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How the scheme works


1. Who should I contact if I want to know more about the scheme?
 
To find out more:
 
  • Take a look at the Parents section of our website
  • Call our Customer Service team
  • Contact your HR or talent team, or Childcare Co-ordinator.
 
2. How do I go about joining the scheme?
 
Please visit our 'How do I join?' page for further information.
 
3. Are childcare vouchers available to self-employed workers?
 
No, childcare vouchers are only available where the parent is paid through Pay As You Earn.
 
4. What is my ID number? What is my ID number?
 
Whether you're a carer, parent or employer, we'll have allocated you a unique ID number. You will need to quote this each time you contact us so that we can access your records, process your order or change any of your details.
 
 
5. How do I pay my carer? How do I pay my carer? How do I pay my carer? How do I pay my carer?
 
E-Vouchers are an accessible, flexible and environmentally friendly product.
 
Simply log in to your online account (this is set up for you when you register for vouchers), to pay your carer using e-Vouchers.
 
You pay your carer electronically, using your secure online account to authorise payment. We transfer funds into your carer's bank account by BACS transfer, in line with the carer's preferred payment date. 
 
There are three ways to pay a carer:
› One-off payment: make a one-off payment to your carer(s) immediately.

› Recurring scheduled payment: make a regular payment to your carer(s), by setting up a recurring scheduled payment on a weekly, fortnightly, 4-weekly or monthly basis.

› One-off scheduled payment: make a one-off payment to your carer(s) on a future date, for example in July for a summer camp, by setting it up in advance.
 
 
 
6. Can I order childcare vouchers for more than one child?
 
Yes, as long as you are the parent, or legal guardian with parental or financial responsibilities for the child or step-child in question. However, the maximum voucher value is capped by the Government (in relation to your tax band), no matter how many children you have.
 
You can use your childcare vouchers to pay different carers. If you do use different carers, it is very important that each carer you want to use is registered with the relevant governing body and us.
 
 
7. Can I order childcare vouchers for any child?
 
No. To receive childcare vouchers, you must be either the parent, or legal guardian with parental or financial responsibilities for the child or step-child that is receiving childcare. This includes foster children, legally adopted children and situations where you have parental rights during an adoption process.
 
8. My child was born in April but I didn’t join the childcare voucher scheme until I returned to work in November. Can I receive childcare vouchers for the months I have missed in the current tax year?
 
If you join a voucher scheme part way through a tax year, you can catch up on any missed vouchers if:
  • you haven’t already taken your full entitlement in that tax year
  • your child was born in the months you’re claiming for
  • you were employed at that time by your current employer
  • your employer was running a scheme at that time
  • your employer allows it
  • the amount specified does not reduce your wage below the national living/minimum wage threshold.
 You can do this by contacting us.
 
9. When can I use my childcare vouchers? When can I use my childcare vouchers?
 
Your childcare vouchers will be available on or around your pay date. You can either use your childcare vouchers immediately or save them up over several pay periods and use them to pay for childcare at a later date.
For example, you could save up to pay for childcare arrangements during the school holidays.
 
10. What if my partner is already taking part in a childcare scheme with their employer?
 
You can both join your employers’ childcare schemes, further increasing your tax and National Insurance savings. You can use both sets of childcare vouchers to pay for the same child or more than one child, with one or more carers.
 
11. My employer doesn’t offer childcare vouchers at the moment. What can I do to encourage them?
 
We can give your employer all the information they need to set up a scheme with us. All you need to do is ask us to send some information to them or ask them to contact us for more details.
 
Alternatively you can register your employer’s interest on their behalf and a member of our Relationship Management team will contact them for you.
 
 
12. Will all registered childcare providers accept these vouchers?
 
All registered childcare providers can accept childcare vouchers. If you have any difficulties, please contact our Carer Relations team  and they will be able to help.
 
 
13. I’m using the childcare voucher scheme, and I’m due to go on maternity leave, can I stay on the scheme?
 
It’s best to check with your employer as scheme rules can vary. Many, but not all, employers allow you to continue receiving childcare vouchers while you’re on maternity leave.
 
If you’re required to stop your childcare voucher order while you’re on maternity leave, you need to ensure that you place an order in every 12-month rolling period to remain eligible for the scheme. This can be for the minimum amount - with Computershare that’s £20.
 
If you’re planning on taking 12-months’ maternity leave, your eligibility for the scheme may expire if you’re not entitled to childcare vouchers in that period. We suggest you speak with your employer to come to a suitable arrangement. This may require them to change their scheme rules.
 
Remember, your partner, if you have one, can still order childcare vouchers as soon as your first child is born.
 
14. Can I start on the voucher scheme during maternity leave?
 
If this is your first baby then you can apply for childcare vouchers as soon as the child is born, providing your employers’ scheme allows you to receive childcare vouchers while you’re on maternity leave. Your partner, if you have one, can apply for vouchers with their employer as soon as the child is born.
 
However, if it’s not your first child, you and/or your partner can apply for childcare vouchers today and start to build up an account balance to use your childcare vouchers as and when you need them.
 
15. Can you claim childcare vouchers while on maternity leave, i.e. while receiving Statutory Maternity Pay?
 
It’s best to check with your employer as scheme rules can vary. For example, many, but not all, employers allow their employees to continue receiving childcare vouchers while on maternity leave.
 
Remember, your partner, if you have one, can still order childcare vouchers while you are on maternity leave.
 
16. What if I go on maternity leave and I’m not paid for the full year? Can I still get childcare vouchers?
 
It’s best to check with your employer as scheme rules can vary. For example, many, but not all, employers allow you to continue receiving childcare vouchers while on maternity leave.

If you’re required to stop your childcare voucher order while on maternity leave, you need to ensure that you place an order in every 12-month rolling period to remain eligible for the scheme. This can simply be for the minimum amount - with Computershare it’s £20.
 
If you’re planning on taking 12-months’ maternity leave, your eligibility for the scheme may expire if you’re not entitled to childcare vouchers in that period. We suggest you speak with your employer to come to a suitable arrangement. This may require them to change their scheme rules.
 
Remember, if this is your first baby then you can’t apply until the child is born. Providing the baby is born before the scheme closes in April 2018, you can register for childcare vouchers once the baby is born, and place a forward order up to 12 months in advance, for when you have returned to work. However, your partner, if you have one, can still order childcare vouchers as soon as your first child is born, as long as that’s before the scheme closes in April 2018.
 
17. After April 2018, can I continue to use the childcare voucher scheme if I switch from one employer to another, where both use the voucher scheme, perhaps even the same provider?
 
No. Once you move employer (other than where a TUPE transfer is involved) you will not be able to re-join the Childcare Voucher scheme, even if it is run by the same provider.
 
18. Can I continue with the childcare voucher scheme after April 2018, if I’m already in a scheme at that point?.
 
Yes, you can continue to use childcare vouchers for as long as you want to.
I reduced my childcare voucher contributions last year,
 
19. Can I increase them again at the end of this year? an I increase them again at the end of this year?
 
Yes, you can change the value of vouchers you receive at any time.