Keele University Childcare Vouchers

Employer-Supported Childcare Vouchers are a tax efficient means by which you can pay for your childcare. The University operates a childcare voucher scheme in association with Computershare Voucher Services whereby staff agree to exchange part of their salary for childcare vouchers (up to a maximum of £243* per month), which are then used to pay for registered childcare.

Changes to Childcare Vouchers

The existing childcare voucher scheme is open to new entrants until April 2018. However, the Government is introducing a new child care scheme; Tax-Free Childcare, which will eventually replace Employer-Supported Childcare Vouchers. Tax-Free Childcare will not be available through salary sacrifice; instead, the Government has decided to appoint National Savings & Investments, an executive agency of the Chancellor, to deliver the new scheme in partnership with HMRC. The new Tax-Free Childcare scheme is due to start early in 2017.

You are advised to consider, whether you are eligible for either scheme and, if so, which scheme might be most appropriate for you. There are a number of websites that can provide you with the relevant information. Computershare Vouchers http://www.giveyourselfachoice.com has a 'decision tree' to help you decide on which scheme is best for you and will depend on a number of factors such as the age of your children, family and work circumstances, childcare costs and income.

If you would like to access the childcare voucher scheme, please contact Computershare Voucher Services directly on 0845 002 1111 or visit the website at www.computersharevoucherservices.com . You will need to enter the employer scheme reference number: 14171177.

To see how much you could save, click on the Computershare link to their voucher calculator: https://myaccount.computersharevoucherservices.com/Parent/EligibilityCalculator.aspx . A parent information pack can be obtained from: http://www.computersharevoucherservices.com/parents/Pages/parent-information-pack.aspx

If you are eligible but not currently receiving childcare vouchers, you will be able to join the scheme through Keele until April 2018, and you will be able to continue to buy vouchers through salary sacrifice until 1st of September following your child's 15th birthday (16th birthday for children with a disability) or until the University ceases to run the scheme (whichever date arrives first). If you are currently using Computershare vouchers, or decide to join until April 2018, through the University, you will not lose your existing childcare voucher entitlement when Tax Free Childcare is implemented. You will be able to choose whether you continue receiving Employer-Supported Childcare Vouchers (currently through Computershare) or move to Tax-Free Childcare, although a household cannot be in receipt of support through both schemes at the same time.

If you move employers after April 2018 you will no longer be entitled to Employer-Supported Childcare Vouchers, although you will be able to join the new Tax-Free Childcare scheme if you meet the eligibility requirements.

The following website gives you some details of the new scheme and you can request an email update on when you will be able to apply for the new scheme should you wish to do so.  We will also distribute further details of the new Tax-Free Childcare scheme when they become available.

https://www.gov.uk/government/news/tax-free-childcare-10-things-parents-should-know 

Please note that this does not affect the Day Nursery Scheme that is also operated by Keele University. 

*For parents who joined a childcare voucher scheme after 6 April 2011, the amount of childcare vouchers you can request each month is capped at £243 for a Basic rate taxpayer, £124 for a Higher rate taxpayer and £110 for an Additional rate taxpayer. If you joined your employer's childcare voucher scheme before 6 April 2011, you can request up to £243 a month (£55 a week) in childcare vouchers, regardless of your tax status, providing you remain in the same employer's scheme.