Check your eligibility

You must meet eligibility criteria to administer Child Care Subsidy (CCS) at your service. This page outlines who the Australian Government will approve to administer CCS.

On this page:

Who is eligible?

We’ll only approve providers that:

  • meet the provider eligibility rules
  • will operate at least one service that meets the service eligibility rules.

These rules come from Family Assistance Law.

What are the provider eligibility rules?

You must be approved to operate in your state or territory

You must hold a National Law approval or licence to operate in the state or territory in which each of your services will operate.

You must provide evidence of these approvals in your application. We have more information about evidence on the next page.

You must be a specified legal entity

Approval is granted to a legal entity, not an individual. To be approved, you must be one of the following:

  • sole trader
  • partnership
  • private or public company
  • registered co-operative
  • Australian Government body
  • state/territory government body
  • local council
  • Indigenous corporation
  • incorporated or unincorporated body or association.

You must confirm your legal entity status in your application. You’ll also need to provide evidence about the identity of your legal entity. We have more information about evidence on the next page.

Can trusts be approved?

We cannot approve trusts, as a trust is not a legal entity.

However, we can approve a trustee on behalf of a trust. The applicant must be the legal entity that is acting as the trustee.

For example, Excellent Company Pty Ltd as trustee for the Very Good Trust, it is the company Excellent Company Pty Ltd that can apply.

What about ultimate holding companies?

An ultimate holding company is a company that owns subsidiary companies.

The ultimate holding company oversees the subsidiaries and holds all assets. Subsidiary companies run the day-to-day operations.

The entity that applies for CCS approval is the subsidiary company that operates the child care service.

In the CCS application, you must identify the ultimate holding company.

As we assess your application, we may seek more information about the ultimate holding company.

Business.gov.au has more information about entity types and trusts. If you are unsure of your entity type or trustee status, please seek independent business advice before applying.

You must have an ABN

You must have a valid Australian Business Number (ABN).

Approved providers are responsible for passing on significant amounts of public funds. It’s important that we can identify your organisation.

You’ll use your ABN to create an organisation record in PRODA. PRODA is an online authentication system used by government agencies to verify your identity. We have more information about getting started in PRODA on the next page.

Apply for an ABN on the Australian Business Register website.

Persons with management or control must be fit and proper

Persons with management or control (PMCs) must be ‘fit and proper’.

See who at your service is considered a PMC and how we determine if they are fit and proper.

You must show evidence that PMCs have background checks. We have more information about evidence on the next page.

Large providers must be financially viable

If you plan to operate 25 or more Centre Based Day Care services, you must show us that you will be financially viable.

You must provide evidence to help us make this assessment. We have more information about evidence on the next page.

What are the service eligibility rules?

You must provide an approved type of care

There are 4 types of approved care:

  • Centre Based Day Care
  • Outside School Hours Care
  • Family Day Care
  • In Home Care.

Learn more about the approved care types.

National Law does not differentiate between Centre Based Day Care and Outside School Hours Care. While you may provide a mix of both care types at your service, you must identify the type of care that you will primarily provide to be granted CCS approval. This is the care type you will be approved to provide.

If you’re unsure what care type your service will provide, please contact CCSassessments@education.gov.au.

The following types of care are not eligible for CCS approval:

  • informal care provided through personal arrangements, like babysitting
  • a service primarily providing instruction in an activity, like sport or music lessons
  • a service primarily providing disability or early intervention programs
  • a service where a parent primarily provides care or is readily available and retains responsibility for their child like a play group
  • a service primarily providing short-term irregular care at a location where the parent is readily available like care provided by a gym
  • a service primarily providing early education to children in the year that is 2 years before grade 1 of school like a preschool or kindergarten.

CCS is for services that primarily provide child care. While you may provide a mix of programs or activities at your service, you must primarily provide one of the 4 approved care types to be eligible for CCS approval.

States and territory governments are responsible for the delivery of preschool. The Commonwealth provides funding for preschool through the Preschool Reform Funding Agreement.

Persons responsible for day-to-day operations must be fit and proper

Persons responsible for the day-to-day operation of a service (persons responsible at the service) must also be fit and proper.

See who is considered a person responsible at the service and how we determine if they are fit and proper.

You must also show evidence that persons responsible at the service have background checks. We have more information about evidence on the next page.

You must meet the operating requirements for your care type

Centre Based Day Care services must:

  • be approved as a centre-based service under the National Law, unless out of scope
  • hold any other relevant approvals required by the state or territory
  • operate for at least 48 weeks per year (this is known as the minimum operating period)
  • not primarily provide care to school children.

Outside School Hours Care services must:

  • be approved as a centre-based service under the National Law, unless out of scope
  • hold any other relevant approvals required by the state or territory
  • operate for at least 7 weeks per year
  • primarily provide care outside normal school hours to school children.

Family Day Care services must:

  • be approved as a Family Day Care service under the National Law, unless out of scope
  • hold any other relevant approvals required by the state or territory
  • operate for at least 48 weeks per year.

In Home Care services must:

  • hold any relevant approvals required by the applicable state or territory laws and regulations (In Home Care services are out of scope of the National Law)
  • meet quality standards as outlined in the Minister’s Rules
  • operate for at least 48 weeks per year
  • be allocated places by a Support Agency (this is known as the allocation rule).

Learn more about In Home Care.

Minimum operating periods

The minimum operating period sets out the minimum number of weeks you must operate each calendar year. There is no minimum requirement for hours per day or days per week.

We may specify a different minimum operating period in special circumstances. When deciding if special circumstances apply, we’ll consider:

  • If your service is one of the following:
    • the only provider of care, or your care type, in an area
    • located in an outer, regional, remote or very remote area
    • catering to families or communities who cannot reasonably attend another service
    • providing care to disadvantaged communities and families
    • experiencing other unique or very unusual factors.
  • Whether you can demonstrate one of the following:
    • demand in the community does not genuinely warrant your service operating for the minimum period
    • the community does not have facilities available for you to meet the minimum operating period
    • you will be able to operate for the minimum operating period soon.
  • Other factors such as your viability under the proposed number of operating weeks.

If you think the above applies to your service, please contact CCSassessments@education.gov.au. We’ll provide you with an application form. We’ll also let you know what information to provide.

You must satisfy any other conditions deemed relevant

When determining if you meet the service eligibility rules, we’ll also look at:

  • any conditions already imposed on your provider
  • any non-compliance with the law by your provider
  • your provider’s record of administering public funds
  • the ability for staff at your service to use the relevant IT systems
  • any acts of fraud or dishonesty by Family Day Care or In Home Care educators
  • what arrangements your provider has in place to ensure Family Day Care and In Home Care educators comply with the law
  • any other matter we deem relevant.

 

Next step

Gather the information and evidence you’ll need to apply