Are you eligible for tax-free childcare

You can receive up to £500 every 3 months (up to £2,000 a year) for each of your children to help with the costs of childcare. This increases to £1,000 every 3 months if a child is disabled (up to £4,000 a year).

If you receive Tax-Free Childcare, you will set up an online childcare account for your child. For every £8 you pay into this account, the government will pay in £2 to use to pay your provider.

You can receive Tax-Free Childcare at the same time as 15 or 30 hours free childcare if you are eligible for both.

You can use it to pay for approved childcare, for example, childminders, nurseries and nannies and after school clubs and play schemes.

Your childcare provider must be signed up to the scheme before you can pay them and benefit from Tax-Free Childcare. Check with your provider to see if they are signed up.


According to the GOV.UK website your eligibility depends on:

whether you are working (employed, self-employed, or a director);
your income (and your partner’s income if you have one);
your child’s age and circumstances; and
your immigration status.


If you are not currently working you may still be eligible if your partner is working and you receive any of the following:

Incapacity Benefit
Severe Disablement Allowance
Carer’s Allowance or (in Scotland only) Carer Support Payment
Contribution-based Employment and Support Allowance

You can apply if you are starting or re-starting work within the next 31 days.

Your income

Over the next 3 months you and your partner (if you have one) must each expect to earn at least:

£2,379 if you’re aged 21 or over
£1,788 if you’re aged 18 to 20
£1,331 if you’re under 18 or an apprentice

This is the National Minimum Wage or Living Wage for 16 hours a week on average.