It also confirmed that, as a direct result of the legal challenge, the scheme is now expected to launch from early 2017. The existing Employer‑Supported Childcare scheme will remain open to new entrants until Tax-Free Childcare is launched.
As a result of the legal action, the court placed a suspension on the development of the scheme which prevented key delivery steps from taking place. This legal action was brought by a small group of childcare voucher providers involved in the delivery of the scheme that Tax-Free Childcare will eventually replace.
Exchequer Secretary to the Treasury, Damian Hinds said:
We are pleased that the government’s proposals for delivering Tax-Free Childcare have been found to be clearly lawful. This government is absolutely clear on the importance of supporting families with their childcare costs.
It is disappointing that some organisations involved in the existing scheme felt the need to take and persist in this costly and wasteful course of action, which has led to a delay in the launch of Tax-Free Childcare.
We are now pressing ahead with the scheme as part of our ongoing commitment to support working families.
Tax-Free Childcare is part of the government’s long-term plan to support working families and will provide up to 1.8 million families across the UK with up to £2,000 of childcare support per year, per child, via a new simple online system.
The government is clear on the importance of supporting families with their childcare costs. Spending on childcare was increased by £1 billion in the last Parliament and the government has also committed to doubling free childcare for working parents of three and four year olds to 30 hours a week.
(The above was released on gov.uk on 1st July 2015)