Parents urged to act now for childcare savings

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WORKING parents are being urged not to miss out on the benefits of childcare vouchers.

Eligible working parents in Hartlepool with children aged up to 16 are being urged to sign up to the national Childcare Voucher scheme before the end of this tax year to get tax and National Insurance (NI) savings on the vouchers of up to £1,196.

With the deadline fast approaching, parents need to act swiftly as higher rate taxpayers’ specifications change on April 6 and tax and NI savings could drop by up to £570 or more a year.

For anyone already in a Childcare Voucher scheme, tax savings will continue.

Childcare vouchers must be bought through participating employers and can be used to pay for all types of registered childcare, including day nurseries, nannies, au pairs, crèches, childminders, out-of-school clubs, holiday schemes, activity clubs and qualifying childcare offered by schools.

The Families Information Service Hartlepool (FISH) can provide further information about Childcare Vouchers, help with childcare costs, finding registered childcare and a range of other advice and support which is available to families.

Sarah Tudor, FISH Manager, said: “If you are a working parent who pays for childcare, there has never been a better time to find out about the tax and Nl benefits of the Childcare Voucher scheme.

“You could still benefit from the savings even if you already receive help with your childcare costs through the Child Tax Credit system.

“If you’re a higher rate taxpayer who is eligible to buy Childcare Vouchers but hasn’t yet done so, you need to act fast and sign up before April 6.

“Otherwise you could miss out on up to half of the tax and NI relief which is presently available.”

FISH can be contacted on (01429) 284824 or call in at the FISH information desk in Hartlepool Central Library in York Road on weekdays between 9.30am-5pm.