Child Care Subsidy - activity test

The activity test is one of the three factors that will determine a family's level of Child Care Subsidy.

The number of hours of subsidised child care that families will have access to per fortnight will be determined by a three-step activity test.

In two parent families both parents, unless exempt, must meet the activity test. In the case where both parents meet different steps of the activity test, the parent with the lowest entitlement will determine the hours of subsidised care for the child.

Step Hours of activity* Maximum number of hours of subsidy per child*
1 8 hours to 16 hours 36 hours
2 More than 16 hours to 48 hours 72 hours
3 More than 48 hours 100 hours

*Per fortnight

Recognised activities

A broad range of activities will meet the activity test requirements, including:

  • paid work, including leave
  • being self employed
  • doing unpaid work in the family business
  • training courses for the purpose of improving the individual's work skills or employment prospects
  • an approved course of education or study
  • volunteering
  • actively looking for work.
  • paid parental leave, including maternity leave

Recognised activities can be combined to determine the maximum number of hours of subsidy. Time taken to travel between the child care service and the parents/carers place of work, training, study, or other approved activity will also be included.

Activity hours do not need to coincide with child care hours. For example, an individual undertaking work on the weekends will be eligible for child care subsidy during the week.


Low income families on $65,710 or less a year who do not meet the activity test will be able to access 24 hours of subsided care per child per fortnight without having to meet the activity test, as part of the Child Care Safety Net.

Other factors

The other two factors that will determine a family's level of child care subsidy are:


A range of information resources are available to assist families and providers understand the details of the new package.