30 Hours Free Childcare and Tax-Free Childcare
Since 1 September 2017 the free early education childcare entitlement has been extended to up to 30 hours a week for working parents of 3 and 4-year-olds. This is an extension of the current universal free early education entitlement of up to 15 hours a week for all 3 and 4-year-olds.
You may be able to get up to 30 hours free childcare (1,140 hours per year, which you can choose how you take) if your child is 3 to 4 years old.
Your eligibility depends on:
- if you are working
- how much you earn
- your child’s circumstances
- your nationality
You can get 30 hours free childcare at the same time as claiming Universal Credit, tax credits, childcare vouchers or Tax-Free Childcare. Parents can get up to £2,000 per child, per year, towards their childcare costs or up to £4,000 for a child with a disability.
If you get Tax-Free Childcare, the government will pay £2 for every £8 you pay your childcare provider. This is paid via an online childcare account that you set up for your child. You can get Tax-Free Childcare at the same time as 30 hours free childcare if you’re eligible for both.
For more information on how to apply for 30 hours free childcare and Tax-Free Childcare, please visit HMRC's Childcare Choices website (external link).
Important: once registered for 30 hours and or Tax-Free Childcare, you will need to reconfirm your eligibility via your HMRC account every three months.
- Watch the Department for Education's video How to apply for 30 hours childcare and Tax-Free Childcare on YouTube (external link)
- Watch parents talk about the difference 30 hours free childcare and Tax-Free Childcare has made to them and their child: 30 hours - Promo on YouTube (external link)
Would I qualify?
Use the Childcare Calculator to check what help you could get with childcare costs (external link).
View the 30 Hours Eligibility - February 2017 (PDF, 156KB) for full details.
For more information about 30 hours free childcare, please view the Frequently Asked Questions (PDF, 166KB) published by the Department for Education.
When can my child take up their 30 hours?
If your child is eligible for 30 hours free childcare they can start the next available term after their third birthday (see the table below):
|If your child turns three between:||Your child can get 30 hours from:|
|1 April to 31 August||1 September (autumn term)||15 August|
|1 September to 31 December||1 January (spring term)||15 December|
|1 January to 31 March||1 April (summer term)||15 March|
I already have a 30 hours free childcare and Tax-Free childcare account. Will I need to access it again?
Yes, you will need to sign in to your account to check for messages from HMRC. You will also need to reconfirm your eligibility status every three months so you can update your childcare provider and continue receiving your free childcare.
Which providers are offering 30 hours?
- View or download the List of free early education providers in Haringey for 3-4 year olds (PDF, 85KB).
Important: Please contact your preferred provider as soon as possible to confirm and secure your place.
Which providers are offering Tax-Free Childcare?
Your childcare provider must be signed up to the scheme before you can pay them and benefit from Tax-Free Childcare. Check direct with your provider to see if they’re signed up.
When you apply for 30 hours, you will receive your 11 digit eligibility code which you must take to your childcare provider to be validated before your child can take up a place on the first day of term.Delay in submitting your eligibility code will mean that you cannot claim for your free 30 hours in the allocated term (see table above).
To receive Tax-Free Childcare, your child must be 11 or under and usually live with you. They stop being eligible on 1 September after their 11th birthday.
Adopted children are eligible, but foster children are not.
If your child is disabled you may get up to £4,000 a year until they’re 17. They’re eligible for this if they:
- get Disability Living Allowance, Personal Independence Payment or Armed Forces Independence Payment
- are certified as blind or severely sight-impaired
Note: your childcare provider must be signed up to the scheme before you can pay them and benefit from Tax-Free Childcare. Check with your provider to see if they’re signed up.
For more information on how to apply for 30 hours free childcare and Tax-Free Childcare please visit HMRC's Childcare Choices website (external link).
You will need to reconfirm your eligibility details via your HMRC account for (Tax-Free Childcare) or your eligibility code for (30 hours free childcare) every three months in order to continue to receive your entitlements. You will receive reminder notifications from HMRC just before renewal dates but it is important that you regularly check your HMRC account for details.
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