £8 you pay into this account, the government will pay in £2, up to a maximum of £2000 a year (or £4000 if your child has a disability). You can then use the money to pay your childcare provider. You need to reconfirm your eligibility for Tax-Free Childcare every three months.
Find out more
To find out how much you could get towards your childcare costs and check whether you’re eligible visit www.gov.uk/get-tax-free-childcare
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