Child Care Subsidy

The Child Care Subsidy (CCS) is the main way the Australian Government helps families with child care fees. CCS is generally paid to providers who pass it on to families as a fee reduction. Providers must be approved by the department to receive CCS on behalf of families.

On this page:

In the 2024–25 Budget the Australian Government committed to new measures that build strong and sustainable foundations for future reform of early childhood education and care. 

Read our announcement to find out more.

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.

Learn about family eligibility and entitlement

Become an approved provider

You must be approved to operate a service and administer CCS. You need approval from:

  • your state or territory government, and
  • the Australian Government.

Apply to become an approved provider

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.

Learn about the approved care types

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.

Learn about how to access the CCSS

Enrolling children

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.

Learn about enrolling children

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.

Learn about reporting sessions of care

Managing absences

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.

Learn about managing absences

Payments and 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. Families must pay the gap fee electronically. Providers must report fee information to the government.

Learn about payments and fees

Learn more about electronic payment of gap fees

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.

Learn about overpayments and debt

Balancing payments

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.

Learn about CCS balancing