Exciting changes are coming to the child care subsidy to offer greater assistance to families. These changes were announced in the recent 2021-22 Budget and are being implemented earlier than expected to provide more support to families sooner.
Busy Bees are welcoming these changes for the early learning sector, as an important step to assisting families in re-entering the workforce post-pandemic and in making care more accessible and affordable for all families.
The below information has been provided by the Department of Education, Skills and Employment to help families understand these changes and how they may apply to their individual situation.
Use our CCS Calculator to determine your childcare subsidy entitlements
Annual cap to be removed from December 2021
From 10 December 2021, the annual cap will be removed for all families who receive CCS.
If a family has already reached the annual cap before 10 December, their CCS may have stopped. Services Australia will automatically reassess their CCS entitlements for this time, and back pay CCS for any affected sessions of care.
Higher CCS for families with multiple children in care
From 7 March 2022, families with more than one child aged under five attending care will be eligible for a higher subsidy rate for their second and subsequent children.
Families may be eligible if they:
- Earn less than $354,305 combined income per year
- Have more than one child aged under five attending care
Which child receives the higher subsidy?
Under the new changes for families with multiple children attending care, one child will receive the standard subsidy rate, while second or subsequent children will receive a higher subsidy rate.
Services Australia will determine which children receive the higher subsidy rate by:
- Assessing all children in the family unit
- Identifying the standard rate child
- Identifying the higher rate child
The standard rate child is usually the eldest child in the family unit aged five or under who is attending care. However, it could be another child depending on when children were enrolled in care.
How much will higher rate children receive?
Eligible higher rate children will receive a 30% higher subsidy, up to a maximum of 95%.
Children eligible for the higher CCS rate will have the increase automatically included in their CCS percentage reported to services. Payments will align with the first CCS fortnight of the 2022–23 financial year.
What do families need to do?
Families already receiving CCS payments don’t need to do anything. Services Australia will automatically increase the CCS for eligible second and younger children from 7 March 2022.
For families new to CCS, a child must receive a session of care before they can be considered the standard rate child.
For families with children born on the same date, Services Australia will automatically determine which child is the standard rate and apply the higher rate to other children.
For more information on these changes, please visit the Department of Education, Skills and Employment or the Services Australia website.
If you have any questions or concerns regarding these CCS changes and what they mean for you and your family, your Service Manager is happy to assist.