Need Help with the Cost of Child Care?
Parent's in Ontario, Seneca and Yates Counties may take advantage of a financial assistance program to help with the cost of child care. The program operates on a sliding scale with parents sharing the cost.
To apply for this program you will need to fill out a service/childcare application, available by calling the numbers below. Based on your application, your family will be assigned a weekly fee. Care may be used in a legally exempt, registered or licensed home or in a licensed center.
This information will help in your child care search regarding the average cost of care by geographic location, age of child, and types of child care.
Financial Assistance Programs
To qualify for assistance, in Ontario County
To qualify for assistance, in Seneca County
Child and Family Resources also has funding available through a grant from United Way of Seneca County, to qualify for assistance:
To qualify for assistance, in Yates County
Other Assistance that may be available and appropriate to Your Family!
Income Tax Credits
Taxes are infamous for being complex and frustrating, and it's no surprise that every year more people seek filing assistance.TaxHelp.org offers a guide providing a detailed breakdown of tax benefits such as the Child Tax Credit, Education Credits (the American Opportunity and the Lifetime Learning Credit), and Head of Household status. Specific family savings plans are also covered at length: the Traditional IRA and Roth IRA, 401(k)'s, college plans such as the 529 Plan and the Coverdell Education Savings Account.
Child and Dependent Care Tax Credit
If you paid someone to care for your child, spouse, or dependent last year, you may be able to claim the Child and Dependent Care Credit on your Federal income tax return. This credit is available to persons who in order to work or to look for work have to pay for child care services. A qualifying person is your dependent child age 12 or younger when the care was provided. Additionally, your spouse and certain other individuals who are physically or mentally incapable of self-care may also be qualifying persons. The care must have been provided so you - and your spouse if you are married filing jointly - could work or look for work.
The credit is a percentage based depending upon your adjusted gross income and the amount of child and dependent care expenses you paid to a child care provider.
For more information and the 10 Things to Know About the Child and Dependent Care Credit please visit the website for Child and Dependent Care Tax Credit.
Earned Income Tax Credit
The Federal and State Earned Income Tax Credits are refundable tax benefits for working people with low or moderate incomes. This tax credit helps with the burden of social security taxes and to provide an incentive to work. EITC, the Earned Income Tax Credit or EIC, Earned Income Credit is a tax credit to help you keep more of what you earned.
Workers who qualify can claim and receive a tax refund credit some or all of the taxes with held during the tax year. They may also qualify for extra cash back from the IRS and New York State if their EITC is higher than what they owe in taxes.
For more information and qualifying requirements and to file a tax return call the IRS toll free at 1-800-829-1040 or call NY State taxpayer at
1 -800-225-5829. Visit the IRS website for further assistance.
Department of Social Services Financial Aid
Working parents with incomes at or below certain guidelines may qualify for financial aid with their local county Department of Social Services.
Additional help with child care cost may be available through your employer. Some of the benefits they may be available are:
Dependent Care Spending Account: Money is set aside before payroll taxes are deducted, from an employee's gross salary in to a nontaxable account used to pay for child care. This allows the employee to pay for child care expenses with tax free dollars.
In addition, employers can receive a tax credit equal to 25% of Qualified expenses for employee child care and 10% of expenses for child care resource and referral services for employees.
Qualified child care expenses include: (1) costs paid or incurred: to acquire, construct, rehabilitate or expand property that is used for am employer's child care facility; (2) for the operation of an employer's child care program, including the costs of training and compensation for employees working in the child care program (and scholarship programs); or (3) contracts with a child care program to provide child care services for employees of the employer. Programs must meet applicable state and local laws and regulations. Such programs must have open enrollment to employees of the employer, not discriminate in favor of highly paid employees, and at least 30% of the children enrolled must be dependents of the employer's employees.
Qualified child care resource and referral services are amounts paid or incurred under a contract to provide child care resource and referral services to employees of the employer.
Flexible Spending Accounts, FSA
Also referred to as a “cafeteria plan”, allows employers to offer a range of benefits. One example is an employee can set aside a portion of earnings to pay for medical expenses. This money is set aside from the employees’ gross salary, before taxes. Money deducted from an employee’s pay into an FSA is not subject to payroll taxes. Employee’s choose from a menu of benefits and customize their benefits package.
Child Care Vouchers or Reimbursements
An employer may offer workers a child care allowance or subsidy that families can use toward a child care arrangement of their choice.
Some child care centers offer scholarships for child care. Some have grants available depending on income. Some have a sliding fee scale; meaning depending on the parent income the fee for child care is adjusted. Some offer multi children discounts. Make sure to inquire regarding the above mentioned to see if the program you have chosen offers any of these.
Military Families may qualify for a Department of Defense Military Subsidy. For more information visit the Child Care Aware website. Their website is set up to help identify eligibility for fee assistance and to guide you and your child care provider through the application process. There are frequently asked questions that will help you with your concerns. The website is setup to answer your questions and concerns by each specific military branch.