This information was updated on 6 September 2021.
On Wednesday 1 September, we will send offers of business continuity payments to providers affected by COVID-19 lockdowns.
Providers must accept this offer by 11.59pm Friday 3 September for payments to be made in the week starting Monday 6 September.
What are business continuity payments?
Child care services in Commonwealth-declared COVID-19 Hotspots can get fortnightly business continuity payments if:
- the Commonwealth hotspot runs for more than 7 days and the state or territory government has limited who can access child care, or
- the Commonwealth hotspot extends beyond 28 days.
Who is eligible?
Currently, services in Victoria, New South Wales and Australian Capital Territory are eligible for business continuity payments.
What are the conditions?
Providers with multiple services will be required to confirm that each of the services to receive payments meets all conditions.
How will the offers be made?
On Wednesday 1 September, eligible providers will receive an email from this address: ECECViabilitySupportPackage@dese.gov.au.
The email will be sent to the provider-level email address registered in the Child Care Subsidy System.
It will contain a DocuSign document that sets out instructions for opting in to receive payments.
Please read the document thoroughly.
Providers must opt-in for each service they run. They will also be asked for other information.
Providers must sign and return the form by Friday 3 September. You do that by pressing “submit” at the end of the form.
If you miss the 3 September cut-off date, the next fortnightly payment will be made in the week starting 20 September 2021.
Please note, no retrospective payments will be made for late submission.
Timely notification of your initial acceptance or decline of the offer, and any subsequent changes to your circumstances is critical.
Extra step for large providers
Large providers will be asked to fill-out an additional spreadsheet that captures which of their services they want to opt-in for payments, and confirm each service meets all conditions.
These providers will need to return this spreadsheet to the following address: ECECViabilitySupportPackage@dese.gov.au.
How and when will payments be made?
The first payment will be made in the week starting 6 September for providers who accept the offer by 3 September. The first payment will be backdated to cover the 23 August to 5 September fortnight.
Payments will continue fortnightly until:
- you choose to opt out due to a change in circumstances, such that your services no longer meet payment conditions
- the Commonwealth COVID-19 Hotspot declaration ends, or
- the Commonwealth ceases payments.
Important: update your information
To ensure you receive an offer for a business continuity payment, please update your contact details, particularly email addresses, in the Child Care Subsidy System.
Do this via the Provider Entry Point or your third-party software.
We will provide updates on payments and anything else you need to know.
If you have questions email: ECECViabilitySupportPackage@dese.gov.au
Other Australian Government support
As well as these payments, we are providing support to COVID-19 affected services via gap fee waiving, additional allowable absences, and other measures.