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child tax credits/salary sacrifice schemes and childcare payment question

(5 Posts)
Pavlovthecat Sat 03-Sep-11 16:27:18

Can you claim for school breakfast and after school club fees as childcare costs with CTC and with salary sacrifice schemes?

If I were able to do this and chose the CTC route not the salary sacrifice route, how would i notify them if it was sporadic use? my DH is going to work on a shift system so some weeks he will be available to drop/collect them from school alternately, and some weeks we will need both sessions for two children for two or three days. Would I just let them know each month that it changes?

CogitoErgoSometimes Sat 03-Sep-11 17:52:35

Yes you can claim what you spend on after-school club fees. If it's not a regular thing it's best to go with a reasonable average rather than keep changing your claim too often. i.e. if you spend £200 some months and £0 in others, claim for £100 per month. Whether you'd be awarded anything depends on the household income... see this benefit checker

HappyMummyOfOne Sat 03-Sep-11 17:55:15

You cant claim both on the same amount. If you qualify for childcare assistance with tax credits you need to sit down with the shift rota and work out the yearly cost and then average it down over 52 weeks.

They now contact childcare providers and do spot checks more than ever so you need to ensure you can substantiate your claim if you are subject to an end of year check. Keep all your receipts.

Pavlovthecat Sat 03-Sep-11 18:26:12

oh excellent! I should be able to average it out, as shifts are not too all over the place, and am happy to give a correct end of year figure, and pay back any difference, as if there would be a discrepancy it would be likely be pounds not hundreds of pounds. Good idea to keep receipts to evidence costs. I guess I just need to let TC people know it is an average? As the forms state if it goes up or down by £10 to let them know, it would often fluctuate between the two.

My normal daytime childcare (nursery/pre-school) would be fixed so I would have a basic same amount per month every month til my son is 3 and eligible for a funded place.

It would be the additional before and after-school costs that would very from week to week (or, maybe month to month, not sure yet) depending on shift patterns. DD is at primary school, and the pre-school is within that school so they would both go to school/pre-school and any before/after school club together on the days required, so should not be too complicated.

Pavlovthecat Sat 03-Sep-11 18:30:58

cogito, we would be eligible for some support with childcare according to the benefits checker, we are however presuming that we get nothing, and anything else is a bonus!

At this stage, I think we would likely to have more financial assistance from TC route than the salary sacrifice route at this stage, due to the income DH will be earning this year (less than half a full years wage), but as of April it may be that the salary sacrifice will give us a saving bigger than any assistance from CT (if any at that point).

It is all a bit If and When at this stage though as DH has a start date, an hourly salary but no idea of how many hours yet! So I am working on several probabilities as I need to sort childcare out quite soon!

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