The start date for a new government scheme offering help with childcare costs has been put back by more than a year.
It was originally planned that the Tax-Free Childcare initiative would be introduced in autumn 2015.
But when legal action was brought by a group of childcare voucher providers involved in delivering the scheme that Tax-Free Childcare will eventually replace, they were granted an interim order preventing implementation of Tax-Free Childcare.
Following a Supreme Court judgement in the government’s favour on 1 July, the Treasury said that Tax-Free Childcare was now expected to launch from early 2017.
Exchequer Secretary to the Treasury Damian Hinds said: “We are pleased that the government’s proposals for delivering Tax-Free Childcare have been found to be clearly lawful. We are now pressing ahead with the scheme as part of our ongoing commitment to support working families.”
Tax-Free Childcare will provide up to 1.8 million families across the UK with up to £2,000 of childcare support per year, per child, via an online system.
The existing Employer-Supported Childcare scheme, often referred to as childcare vouchers, will remain open to new entrants until Tax-Free Childcare is launched. Parents who wish to remain in Employer-Supported Childcare once Tax-Free Childcare is launched will be able to do so, while their current employer continues to offer the voucher scheme.
Link: The Supreme Court ruling