Can I get any other help?
Some people with children are entitled to some level of child tax credit. If you will be, and how much, depends on your circumstances and income. The threshold will go down in April 2011, but you will still be able to You can get it on quite high incomes under £43,875 each year.
The tax credit calculation is very complicated. To check if you are entitled and how much you will get, see an adviser or use HMRC's calculator (see 'Links to other websites').
Help from your employer
Some organisations now offer their staff help to pay for childcare, usually in the form of childcare vouchers, loans to pay for childcare, or workplace nurseries. Your employer doesn't have to offer this help but if they don't already offer this scheme, it might be worth suggesting they think about it. See 'Links to other websites'.
Sure Start children's centres
If you have a child are under 5 you may be able to help from a Sure Start children's centre. They can help advise you on local childcare options, parenting, managing your money, healthy eating, other health issues, and how to get specialist support like speech therapy. See 'Links to other websites'. Directgov also have useful information about how to choose childcare or a nanny.
Free education for 3 and 4 year olds
All three and four year olds are entitled to 15 hours a week of free childcare with a 'registered provider' (like a school, nursery or playgroup education) for 38 weeks a year. For more details of how you can make use of this see 'Links to other websites'.
If your child has a disability
If your little one is disabled there is more help available, but it’s not always easy to find out about. The government's Early Support website has information about the help you can get with health, education, childcare, money, and social services. See 'Links to other websites'.
You may also be able to get Disability Living Allowance for your child. For more details see 'Links to other websites'.
If you think your child is likely to be entitled, we recommend that you get help from an adviser to fill in the application form. Not only is it quite hard emotionally to fill in the form yourself, your claim is more likely to be successful if you get help from someone who understands exactly how it will be assessed.
Contact a family are a charity that provide advice, information and support to the parents of disabled children. Speak to them on their helpline about what other help you could get: 0808 808 3555.