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Help with childcare costs

(5 Posts)
Spindelina Fri 10-Jul-15 12:49:40

Could somebody please explain (or link) the current situation re help with childcare costs? CCVs, 15 hours, 30 hours etc. Particilarly wrt eligibility.

My situation is as follows:
Me: working a bit less than FT for c.£30k, receive CCVs.
DH: still technically self employed, but to cut a long story short, not currently trading.
DD: will be 3 this month, in nursery three days a week. Under the old system she would get her 15 hours in September.

We are thinking about what DH should do (start a new business / SAH), and whether we can afford to keep DD in nursery. And we are contemplating DC2, so it would be good to understand the implications for future DC.

I think...
- we remain eligible for my CCVs for the mean time (as long as I don't leave the scheme)
- we won't get the increased free hours, unless DH starts clearing some profit (how much?) in a new business, or gets a job (he'd make a crap employee, though!).

What about the 15 hours? We've kept DD in nursery on the basis that the cost will decrease in September, but is that still the case?

Any help much appreciated.

Spindelina Sun 12-Jul-15 19:19:31


Rockchick1984 Sun 12-Jul-15 21:09:56

You still get the 15 hours. Not sure on the other things though sorry!

nannynick Sun 12-Jul-15 22:21:23

30 hours is being piloted from September 2016. It is part of The Childcare Bill which is currently going through the House or Lords. You can follow it's progress and read some of the debate, such as this from 6.July.2015

The 30 hours is expected to be split over the academic year, some providers may then spread it out over the whole year, in the same way as it is possible now with the 15 hours nursery education.

The 15 hours is available from the term following the child's 3rd birthday, so in your case that should be September. Ask the nursery for the form to complete so that the nursery can apply for the funding. The nursery may offer the whole 15 hours or they may not. It applies during term time only, unless the nursery has an arrangement with the local authority to split it over a full year. Maximum is 570 hours.
Your nursery or local authority should be able to provide more information about Free Early Education Entitlement.

Childcare voucher scheme (CCV) is expected to run until at least 2017. The new Tax Free Childcare scheme (TFC) is not expected to start until Jan 2017 and may be later in that year. It was due to start in September this year but has been delayed due to a legal situation.

For the 15 hours additional funding from 2016, there will be eligibility requirements. Bottom of page 5 and top of page 6 of this document (pdf) says that both parents must be working at least 8 hours per week at NMW or above. How that will be assessed for self employed parents is unclear to me at this time.

Spindelina Mon 13-Jul-15 12:29:07

Thanks, both.

DD's nursery definitely do the 15 hours, so that's fine. Not entirely sure how they count lunch times and so on, but we know that our nursery bill will get a chunk lower for the next year, anyway.

And as for putative DC2, I think my best plan is to stay in the CCV scheme while I can, and then see what happens.

Do you know what the proposed eligibility for TFC might be? I've read that it will only be available if both parents are working, but any ideas how that might work for the self-employed?

I'm assuming that once TFC is available, we'd need to make a choice between that and CCVs (not both), and that if we choose TFC, we won't be able to go back to CCVs. Which would mean we'd have to be pretty confident in DH's business prospects before I left the CCV scheme.

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