The Child Care Subsidy (CCS) is the main way the Australian Government helps families with child care fees. Providers must be approved by the department to receive CCS on behalf of families.
On this page:
Family eligibility and entitlement
Families must meet eligibility criteria to get CCS.
The amount of CCS a family can get depends on their circumstances.
Services Australia looks at:
- a family’s income
- how many children a family has in care
- the age of the children in care
- a family’s activity level
- the type of care a family uses.
Become an approved provider
You must be approved to operate a service and administer CCS. You need approval from:
- Your state or territory government. This deems you suitable to ensure the health, safety, wellbeing and educational outcomes of children. This is known as National Law approval or state regulatory approval.
- The Australian Government. This deems you suitable under Family Assistance Law to administer CCS.
Approved care types
There are 4 care types that can administer CCS:
- Centre Based Day Care
- Outside School Hours Care
- Family Day Care
- In Home Care.
Access the Child Care Subsidy System
The Child Care Subsidy System (CCSS) is the online system we use to administer CCS payments. It holds records like enrolments and session reports. This information is used to calculate payments for families.
It is also where you perform a range of mandatory obligations and tasks.
All children who attend care must be enrolled or have an arrangement for care. Children who get CCS must have the right enrolment in place for payments to be made.
Reporting sessions of care
Once a child is enrolled, you must report sessions of care to the government. Services Australia uses this information to calculate and process CCS payments. You must provide accurate session reports on time – it’s the law.
Families can get CCS when their child can’t attend care up to 42 days each year. They may get extra absences in certain circumstances.
There are important rules you must follow when charging and reporting fees.
CCS is generally paid to providers who pass it on to families as a fee reduction. Families must make a co-contribution by paying the gap fee. You must report your fee information to the government.
Understanding overpayments and debts
You may sometimes receive more CCS than you're entitled to. We also issue debt notices in certain circumstances. There are simple ways to avoid overpayments and debts.
Services Australia balances CCS payments after each financial year to ensure families are paid the right amount. The balancing process is a matter between families and Services Australia.