The Child Care Subsidy has replaced the old Child Care Benefit and Child Care Rebate. This new payment is designed to be simpler, to make child care affordable for more families, and to provide more help to low and middle-income families.

Combined family income

Your family’s combined income will calculate the CCS percentage you’re entitled to.
Remember, you will need to contact Centrelink when your combined income increases or decreases.

Family income CCS %
$66,958 85%
$66,958 – $171, 958 Subsidy reduces 1% for every $3,000 over $66,958
$171,958 – $251,248 50%
$251,248 – $341,248 Subsidy reduces 1% for every $3,000 over $251,248
$341,248 – $351,248 20%
$351,248+ Nil

These tax brackets will be adjusted as per CPI every financial year.

Level of activity

CCS is linked to how much a family contributes to the Australian economy through activity. This activity level is calculated from the parent with the lowest number of hours of activity.

Hours of activity (per fortnight) Maximum number of hours of subsidy (per fortnight)
8 hours to 16 hours 36 hours
16 hours to 48 hours 72 hours
More than 48 hours 100 hours

What counts as activity?

Under the Child Care Subsidy system if you are doing suitable activity and the amount of activity will then determine how many hours of Childcare Subsidy you are eligible for.
Activity counts as:

  • Paid work (including unpaid lunch breaks)
  • Commute time from childcare centre to work (excludes time travelling from home to childcare centre and vice versa)
  • Authorised leave (eg maternity leave, long service leave, annual leave etc)
  • Unpaid leave of up to 6 months
  • Unpaid work in a family business
  • Setting up a new business
  • Study
  • Training and study (includes semester breaks)
  • Work experience/internships (whether paid or not)
  • Volunteering
  • Looking for work (eg internet research, contacting employers, preparing resumes/letters of application, preparing for and attending job interviews, travel time for interviews)

Concerned you won’t have enough activity?

There may be some families that lose the level of childcare funding support they have become used to as a result of the activity test. However, please note:

  • Activity is based on the family’s estimate over a thirteen week period
  • For casual/contract/itinerant workers whose hours may vary from week to week, you should pick the week with the highest level of activity in the thirteen week period and use that as your level of activity
  • You can go onto myGov and change your activity level at any time
  • While you do not have to verify your activity, the Government has said that it will look to audit about 10% of families each year to seek some form of verification that the activity is valid
  • Families earning less than $64,710 are exempt from activity tests for up to 24 hours care per fortnight

The new caps

Depending on your household income the following caps apply to the amount of fee subsidy you are eligible for each financial year:

  • Families earning less than $186,958 = no cap
  • Families earning $186,958 to $351,248 = $10,190 cap
  • Families earning over $351,248 are not eligible for CCS