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Being charged for Childcare Voucher system

(12 Posts)
ilkainnorthants Wed 20-Aug-08 21:24:27

Hi, my company has just started the Childcare Voucher system. We have not gone with any of the big providers but have set it up ourselves. Our company employes about 12 staff and we are 2 in total that can take advantage of the voucher system. My nursery now tells me that because our system is not on their 'approved' list and we have not more than 10 parents on the system (with their nursery) I will have to pay a monthly charge of £10 for the administration of the vouchers from my company. Has anyone heard of this approach before? I feel this to be rather unfair towards parents employed by small companies. Any comment appreciated.

Bowddee Wed 20-Aug-08 21:28:08

I think you can sign up to one of the big providers anyway.

TBH the Nursery my DS has been going to (and leaves tomorrow - sob ) has a lot of problems with vouchers. I can understand why they've done it. Sorry.

ilkainnorthants Wed 20-Aug-08 22:19:39

I do appreciate that they must have quite a bit of hazzle with the vouchers, while parents and their employers actually do save abit of money. But to then say that a small minority has to pay for ever ones mistakes seems not right. We haven't used one of the large providers because they charge management fees for things we can very easily deal with ourselves in our company. I still think that a charge for all or a penalising fee for any wrongdoers would be fairer.

amidaiwish Wed 20-Aug-08 23:08:18

that's why a lot of small companies don't offer them.

i've never managed to be able to use them.

don't start me off on this or i might explode through frustrations. why we can't just put it on our tax return as a tax deductible expense has always puzzled me... probably because the way it is now such a low proportion of people can actually get the benefit.

jura Wed 20-Aug-08 23:20:13

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

elkiedee Wed 20-Aug-08 23:29:32

Employers are charged admin fees by companies doing vouchers, but they're normally outweighed by savings for employer's NI contributions.

I can't see why, once it's set up, it really costs the nursery £10 in admin fees to deal with it. Not every month.

We had hassle with the vouchers, the only difficult bit for my CM was having to deal with all the forms, but I was very happy that she and her husband did put in the effort to do it. Vouchers don't cover all our childcare costs anyway, ours pay a little over 3 weeks care every 2 months

hopelesshousewife Thu 21-Aug-08 00:38:19

I set up the childcare vouchers for our firm myself as there aren't many of our employees who took it up, and the administrators charged quite a lot for what seemed to be a simple exercise. It's our company so any savings help our bottom line as well as benefiting the employee.

We haven't had anyone want to charge us for using the scheme (yet!), though we used a direct contract suggested by the council where we contracted directly with the childcare provider for such proportion of their fees as were being paid by us through salary sacrifice. Very easy, just a letter of intent and a pro forma filled out by the employee then direct payment each month, no vouchers needed. Don't know if that helps??

amidaiwish Thu 21-Aug-08 07:23:22

that's interesting hopeless...
so you didn't actually get the vouchers, you just went directly to the nursery or whoever and pay them directly, deducting it then from gross salary?

hopelesshousewife Thu 21-Aug-08 11:22:59

Yes, we had a council rep down, and as we didn't have many takers she recommended we directly contract, if you look at the daycare trust website www.daycaretrust.org.uk it has factsheets about directly contracted childcare and salary sacrifice.

Hope its of some help - I found the Inland Revenue particularly unhelpful!

ilkainnorthants Thu 21-Aug-08 14:24:00

I am so glad it's not just me being totally frustrated about this. I will look into the direct contracting of childcare. That might be a solution for me, as I will need the nursery for another 3 years and it would really be worth the effort. I was wondering the whole time who I would actually have to contact to ask any of these awkward questions (like why not all vouchers are accepted everywhere on the same terms). Colleagues suggested my local MP. Any other ideas (although I might persue that one)

hopelesshousewife Thu 21-Aug-08 14:55:47

Our council had a special person who dealt with them - its worth ringing and asking.

ilkainnorthants Thu 21-Aug-08 15:53:44

thank you, I'll do that

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