As you will have seen in the news, the opportunity for new members to buy Childcare Vouchers is ending imminently, and they will be offered the Government Tax-Free Childcare (TFC) Scheme instead as their only option. Employees can keep getting Childcare Vouchers if they’ve joined the scheme and had their first deduction before October 4th and:
- they stay with the same employer and the employer continues to run the scheme
- they do not take an unpaid career break of longer than a year.
To take advantage of the existing Childcare Voucher scheme employees must start making their selections immediately if they are going to make your payroll cutoff date.
However, is it possible that there will be a reprieve for Childcare Vouchers like there was earlier this year?
As at August 2018, more than 70 businesses and charities, including Barnados and Kettle Foods, representing around 45,000 employees, have backed the campaign run by the Childcare Vouchers Provider Association (CVPA) under the policy of the futureofchildcaresupport.com, to #SaveChildcareVouchers.
The campaign calls for the Government to keep both schemes running alongside each other. Research from the CVPA found that at least 90 per cent of families will be better off using Childcare Vouchers, Tax Credits, or a combination of the two, than they would be under TFC. They believe that if the scheme closes, families will be left with an uninformed choice about the best childcare and support for their needs and also that many low income families will be worse off with the Government’s Tax-Free Childcare than if they carried on using Childcare Vouchers.
Alicia Aldis, Operations Director at You at Work says, “We will all hopefully find out in the coming days or weeks if the campaign has been successful, but in the meantime we urge you to ensure that your employees are aware of the cutoff dates, and perhaps even consider extending your September payroll deadline to ensure as many employees as possible get the opportunity to remain in the existing Childcare Voucher Scheme and save up to £933 per year.”
Please join You at Work in the fight to #SaveChildcareVouchers and sign the business pledge by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org with the name of your business and the number of your employees to find out more.
If a reprieve happens we’d love to support you in implementing a new Childcare Vouchers Scheme. In the meantime, if you’re looking at a fresh approach to employee benefits contact us now to see how we can help.
UPDATE AS AT 12TH SEPTEMBER 18
221 employers collectively representing 124,849 employee beneficiaries have now officially signed the business pledge to put pressure on the government to keep the scheme open. The campaign is asking employers to now write to the Chief Secretary to the Treasury, the Rt Hon Elizabeth Truss MP, urging her to reverse the decision to close the scheme.