Eligibility for Child Care Subsidy

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For Child Care Subsidy to be paid for a session of care provided for a child, that child and their parents or carers (the individual) must meet certain eligibility requirements.

Age requirements

Children must:

  • be aged 13 years or under, and
  • not attend high school (secondary school).

Providers can provide care for children who do not meet these conditions, but they should be aware that Child Care Subsidy will not be payable unless there are specified circumstances.

For example, some older children with disability and children attending secondary school at a young age may be eligible on a case-by-case basis if they have a legitimate need to access subsidised care and cannot be left unsupervised:

  • children aged 13 and under who are attending secondary school, including children with disability
  • children with disability aged 14 or 15 years
  • children with disability aged 16, 17 or 18 years in exceptional circumstances.

Services Australia will consider the parent's eligibility in respect of these children based on information and evidence provided by the parent at claim or when updating their circumstances.

Immunisation requirements

To be eligible for the Child Care Subsidy a child must also meet immunisation requirements.

The Australian Government considers that immunisation is an important health measure for children and their families, as it is the safest and most effective way of providing protection against harmful and often deadly diseases. To meet the Child Care Subsidy immunisation requirements, children must be immunised according to the standard vaccination schedule, be on an eligible catch-up vaccination schedule or have an approved exemption from being immunised (see the Department of Human Services website at www.humanservices.gov.au/individuals/enablers/what-are-immunisation-requirements/35396).

There is a short immunisation grace period which provides some flexibility for families to meet the vaccination requirements where they may have missed or forgotten a scheduled vaccination.

Residency requirements for parents

To receive Child Care Subsidy, the claimant or their partner must be an Australian resident as defined under the Social Security Act 1991 or be an eligible non-resident.

Information for families

For more information about the immunisation and residency requirements for Child Care Subsidy, a family should contact Services Australia (servicesaustralia.gov.au).

Cessation of CCS eligibility

From 7 March 2022, Services Australia may cease CCS eligibility at any time if they consider an individual does not intend that the child be enrolled in or attend sessions of care at a child care service.

From 11 July 2022, children who haven’t attended a session of care in 26 consecutive weeks will no longer be eligible for Child Care Subsidy. If the child starts to attend care again, the family can lodge a new claim for Child Care Subsidy.

For families with multiple children aged 5 or under in care, this may affect entitlement to the higher CCS for second and younger children.