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Child Care Subsidy (CCS)

The Y Whittlesea provides child care to give your children a fun, friendly and stimulating environment. We’re an approved and registered child care service offering Early Learning, Creche and Occasional Care

Child care subsidy (CCS) is a government-funded program to assist parents and families, making child care more accessible and readily available for everyone. 

Who Is eligible?

While CCS is available for a large majority of the population, eligibility still applies. In order to be eligible for CCS, you must meet the following requirements.

  • 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.

How is it processed?

When receiving CCS, it’s paid directly to an approved and registered child care service, such as the Y, and it’s then passed on to parents as a fee reduction. Then the remaining amount (the gap) is paid by the parent. 

How much can you receive?

How much CCS you are eligible to receive is dependent on the four following factors.

Combined family Income

Families earning a lower combined income are eligible for greater support, where they can receive a maximum of 90% subsidy. Families with a higher income will receive less support, and those with a combined amount of $530,000 or more will not receive any CCS. Below is a table detailing all the income amounts and the CCS rate available.

Your family income Child Care Subsidy percentage
$0 to $80,000 90%
More than $80,000 to below $530,000 Between 90% and 0%
The percentage goes down by 1% for every $5,000 of income your family earns above $80,000
$530,000 or more 0%

Activity Test

Parents will also need to meet the requirements of the activity test unless exempt parents must pass one of the following requirements. 

  • Paid work, including being self-employed.
  • Paid or unpaid leave, including paid or unpaid parental or maternity leave.
  • Unpaid work in a family business.
  • Unpaid work experience or unpaid internship.
  • Actively setting up a business.

In addition to these, activities can also include any of the following. 

  • Doing an approved course of education or study.
  • Doing training to improve work skills or employment prospects.
  • Volunteering.
  • Other activities on a case by case basis. 

The government will only recognise some of these activities for a certain amount of time. Listed below is what is counted towards this. 

  • Periods of unpaid leave for up to six months this doesn’t apply to unpaid parental leave.
  • Setting up a business for six months out of every 12 months.

Families can receive 24 hours if they do less than 8 hours and their income is less than $80,000. With the maximum number of eligible hours over 48 hours per fortnight, allowing for a maximum of 100 hours of subsidy. The activity test is broken down into four different levels. This is outlined in the table below. 

Activity level each fortnight Hours of subsidised care each fortnight
Less than 8 hours 0 hours if you earn above $80,000
24 hours if you earn $80,000 or below
More than 8 to 16 hours 36 hours
More than 16 to 48 hours 72 hours
More than 48 hours 100 hours

You can access up to 36 hours of subsided child care per fortnight if your only activity is either volunteering or actively looking for work. To gain access to this amount, you must spend a minimum of 8 hours each fortnight doing the activity.

Type of Service 

CCS is calculated based on an hourly rate, with fee deductions depending on the type of service used. Below is a table outlining the type of child care and the hourly rate cap.

Type of child care Hourly rate cap
Centre Based Day Care – long day care and occasional care $13.73
Family Day Care $12.72
Outside School Hours Care – before, after and vacation care $12.02
In Home Care $37.34 per family

These rates limit the amount of CCS the government will provide. If child care is less than the hourly rate cap, the subsidy amount depends on the percentage of the fee charged.

Number Of Children 

Those with more than one child under the age of five or younger in child care are eligible to get a higher level of CCS. Listed below are the requirements to receive a higher CCS

  • You get or will be eligible for CCS.
  • Your family’s combined income is under $362,408.
  • You have more than one CCS eligible child aged five or younger.
  • Your higher rate child or children are using child care.

If you have more than one child aged five or under, we’ll assess which children get the higher subsidy by working out both. 

  • The standard rate child. 
  • The higher rate child or, the higher rate of children.

The higher subsidy rate is only applied if you have more than one eligible child aged 5 or under. 

How Much Will I get?

You can get a 30% higher subsidy for your ‘higher rate child’. This is a 30% increase in your standard CCS percentage. However, this is capped at 95%. You’ll continue to receive your standard CCS percentage for your ‘standard rate child’ and any children aged 6 or above.

How to claim?

To claim CCS, you’ll need to apply through Services Australia. Here you’ll be guided through the process for new claims, and you can update existing claims. CCS can be backdated up to 28 days. However, you can’t make a lump sum claim.

How the Y can help

The Y is here to be a support system within the community. So for those families, parents or caregivers with any further questions about eligibility, we recommend you contact us so we can help.