Jobs, Education and Training Child Care Fee Assistance

An extra payment that helps with childcare costs if you get an eligible income support payment from us.

Jobs, Education and Training Child Care Fee Assistance is commonly known as JET Child Care Fee Assistance.

There will be changes to child care assistance from 2 July 2018. Read more about the New child care package on the Department of Education and Training website.

Eligibility & payment rates

Who can get it

You may be able to receive JET Child Care Fee Assistance if you receive:

You must also:

You may be eligible if:

  • we suspend any of the above payments, or
  • you’re eligible for a payment, but don’t receive anything because you earn too much each fortnight

Other payments

You could also receive Child Care Rebate.

This rebate covers 50% of your out of pocket child care costs up to the annual limit of $7,613 per child.

Payment Rate

This payment helps meet the cost of approved child care by paying part of the gap fee.

The gap fee is the difference between child care costs and your Child Care Benefit. We pay part of the gap fee and you must pay the rest.

How much gap fee you pay depends on your situation. You need to pay:

  • $0.10 an hour for each child if you’re a teenage parent completing high school or equivalent study - this applies until the end of the calendar year that you turn 20 years of age
  • $1 an hour for each child for all other eligible parents

We pay up to $8.40 an hour for each child. This may increase each financial year in line with the Consumer Price Index.

If your child attends child care for more hours than you were eligible for, you won’t receive any extra JET. This means you may need to pay more to your child care service.

You may also be able to receive Child Care Rebate.

How many hours you can get

The hours you can receive depend on:

  • how much child care you use
  • how much your child care service charges, and
  • your circumstances

The number of hours you’re eligible for is based on the allocation of 12 hours per day.

Your circumstances

You can claim certain hours of child care each week for each child. The number of days you can claim depends on your circumstances.

If you're only doing study or training activity, you will receive up to 36 hours a week per child.

If you're a teenage parent doing secondary education, you may be able to receive more than 24 hours until the end of the calendar year you turn 20 years of age.

The length of time you can receive JET Child Care Assistance for depends on your circumstances.

If you're you can receive JET Child Care Fee Assistance for
searching for a job up to 20 days
undertaking paid or unpaid work up to 26 weeks

studying or training in:

  • Senior Secondary Certificate of Education courses, such as year 12 or similar
  • enabling courses, sometimes called bridging or foundation courses, or
  • certificate 2 to graduate diploma level qualifications
up to 104 weeks for full time study
participating in a labour market program

up to 26 weeks for Work for the Dole or the Green Army programme

up to 104 weeks full time for the Skills for Education and Employment program

participating in a government funded rehabilitation program

up to 26 weeks

doing other activities to engage in sustainable paid work

up to 26 weeks

Claiming more hours

To receive more hours, you and your partner must meet a Work, Training, Study test.

This means:

  • you need to be doing at least 15 hours a week, or 30 hours a fortnight, on one of the above activities, and
  • your JET Child Care Fee Assistance hours can’t be more than Child Care Benefit hours in the same week

You may be able to receive more than 36 hours per week if you're doing:

  • approved activities other than study, or
  • a combination of JET approved activities and haven’t reached the JET Child Care Fee Assistance funding limits

Study and training restrictions

Study restrictions apply if you:

  • already hold a qualification, or
  • have reached your JET Child Care Fee Assistance funding limit at your current study level

You can’t receive JET Child Care Fee Assistance studying at the same level unless it leads to occupations in high demand.

Read Skills Shortage List for Australia on the Department of Employment website.

You must provide proof of your enrolment in the course.

Absences

A child may be absent from child care 42 times in any financial year before this affects your JET Child Care Fee Assistance.

Consider this limit for times you don’t need care, such as semester breaks from study.

You can claim extra absences for certain reasons. Talk to your child care service if you need more absent days.

Read more about absent days and Child Care Benefit.

Changes to child care payments

Child care payments will change from 2 July 2018. We will let you know when you need to do something.

Read more about changes to child care payments

Claiming

Check if you’re eligible before you start your claim.

Then:

  • find out what you need before you start
  • fill in your claim form
  • submit the form and other documents we ask for
  • update your Job Plan, including your JET Child Care Fee Assistance activity
  • wait for us to assess your claim and tell you the result

Next

Managing your payment

Changes to your circumstances

You need to report any changes to your circumstances.

You need to tell us if you:

  • stop doing your approved activity
  • change address
  • change relationship status
  • stop using child care
  • need to claim for longer
  • travel overseas or your child goes overseas
  • leave Australia or the government tells you that you can’t stay in Australia
  • or your partner aren’t primary carers for your child

You also need to tell us if your child:

  • starts going to school
  • attends a new child care service
  • leaves a child care service
  • changes child care times
  • stops living with you
  • is no longer your dependant
  • passes away
  • leaves Australia

How and when to tell us

The easiest way to tell us about changes is through our self service options.

Make sure you:

  • tell us about the change within 14 days
  • update your details in myGov

It’s never too late to report a change.

If you don’t tell us

If you don't tell us about changes, we may pay you too much. If this happens you'll have to pay the money back. There may also be a recovery fee. That’s why it’s best to report any changes as soon as they happen.

If you don’t tell us when your circumstances change, you could be committing fraud.

Read how to avoid committing fraud.

Manage your child care hours

You can see your approved JET Child Care Fee Assistance hours on your Centrelink online account through myGov.

Select:

  • view Child Care Details and Payments
  • view JET Child Care Assistance to see your assessment, or
  • view Child Care Attendance to see your child care fees and payments

You can work out your hourly payment rate by:

  • finding the amount of JET Child Care Fee Assistance you receive, and
  • dividing this by the number of hours you’re approved for

Resources

More about child care

Read more about child care on the Department of Education and Training website.

Payment and Service Finder

Find, estimate and compare payments and services you may be eligible for. You can also work out what a change in circumstance might mean for the payments and services you currently receive from us.

Start using Payment and Service Finder

Manage your money

 

We’ve got advice and tools to help you with budgeting, borrowing and credit, and managing debt.

Read about how to manage your money.

Page last updated: 27 August 2017