Help with childcare costs

More help with childcare costs

You may also be eligible for help from government childcare schemes and your employers.

Healthy food vouchers

With Healthy Start you may be able to get free vouchers every week to spend on milk, fresh and frozen fruit and vegetables, and infant formula milk. You can also get free vitamins for yourself and your child.

If you are pregnant or have children under the age of four and are recieivng certain benefits benefits, you could be eligible.

Free School Meals

You children may be able to get Free School Meals.

Child Tax Credit

Child Tax Credit is an income-related allowance for parents and carers of children or young people who are still in full-time education.

Help for working families

Tax-Free Childcare

Working parents can get up to £2,000 government support per child per year towards their childcare costs.Further information about the scheme can be found in the Parents Guide to Tax-Free Childcare

GOV.UK also has more information on Tax-Free Childcare, including how to apply.

Working Tax Credit

You may be able to get help pay for childcare whilst you’re working. This is the childcare element of Working Tax Credit.

GOV.UK has more information on Working Tax Credit.

Universal Credit and childcare

You may be able to claim up to 85% of your childcare costs if you're eligible for Universal Credit.

GOV.UK has more information on Universal Credit and childcare.

Employer supported childcare

Some employers provide support with finding and paying for childcare. Talk to your employer about what they offer. See information from HM Revenue and Customs on getting help from your employer.

GOV.UK has more information on what you may be entitled to.

Help for parents in higher education

If you are a full-time student with children you may qualify for extra financial help on top of your standard student finance package.

GOV.UK has more information on student finance.

Help for grandparents and other family members

If you are a grandparent, or other family member, who has given up work to care for a child under 12, you may be entitled to receive Specified Adult Childcare National Insurance credits.

These credits help fill in any gaps in your National Insurance record which means that you’ll still get the full State Pension and other benefits.

How to apply

You can apply for Specified Adult Childcare credits if:

  • you are a grandparent, or other family member caring for a child under 12
  • you were over 16, and under State Pension age when you cared for the child
  • you are a UK resident
  • the child’s parent is entitled to Child Benefit and has a qualifying year for National Insurance
  • the child’s parent agrees to your application by countersigning the form

GOV.UK has more about eligibility and how to apply for Specified Adult Childcare credits.

Help with the cost of living

We know people are worried about rising costs and may be struggling. We've produced a summary of our services which may be able to help you during this difficult time.

Please visit our dedicated cost of living page for information to help you to find the right support.

Print this page