All parents want to ensure that their children receive the very best early education and care when they’re not around, which is where day-care comes in. Some daycare centre fees may pose as a barrier of entry for some families, the Australian Government supports many working families with a Child Care Subsidy (CCS). Eligible families can utilise this subsidy for all children below 13 years of age. Read on to find out how to apply for a childcare subsidy.

Check your eligibility

One of the first tasks you should perform before applying to the Child Care Subsidy (CSS) is to check your eligibility on the Services NSW website.

You will be asked to confirm your family’s fortnightly activity hours as your entitlement will be based on this. Your combined household income and the intended amount of childcare and early education you are planning for your child are other factors that gauge your eligibility for the subsidy.

Sign In & Apply

Next, log in to your MyGov account and go to Centrelink. From the menu option, click on ‘Payments & Claims.’ The next step is to ‘Make a Claim.’ Now, select the ‘Families’ option and click ‘Get Started.’ Answer all the required questions and submit the form.

If you have any questions about the application process, you can reach the CCS Helpline on 136 150 (Monday to Friday 8 am to 8 pm).

Confirm CWA

Once you have enrolled your child with a confirmed starting date, you will need to advise your ECE service of your Customer Registration Number (CRN) and Date of Birth (DOB) alongside your child’s CRN and DOB.

The last step is to confirm the Complying Written Agreement (CWA) on the MyGov portal. It is necessary once your child has enrolled in Montessori childcare or pre-school. The process may between 24-48 hours for Centrelink to update your eligibility on the services enrolment management system. This is an essential step to ensure that you start getting the CSS from day one.

When you are thinking of how to apply for a childcare subsidy, make sure to submit your claim before your child starts going to school. This will allow you to receive CCS benefits from the get-go, and even if you have missed out on claiming CSS, it can be backdated up to 28 calendar days.