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2021-2022 Child Care Assistance Grant Program

The 21-22 Postdoctoral Scholar Child Care Assistance Grant Program provides up to $5,000/academic year/family to eligible postdoctoral scholars with dependent children to assist with child care.  Awards are paid monthly and are taxable income.

Eligibility Requirements

Applicant

  • Must be a postdoctoral scholar in good standing, and appointment end date must be 90+ days from the submission date of the Postdoctoral Scholar Child Care Assistance Grant application. One application/family should be submitted if both parents are postdoctoral scholars.

​Children

  • Must be your legal dependent(s) as shown on your 2020 federal income tax return. For children born after January 1, 2021, a birth certificate (or other official documentation) is required.
  • Must be 10 years old or younger (have a birth date after January 1, 2011).
  • If you have not filed a 2020 federal tax return, you must submit alternate documentation (e.g., birth certificates or dependent visas). All documentation must be in English or translated into English. Translated documentation must be notarized.

​Household Income

  • You must have annual household income of $150,000 or less. You must demonstrate your financial need by submitting appropriate income documentation (e.g., 2020 federal income tax documents), including untaxed income such as child support received. Postdocs experiencing significant changes in income from one year to the next are able to submit current income information.
  • If you share a household with the parent of your child(ren), they are considered a co-applicant and must also provide financial information.

​Documentation of Child Care Expenses

  • You must provide documentation of your child care expenses. Acceptable documentation includes:
    • ​Dependent Care form certified by your provider, or
    • Copy of a statement reflecting payments made from your child care provider, or
    • Copies of financial transactions with your provider.

​Award Level

  • Awards range from $1000 to $5000 for the 21-22 academic year, depending on family financial circumstances and documentation provided.
  • Award eligibility is based on your household's federal taxable gross earnings as documented by prior year tax forms, and the age and number of eligible children.
  • The Financial Aid Office considers your individual circumstances as explained on your application and establishes grant eligibility based on your individual financial situation.
  • Postdocs are eligible for one grant/family/per academic year. Funds are disbursed monthly, via the Graduate Financial Support (GFS) system, and are prorated for periods of eligibility less than 12 months. For example, if you are eligible for a $5000 award for the current year, you will receive $416.67 per month during periods of eligibility, provided the documentation of your expenses show your costs are at least that much. Those who become eligible after September 1 will only be eligible for the prorated amount. Taxes may be withheld from this income.

​Special Needs

If a tax dependent is 1-10 years old, requires extraordinary care which extends the financial burden of standard child care, these additional expenses may qualify an applicant for an additional $1000. The application allows a description of special needs that might qualify for a larger grant. Documentation of the diagnosis and proof of additional expenses (such as contracts or paid invoices from providers) are required.

Examples of special needs include:

  • Speech therapy
  • Occupational therapy
  • Training not provided for, subsidized, or qualified for reimbursements by a Health Care Spending Account of any other entity.

Situations not considered to be special needs include:

  • Multiple births
  • Paying above-average child care rates
  • Having high monthly non-child care expenses, including house or loans.

Application Process

  • Complete the Child Care Assistance Grant application
  • Complete the Child Care Subsidy Expense Certification form
  • Have the required documentation readily available for upload at the time you submit your application:
    • ​2020 Federal Income Tax Return (all pages)
      • ​1st year international postdocs who do not have a US income tax return may submit most recent translated foreign tax return or annual income statement
    • Birth certificates for child(ren) born after 1/1/2021
    • Invoices and/or receipts showing childcare expenses, including dates of service

To Submit Your Documents:

Missing or incomplete documents delay processing

For applications submitted beginning September 1, 2021:

  • September 15
  • January 15
  • May 15

You may submit a complete application during the first application period in which you become eligible. You may update documentation of actual expenses at any time. Funds are disbursed monthly as reimbursement for qualified expenses., The monthly amount will be equal to your total award level divided by 6 for 2021 and by 12 for subsequent years. You must reapply each year.

Frequently Asked Questions

I am currently temporarily working at reduced effort. Am I still eligible for the Postdoctoral Scholar Child Care Assistance Grant?

Postdocs are expected to be full-time. Under some circumstances, with approval from the Associate Vice Provost and Associate Dean of the Office of Postdoctoral Affairs, a postdoc may temporarily work part-time. In this case, you are eligible to apply for the Postdoctoral Scholar Child Care Assistance Grant. Postdocs on an approved unpaid personal Leave of Absence will generally not be eligible.

I do not have children who are dependents, but I am supporting other family members (e.g., parents, siblings). Am I eligible for this program?

No. This program was created specifically to support postdocs who are parents. You may also have unique needs, but these funds are only for postdocs who are also parents.

Someone else claims my child for tax purposes, but I still have expenses related to their support. Can I still apply?

Yes. You should provide information about the situation and your expenses in your application. Grant eligibility is based on financial need.

What are acceptable forms of documentation for our parent/child relationship?

  • Child is claimed as a dependent on your latest Federal tax return, or
  • Copy of a birth certificate naming you as a parent, or
  • Letter from the hospital naming you as a parent, or
  • Court Orders establishing custody or guardianship, or
  • F2 or J2 visa documentation

I am a postdoc who is also enrolled in a degree program. Can I apply?

Yes.

Where can I get more information about related taxes?

All support is subject to US and California tax law. You can find more information about taxes for postdocs at the Office of Postdoctoral Affairs

I still have questions. Who can I talk to?

The Financial Aid Office is managing this program in partnership with the Office of Postdoctoral Affairs. Please email Postdoc Family Support with additional questions.