About the Australian Government Childcare Subsidy

What is the Child Care Subsidy (CCS)?

The Child Care Subsidy (CCS) is the main way the Government assists families with their child care fees, and is targeted to provide greater assistance to low and middle income families. The Child Care Subsidy subsidises the cost of early childhood education and care services that are authorised and eligible for the CCS.

Who is eligible to receive the Child Care Subsidy?

Some basic requirements must be satisfied for an individual to be eligible to receive CCS for a child. These include:

  • the child must be aged 13 or under and not attending secondary school, except in certain circumstances where an individual may be eligible for a child who does not meet this criteria, such as children with a disability or medical condition in certain circumstances
  • the individual must care of the child at least 2 nights per fortnight or have 14% per cent of care or be receiving Family Tax Benefit for the child
  • the child must meet immunisation requirements
  • the individual, or their partner, must meet the residency requirements

In addition, to be eligible for CCS the individual must be liable to pay for care provided, the care must be delivered in Australia by an approved child care provider, and not be part of a compulsory education program.

What early childhood education and care services are eligible for the Child Care Subsidy?

To be eligible to receive the Child Care Subsidy, you must be using an approved service.

These are services that have Australian Government approval to get Child Care Subsidy on your behalf to reduce your fees.

Approved child care includes:

  • Centre Based Day Care, including long day care and occasional care
  • Family Day Care
  • Outside School Hours Care, including before, after and vacation care
  • In Home Care.

All early childhood education and care services listed on KindiCare are registered with The Australian Children's Education & Care Quality Authority (ACECQA).

What is the Child Care Subsidy entitlement?

There are three main factors that determine the about of Child Care Subsidy you and your family will receive. These are:

  • Combined annual family income
  • Activity test – the activity level of both parents
  • Service type – type of child care service and whether the child attends school

CCS  is generally paid directly to service providers to be passed on to families as a fee reduction. Families make a co-contribution to their child care fees and pay to the provider the difference between the fee charged and the subsidy amount (also called the out of pocket fee).

To support disadvantaged and vulnerable children attend quality early childhood education and care, state and territory governments can contribute to the out of pocket fee on behalf of the family. For more information, visit Third party payment of gap fees.

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

Families can get an estimate of what they may be entitled to by entering their details into the Services Australia Payment and Service Finder

How much is the Child Care Subsidy and what does it cover?

The Child Care Subsidy covers a proportion of the cost of early childhood education and care services for eligible registered services. The amount of subsidy your family is eligible depends on your families total combined income, the type of child care services you use, and how many hours you spend each week in approved activities, such as working or undertaking training courses.

The Child Care Subsidy percentage you receive is based on your family income. For the 2021/2022 Financial Year, the following applies:

Your family income

Child Care Subsidy percentage

$0 to $70,015


More than $70,015 to below $175,015

Between 85% and 50%
The percentage goes down by 1% for every $3,000 of income your family earns

$175,015 to below $254,305


$254,305 to below $344,305

Between 50% and 20%
The percentage goes down by 1% for every $3,000 of income your family earns

$344,305 to below $354,405


$354,405 or more


For more information on the percentage of Child Care Subsidy you’re entitled to visit: https://www.servicesaustralia.gov.au/individuals/services/centrelink/child-care-subsidy/how-much-you-can-get/your-income-can-affect-it

What changes have been introduced from the 7th of March 2022?

In addition to the "cap" being removed on 10 December 2021, from the 7th of March 2022, any family with two or more children aged 5 and under will be eligable to receive an additional subsidy up to 95% of the fees being charged for an approved early learning service. 

To accomodate this, KindiCare has enhanced our Search with Subsidy feature so you can see the fees for one child as well as the fees for any additional children based on the additional subsidy that applies if you have two ore more children 5 and under attending early learning services.

For more information on these changes and to check if you're eligable, please visit: https://www.dese.gov.au/child-care-subsidy/higher-child-care-subsidy-and-removal-annual-cap 

Where can I find out more information on the Child Care Subsidy?

You can find more information about the Child Care Subsidy, including eligibility requirements at: https://www.servicesaustralia.gov.au/child-care-subsidy

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