Information videos from our Family Benefits Advice Service

The trained advisors from our Family Benefits Advice Service share their expertise in this series of videos on a wide range of issues including support with childcare costs and other benefits that parents and families may be entitled to. Our team has been very busy throughout the COVID-19 pandemic responding to queries through our Freephone helpline and online advice service, and these are some of the most common issues we have been asked about.

Childcare Vouchers and Tax-Free Childcare

Some advice for parents who use Childcare Vouchers or Tax-Free Childcare to pay for childcare and how COVID-19 may have impacted parents using these forms of financial support.

 

James Gallagher from the Family Benefits Advice Service outlines how Tax-Free Childcare can pay 20% of a family's registered childcare costs for eligible working parents. To find out if you can claim Tax-Free Childcare to support with your childcare costs, call us on Freephone 0800 028 3008.

 
 

Brenda McShane from our Family Benefits Advice Service shares some useful information on opening a Tax-Free Childcare account. Parents can open a Tax-Free Childcare 30 days before the end of maternity leave (this doesn't include any paid annual leave that may be taken prior to actually returning to work). Tax-Free Childcare pays 20% of childcare costs for eligible working families.

 
 

Chris Briggs from Employers For Childcare's Family Benefits Advice Service explains the eligibility rules for Childcare Vouchers, since the scheme closed to new entrants in October 2018. No new parents can now join the Childcare Voucher scheme, but those using it can continue to do so, while they remain eligible.

 
 

Chris Briggs from the Family Benefits Advice Service offers a summary of how Tax-Free Childcare can help working parents save money on their childcare costs and advises parents on how to access the Tax-Free Childcare system for those unable to use the Government Gateway portal.

 
 

Parents who haven't salary sacrificed the maximum amount (according to what tax band they fall into) during the current tax year, can, with their employer's permission, request to ''backdate' their Childcare Vouchers to salary sacrifice up to their full annual allowance in the remaining months of the tax year. Chris Briggs from the Family Benefits Advice Service explains.

 

How we can help you

Some information on the services provided by our charity’s Family Benefits Advice Service.

 

James Gallagher from our Family Benefits Advice Service outlines how we are here to help parents and families. While the team specialises in childcare support, we can look at all types of financial support parents are entitled to, including disability benefits, housing benefit, free school meals, school uniform allowance, Healthy Start vouchers and much more.

 
 

Chris Briggs from the Family Benefits Advice Service outlines how the team can make a difference to families, helping them find and pay for the childcare they need to get into, and stay in, work.

 
 

James Gallagher from the Family Benefits Advice Service outlines how the team supports employers through the delivery of a free information and outreach service. We can help employers to support their employees to make sure they are receiving all the financial support they are entitled to, including with childcare costs.

 

Benefit entitlements explained

Some useful information for parents on some of the benefits they may be entitled to.

 

James Gallagher from the Family Benefits Advice Service explains how Universal Credit can help some working parents with their registered childcare costs. To find out if you may be entitled to claim Universal Credit, get in touch with the team for a free better off calculation.

 
 

James Gallagher from Employers For Childcare's Family Benefits Advice Service offers some advice for new parents on finding and paying for registered childcare.

 
 

Brenda McShane from the Family Benefits Advice Service reminds parents that financial help is available with paying for registered childcare costs. Most working parents will be entitled to some form of financial support with childcare through Childcare Vouchers, Tax-Free Childcare, Tax Credits or Universal Credit and we can help them work out what is best for them.

 
 

James Gallagher from Employers For Childcare's Family Benefits Advice Service outlines a recent change which means that some parents in Northern Ireland who are claiming Universal Credit or other income-based benefits and are moving into work or increasing their hours may be eligible to have their childcare costs paid upfront through the Advisor Discretion Fund.

 
 

James Gallagher from our Family Benefits Advice Service addresses a common myth - that those who are in work are not entitled to any support with childcare. Most working parents are eligible for some form of support with childcare costs - contact us on Freephone 0800 028 3008 for a free, personalised 'better off' calculation and we can help you work out what's best for your family.

 
 

James Gallagher from our Family Benefits Advice Service reminds parents to find out what financial support is available with back to school childcare costs - such as wraparound childcare through breakfast or after school clubs. Most families are entitled to some form of support with their childcare costs and we can help identify what is available, based on your unique circumstances.

 
 

To celebrate International Twins Day, Chris Briggs from our Family Benefits Advice Service reminds parents (or expectant parents) of twins and multiples to make sure they are receiving all the financial support they are entitled to, to help with the added costs associated with a multiple birth.

 
 

Brenda McShane from the Family Benefits Advice Service explains what happens to parents in receipt of Income Support when their youngest child turns five. Brenda offers advice to those in this situation, which will mean making a new claim for Universal Credit. **Please note, this information is for those in Northern Ireland only, for those in other parts of the UK, information may be different.

 
 

What is the Sure Start Maternity Grant and who is eligible? Brenda McShane from our Family Benefits Advice Service provides some information on the Sure Start Maternity Grant, which is available to eligible expectant or new parents in England, Wales and Northern Ireland (not Scotland). Includes information on how to claim this support with the costs associated with a new baby.

 
 

Chris Briggs outlines how the Family Benefits Advice Service can support adoptive parents to find out what financial support they are entitled to, including with childcare costs.

 

Personalised advice and guidance available

These videos are intended to provide general advice and guidance around some of the most common questions our Family Benefits Advice Service responds to. The team is also available to provide personalised advice to individuals and families on issues affecting them, particularly at this challenging time. To speak to a member of the team, Freephone 0800 028 3008 or you can drop us an email to hello@employersforchildcare.org.

Last year, where we completed a personalised ‘better off’ calculation, we identified an average of almost £2,800 in financial support for families, so it could be a call that is well worth making.