Child Care Subsidy

Nova Scotia's Child Care Subsidy Program helps eligible families, with children 12 years and under, pay for a portion of child care fees at licensed child care facilities and regulated family home day care agencies.

How Does It Work?

Subsidies are paid directly to the centre or agency of your choice, on your behalf.

If you choose to transfer your child to another child care centre or family home day care agency, within the province, your subsidy will go with you.

Eligibility

Eligibility is based on your family’s (1) income, (2) finances, and (3) social need.

You must be eligible in all three areas to qualify.

  1. Income
    • Line 236 of your CRA Income Tax Notice of Assessment is used to calculate income.
    • If you do not have a recent Notice of Assessment, current paystubs may be used. Gross income minus some deductions will be considered income.
    • If you have additional sources of income, they must also be reported and will be considered in the calculations.
  2. Finances
    • To be eligible for the program, you may not have more than $50,000 in savings or liquid assets.
  3. Social Need
    • You must be working, job searching, in school or have a special need within the family.

Subsidy Rates

  • Approved daily Subsidy rates are calculated on a sliding scale and will vary depending on the total family income and number of dependents within the family.
  • If the daily government rate is calculated at less than $1.00 per day, applicants will not be eligible for Subsidy.
  • Eligibility for child care subsidy will be reviewed annually or more often, if determined by your Caseworker.
  • If you are receiving a subsidy, you are required to notify your Caseworker of any changes in your circumstances which may affect your eligibility, as those changes happen.
  • If you fail to notify your Caseworker, you may lose your subsidy and/or be required to repay the subsidy you've already received.

Your Responsibilities

  1. You are required to find a suitable child care centre or family home day care agency, and to notify your Caseworker of the start and end dates of care.
  2. If your child begins care before confirmation of eligibility of subsidy, you are responsible for paying full child care costs.
  3. If you transfer your child to another care facility or agency, or terminate care, you are responsible for notifying your Caseworker.

What You Will Need

  1. A signed and completed Child Care Subsidy Application Form.
  2. A copy of your most recent CRA Notice of Assessment.
  3. A copy of a current pay stub.
  4. Copies of any additional documents that are relevant to your family situation (for example, financial statements, university/college/ or school registration, proof of custody or citizenship).

What to Expect

  • Assessments can take up to 6 weeks to complete.
  • Applications are assessed by a Child Care Subsidy Caseworker. Your Caseworker may call you with additional questions, and will notify you of eligibility or ineligibility.
  • Incomplete applications or applications submitted without required documents will not be processed.

Our New Application Form

The Child Care Subsidy Application form has been redesigned.

The new form is a ‘fillable PDF’. This format allows you to fill in the form (using Adobe Reader) and save your information in the file (but, you still have the option of printing the form and filling it out on paper).

There are also new options for submitting your form and documents to the Department.

To find out more, and to get the application form, proceed to the Child Care Subsidy Application Form web page.

General Inquiries and Questions

Intake Toll free: 1-844-804-2084

Fax: 902-424-7714

Regional Office Locations