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Tax-Free Childcare can ease the cost of the return to school, says HMRC

Families may be eligible for Tax-Free Childcare (TFC) to help pay for breakfast clubs and after school clubs as their children go back to school, HMRC has said.

Eligible families can save money on their childcare and benefit from a government top-up worth up to £2,000 every year, or up to £4,000 a year if a child is disabled.

In June 2021, almost 308,000 families across the UK benefited from making use of TFC, but HMRC says thousands are still missing out on the opportunity.

TFC is available to parents or carers who have children aged up to 11, or 17 if their child is disabled. For every £8 a parent or carer deposits into their account, they will receive a £2 top-up, up to the value of £500 every three months, or £1,000 if their child is disabled.

The 20% top-up is paid into the TFC account and is ready to use almost instantly, meaning parents and carers can use the money towards the cost of childminders, breakfast clubs and after school clubs and approved play schemes.

Myrtle Lloyd, HMRC’s Director General for Customer Services, said: ‘As your children head back to school this autumn, don’t miss out on the opportunity to receive your 20% top-up to help pay for their childcare.

‘It is quick and easy to sign up, just search ‘Tax-Free Childcare’ on GOV.UK.’

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