The tax-free childcare scheme has now opened... for parents of children under 9 years old.
The scheme is planned to cover children up to the age of 12 years and despite it having taken 5 years to get to this stage since it was announced, HMRC have decided to delay the inclusion of the older children until 14 February 2018.
Parents have to use the official website to register for the childcare scheme at Childcare Choices.
With recent news stories about parents having technical difficulties with the site , presumably HMRC have decided to open the scheme up in sections to try to avoid further issues. We will have to wait and see whether that proves to be the case.
Today, Tax-Free Childcare opens to parents whose youngest child is under 9, or who turns 9 today. The scheme will open to all remaining eligible families with children under 12 on 14 February 2018. This means all eligible parents will be able to apply for Tax-Free Childcare before the end of this financial year. Parents, including the self-employed, can apply online for Tax-Free Childcare by visiting Childcare Choices. Parents can also access the government’s childcare calculator through Childcare Choices, which helps parents to choose which government childcare support is best for them.