Childcare boost for working parent families

WORKING parents will receive up to £1,200 a year to help with childcare costs under plans confirmed in yesterday’s Budget.

The policy was pre-announced on Tuesday but forms a key part of the government’s spending plan.

The tax break will be open to 2.5m families and will be worth up to £1,200 a year per child when it is introduced in 2015. Households where both parents work full-time but earn less than £150,000 each will be able to join the scheme, as long as they use approved providers.

George Osborne said the measures were designed to help “working parents struggling with the costs of childcare, and the mother wondering whether it makes financial sense to get a job”.

But some parents have criticised the scheme for penalising stay-at-home mothers. Around 1.3m families will benefit when the scheme is introduced, with 20 per cent of care or nanny costs met by the government up to the cap.