HMRC tells childminders to repay tax credits

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HMRC tells childminders to repay tax credits and prove business is run to make profits

Summary:  It seems many childminders will be under yet more pressure to work longer hours and take on more children. They will need to show a business plan and that their business is run for profit, so that they don’t expect tax credit or income top-up. But many childminders are restricted by places taken up by their own children in the ratios.  Their business is restricted by the size of their accommodation, number of seats in the car (if they have a car)  and number of parents seeking childcare, hours requested by parents and so on.   Running a childcare business from home is not like  most other businesses.   Childminders are also under pressure to keep their fees down to make their service more affordable to parents. Childminders also work many hours unpaid when complying with Ofsted regulations and requirements to track children’s progress, plan sessions and provide feedback, as well as preparing for inspections and organising up to date training.

Childminders provide a valuable service for parents, for children and for communities.  So why are they being unfairly treated as if their self-employment is somehow not credible or professional enough?

Is this another form of discrimination against women (for it is mostly women) whose work is primarily caregiving work, looking after children?

 

January 25th 2016   (article is published in Nursery World).

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