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The payment cycle

The council pays providers in advance in 2 lump sum payments. Providers are responsible for managing cash flow in their business. Submitting headcount data that is on time and accurate is essential for the smooth running of the payment process.

The process for funding providers is the same each term, consisting of 3 tasks completed by providers and 3 payments processed by the council.

The forecast payment

This is paid before the start of the term.

The provider completes task with the expected attendance data.

The council pays 60% of the forecasted funding for the term in a lump sum payment.

The actual payment

The provider completes task with actual attendance data as at headcount date.

The council pays balance of funding for the term (total for term less the forecast payment) in a lump sum payment.

The amendment payment

This is paid during second half of term.

If required, the provider amends actual headcount for:

  • new starters
  • leavers
  • changes in hours per week

The council will calculate if there is a shortfall or overpayment in the term and will either:

  • process an additional lump sum payment shortfalls
  • reduce the next forecast payment to recoup any overpayments

Administration fees

It is a provider’s responsibility to submit funding claims through the provider portal tasks within the published deadlines and to make sure that the funding claim is complete and accurate.

As a child could be claiming funding across multiple settings, missed deadlines or submitting inaccurate and incomplete funding claims result in additional administration and can impact the payment to other providers.

Where additional administration resource is required, we reserve the right to charge an administration fee. This may happen when:

  • a provider missing the submission deadline for a funding claim
  • a submission contains substantial omissions
  • a submission contains substantial errors

The fee will be charged for a minimum of 1 hour and a maximum of 3 hours.

The current hourly rate is £16.50

Contact information

Early Years Team

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