Funded early education and childcare for working parents of 3 and 4-year-olds

Working parents of 3 and 4-year-olds may be entitled to 30 hours of funded childcare and early education per week, for 38 weeks of the year if certain criteria is met. This is known as the Extended Offer.

  • You do not have to use the full 30 hours each week
  • Childcare providers might allow you to spread the funded hours across the year. For example, if a provider is open 51 weeks of the year, they could offer you 22.25 funded hours a week.
  • Not all providers are able to offer 30 hours
  • You can claim up to 30 funded hours between up to three providers – but you cannot claim hours at more than two sites in a day

You can claim the 30 hours entitlement from the claim period after your child’s third birthday, provided a 30-hour code is obtained from HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC). Claim periods start on 1 January, 1 April and 1 September. 

You will continue to receive 30 hours funded early education and childcare, if your code remains valid.

Eligibility criteria

To check the full eligibility criteria and exceptions to eligibility visit the Childcare Choices website.

How do I apply?

You need to apply for the 30 hours via the Childcare Choices website and receive a 30 hours code. If you do not have access to the internet, you can call the HMRC Childcare Service helpline on 0300 123 4097.

  • You can apply for the 30 hours up to 16 weeks before your child becomes eligible
  • If you do not apply before the start of the term you want to start claiming the 30 hours, you will not be able to receive the funded hours that term. It is important that you apply in advance to ensure you get your entitlement
  • To keep your 30 hours funded childcare, you need to reconfirm you are eligible every 3 months, from your account. You will be reminded 4 weeks before the deadline.

If you have any further questions about 30 hours funded childcare, contact Norfolk Family Information Service or visit Childcare Choices website.