30 hours free childcare – reconfirming your eligibility

Did you successfully apply for the autumn term this September? Then you were one of over 200,000 eligibility codes issued for children who were aged three by 31 August 2017. However - only 71% of these were validated by early September.

You’ll need to reconfirm your eligibility every 3 months in order to continue to receive your extra hours. See the ‘Reconfirming your eligibility’ section later in this blog for more information.

Applying for 30 hours free childcare for the first time - upcoming application deadlines

Parents can apply and have their eligibility checked for 30 hours free childcare via the Childcare Service . If you plan to apply for 30 hours free childcare in the next few months, here are some things you need to know:


And here are the application deadlines for your diary:


What happens after I’ve applied?

If you’re eligible, you’ll be given a 30 hours eligibility code. Take this 11-digit code, along with your National Insurance number and your child’s date of birth, to your chosen childcare provider.

The provider will use the Department for Education’s Eligibility Checking System (ECS) to confirm the validity of the code either directly, or via their Local Authority. Once the 30 hours code has been validated via the ECS, you’ll be able to take up your 30 hours place.


Reconfirming eligibility

You should be prompted every 3 months to reconfirm your eligibility through your childcare account and amend any details if necessary, or just press ‘reconfirm’ if nothing has changed.

You may also need to reconfirm your place with your childcare provider each term.


What if I’m no longer eligible?

On reconfirmation, if you’re no longer eligible for 30 hours you’ll enter a grace period where you can still retain your childcare for a short period of time.

›      A child who becomes ineligible during the first half of a funding block should be funded until the end of that funding block.

›      A child who becomes ineligible in the latter half of the funding block should be funded until the end of the following funding block.


For more information: https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/642828/30_hours_free_childcare_eligibility_codes_issued_and_validated.pdf

* 30 hours free childcare applies to England only.