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CCS News

Child Care Subsidy activity test from 13 July 2020

The activity test requirements will be eased from 13 July 2020 to help families impacted by COVID-19.

From 13 July 2020 to 4 October 2020, individuals who can no longer engage in the same number of hours of work, training, study or other activity recognised by the CCS activity test immediately prior to the COVID-19 crisis, can advise Services Australia they meet the requirements to access 100 hours of subsidised child care, per child, per fortnight for up to 12 weeks.

This can be done through their Centrelink online account through myGov or the Express Plus Centrelink mobile app. For more information, visit dese.gov.au/covid-19/childcare.

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CCS News

Changes to absences under the Child Care Subsidy

What is an absence day?
Under the Child Care Subsidy, families are allowed 42 absence days per child, per financial year. These 42 allowable absences can be taken for any reason, including public holidays and when children are sick, without the need for families to provide documentation.

Changes to absences
From 13 July 2020, families can receive CCS for absences up to seven days before a child’s first, and after a child’s last, physical attendance at a service, where a session of care would have usually been provided, for any of the following reasons:

  • any of the additional absence reasons
  • the child, the individual who cares for the child, the individual’s partner or another person with whom the child lives is ill (no medical certificate required if the child has not used 42 absence days)
  • the service has changed ownership
  • the usual service is closed and the child is attending a different service under the same provider
  • a family tragedy (a major event including the death of an immediate family member) has occurred, or
  • the enrolment ceased incorrectly.

This amendment was made in response to feedback from the sector and has been timed to coincide with the start of the 2020-21 CCS year.

Families can continue to claim additional absences for COVID-19 related reasons without the need for medical evidence until 31 December 2020.

For more information check out the updated absences fact sheet and FAQs from Department of Education, Skills and Employment.

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CCS Rates

Child Care Subsidy rates from 13 July 2020

The Department of Education, Skills and Employment released the fact sheet which outlines adjustments to Child Care Subsidy rates that take effect on 13 July 2020.

CCS Income Test
The percentage of Child Care Subsidy a family is entitled to is based on combined annual income. Child Care Subsidy income thresholds are adjusted annually in accordance with Consumer Price Index (CPI). The table below shows the income thresholds that apply from 13 July 2020. CCS-Income-Test-FY21

CS Annual Cap
There is no annual cap for most families receiving Child Care Subsidy. The income threshold at which an annual cap does apply, and the value of the cap, are adjusted annually in accordance with CPI. The table below shows how the annual cap applies from 13 July 2020.CCS-Annual-Cap-FY21

CCS Hourly Rate Caps
The hourly rate caps are the maximum hourly rate used to calculate families’ Child Care Subsidy for each service type. The hourly rate caps are adjusted annually in accordance with CPI. The table below shows the hourly rate caps that apply from 13 July 2020.CCS-Hourly-Rate-Caps-FY21

Click here to download the Child Care Subsidy rates from 13 July 2020.

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CCS News

Child Care Subsidy is starting again soon – are your families ready?

Child Care Subsidy (CCS) is starting again on 13 July 2020.

If you were receiving CCS before 6 April 2020, it will automatically start again if you’ve stayed eligible and your enrolment is current and confirmed.

Follow these five steps to make sure you’ve stayed eligible and receive the right amount of CCS:

  • Give Centrelink your 2020–21 family income estimate to receive the correct CCS percentage and avoid an overpayment.
  • Check your activity hours to receive the correct amount of hours of CCS per fortnight*.
  • Make sure your child meets immunisation requirements.
  • Check your child’s enrolment details are current with your child care service and re-enrol if you need to.
  • Confirm your income for 2018–19 if you haven’t already by 30 June 2020.

*From 13 July 2020, the Australian Government is easing the activity test for CCS. This means you may be able to apply for extra activity hours if COVID-19 has affected you. There will be more information about how to do this in July.

If you’re new to child care, you should claim CCS as soon as possible. From 13 July 2020, you’ll pay full fees unless you’re getting CCS.

For more information, visit Services Australia.

The Department of Education, Skills and Employment has created an information sheet for families about the transition arrangements for the end of the Early Childhood Education and Care Relief Package and the return to CCS.