Paying for childcare

The Family and Childcare Trust have information on Childcare Options, for all parents, including working parents, parents who are studying and families with disabilities.

Ways of paying for childcare:

Tax-Free Childcare and Childcare Vouchers

  • Tax-Free Childcare is a way of helping parents to pay for childcare. You will have an online account, which you pay into to pay approved providers. You can apply fo Tax-Free Childcare and Childcare Vouchers on the Childcare Choices website.
  • Childcare Vouchers are a means of paying for childcare – they are one of the ways in which an employer can help employees with childcare costs and are sometimes known as Employer Supported Childcare. Childcare Vouchers have now been phased out to new applicants. If you have already signed up and have started to receive vouchers you can continue to use them as long as you stay with the same employer and they continue to operate the scheme provided that you do not take an unpaid career break of longer than one year.
  • If you or your partner are employed by Cheshire East Council, more information about the Childcare Voucher scheme for employees can be find on the intranet under HR and Staff Benefits.
  • A high/additional rate tax payer Higher rate taxpayers are only be eligible to receive £28 per week in childcare vouchers. Basic rate taxpayers will still be eligible to receive the maximum allowance of £55 per week. 

Tax Credit and Universal Credit for Childcare

  • Tax Credit and Universal Credit are designed to top up wages for those on low income and help with childcare costs. There are 2 websites that can help you estimate the Tax Credits that your household might be entitled to: HMRC Do I Qualify for tax credits? and the Daycare Trust.
  • The better off calculator can help you decide which is the best option for you.

Free Early Education Entitlement (previously known as the Nursery Education Grant)

More information on childcare for children with special educational needs and disabilities is available on the Family and Childcare Trust website.

Contact us

Family Information Service
Cheshire East Council

0300 123 5033

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