Balancing your child care payments

At the start of each financial year, we ask you to estimate your family income so that we can work out how much Child Care Benefit for approved care to pay you.

After the end of the financial year, we balance your payments and check if you've received more or less Child Care Benefit for approved care than you were entitled to.

Once your Child Care Benefit entitlement is determined, any Child Care Rebate entitlement is also balanced.

If you overestimate your annual family income and receive a top up of Child Care Benefit, you may incur a Child Care Rebate overpayment. Your top up of Child Care Benefit will first be used to offset the Child Care Rebate overpayment and any remainder paid to you.

If you underestimate your annual family income and have been overpaid Child Care Benefit, your Child Care Rebate entitlement may increase. Any top up of Child Care Rebate will be offset against your Child Care Benefit debt and you'll have to pay back any Child Care Benefit you've been overpaid.

The following example shows how Child Care Benefit and Child Care Rebate payments will be balanced based on actual family income.

Example Estimate Recalculations based on actual family income  
Per fortnight Entitlements based on an income estimate If the actual income was lower than the estimate If the actual income was higher than the estimate
Child Care fee $1,000 $1,000 $1,000
Less Child Care Benefit entitlement -$300 -$500 -$200
Sub-total $700 $500 $800
Less Child Care Rebate entitlement -$350 -$250 -$400
Final out of pocket costs $350 $250 $400
    This means Child Care Benefit was underpaid by $200 and Child Care Rebate was overpaid by $100. After offsetting, a Child Care Benefit top up of $100 will be paid. This means Child Care Benefit was overpaid by $100 and Child Care Rebate was underpaid by $50. After offsetting, there is a Child Care Benefit debt of $50.

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Page last updated: 5 October 2016

This information was printed Monday 5 December 2016 from humanservices.gov.au/customer/enablers/balancing-your-child-care-payments It may not include all of the relevant information on this topic. Please consider any relevant site notices at humanservices.gov.au/siteinformation when using this material.