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Are you eligible for free childcare

  • March 26, 2024
  • 2 min read
Are you eligible for free childcare

The deadline is approaching for parents in England who hope to apply for 15 hours of free weekly childcare for their two year old child. The government hopes that by extending free childcare to this age group from April 2024, and to all under 5 years old in 2025, it will help get more parents back to work.  

Additional help with the cost of childcare in England is being rolled out in stages. Some free hours are already available. The help you can apply for may depend on the age of your child, whether or not you are working, and if you are already receiving certain benefits.

Working parents can be eligible for 15 hours free childcare a week for two-year-olds from April 2024, and 15 hours free childcare for nine month olds from September, 2024. For three and four year olds, 30 hours of free childcare is already available and will be available for under fives from September, 2025.

To qualify for the new hours, most parents should be earning over £8,670 and less than £100,000 per year.

Those on certain benefits are already eligible for 15 hours free childcare for two-year-olds and 15 hours free childcare for three and four-year-olds.

You may still be eligible, even if you don’t work, for 30 hours of free childcare, either if your partner works or you are receiving certain benefits already.

Parents need to apply by the end of the term when their child is eligible. That means by April, September, or January. The deadline for free hours for two year olds in the spring term is the 31st March.

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