What tax-free childcare benefits are available for working families in dentistry?

What tax-free benefits are available for working families in dentistry?

Dental nursing is 99% female – and dentistry overall is now more than 50% female – so childcare is a big consideration for working families in dentistry, says the British Association of Dental Nurses (BADN).

The association has issued guidance on the tax-free schemes and childcare help available following conversations with experts at HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC).

Some could be worth up to thousands of pounds a year.

Tax-free childcare

A government-funded top up scheme worth up to £2k a year (£4k if a child has a disability) for each child under the age of 11 (or 16 for a child with a disability) to help pay for approved childcare.

Full eligibility is on GOV.UK but in summary it is for working parents earning up to £100k each, at least national minimum wage for 16 hours a week and who do not receive tax credits, universal credit or childcare vouchers.

Tax-free childcare can be used with free childcare hours – either 15 or 30 hours depending on eligibility – and child benefit, which is currently £25.60 for the eldest or only child and £16.95 for each additional child.

You can use tax-free childcare to pay for approved childcare, for example:

  • Childminders, nurseries and nannies
  • After-school clubs and play schemes.

Your childcare provider must be signed up to the scheme before you can pay them and benefit from tax-free childcare.

Tax credits and universal credits also offer alternative childcare support and, while they can’t be used with tax-free childcare, they could be worth thousands to the household budget.

More information is available on the members’ area of the BADN website. Visit www.badn.org.uk.

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