Child Care Subsidy

Students who have young, dependent children in child care may be eligible for this program, which provides funds to assist students with the cost of child care licensed by the state of Michigan. Students who wish to apply for the subsidy must meet several eligibility criteria and must submit both a federal Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) and an application for the subsidy.


To be eligible for consideration for the child care subsidy, students must:

  1. Be enrolled at least half-time in a University of Michigan-Ann Arbor degree program at the undergraduate, graduate, or professional level, or be enrolled in a non-degree program with a defined educational objective. Please note:
    • Students who are not in a degree program must complete a Non-Candidate for Degree Questionnaire (see application section below).
    • Graduate students with approved detached study status may satisfy the half-time enrollment requirement.
    • Doctoral students who are not enrolled or on detached study, but who are actively pursuing research or completing their Ph.D. dissertation, may be eligible for the subsidy if their academic pursuits are equal to at least half-time enrollment. Doctoral students should complete the Doctoral Student Non-Enrollment Certification Form (see application section below).
    • Graduate students appointed as graduate student instructors or graduate student staff assistants should also review the child care subsidy provisions of the GEO contract.
  2. Have dependent child(ren) who are 12 years old or younger or dependent child(ren) who have special needs and are under the age of 19.
  3. Incur child care expenses from a child care provider that is licensed by the state of Michigan. You may apply if you are not using a licensed provider at the time of application. However, if you are awarded a subsidy, you must change to a licensed provider and use that provider's services for at least 75 percent of each term that you receive the subsidy.
  4. Demonstrate financial need for this subsidy (see information on eligibility, below).
  5. Meet Satisfactory Academic Progress as defined by the University of Michigan.
  6. Be a single parent or, if married, have a spouse who is a student (enrolled at least half-time in an undergraduate or graduate degree program) or is gainfully employed and earning income for a minimum of 20 hours per week (a combination of school and work for 20 hours per week will be considered).

U-M will make an exception to employment criteria for a non-student spouse who cannot work due to a disability. Please note this on your application so your situation may be considered during review. You may be asked to document your spouse's employment or student status. Read an explanation of why the university requires spouses to be in school or employed.

Note: If you do not meet eligibility criteria for the Child Care Subsidy Program but believe you have an extenuating circumstance, please advise us and offer details.


  1. Complete and submit a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) (U.S. citizens and permanent residents only) using School Code 002325.  International students should not complete the FAFSA but should see Step 2c below. Note:  If you have already submitted this year’s FAFSA to apply for financial aid, do NOT submit it again.
  2. Complete and submit to the U-M Office of Financial Aid:

a.  The appropriate Child Care Subsidy Application (found in the "SUBSIDY APPLICATIONS AND RELATED FORMS" section below).  If you received the subsidy for fall/winter terms and want it for spring/summer, you must submit a new application.

b.  Copies of signed previous-year federal income tax returns (1040, 1040A, 1040EZ, 1040NR, 1040NR-EZ, or Form 8843) or a Non-Filing Statement (below) from you and your spouse. Submit the Non-Filing Statement if you/your spouse were not required to submit tax returns based on IRS income requirements.

c.  International students only: Submit both the Child Care Subsidy Application and an International Student Financial Data Form.  The International Student Financial Data Form requires you to submit tax return information.

Note:  If you previously submitted any of these forms to apply for financial aid, do NOT submit them again.


For Fall/Winter: Students are encouraged to apply by April 30 for the following fall. Notification will be sent to eligible applicants beginning July 1. This will allow you adequate time to plan and make your child care arrangements. Students who apply after April 30 may be denied funding if all funds have been committed to applicants who applied earlier.

For Spring/Summer: Students are encouraged to apply by March 15. Notification will be sent to eligible applicants in April.  This will allow you adequate time to plan and make your child care arrangements. Funding for spring and summer terms may be limited. Applicants will be funded on a first-come, first-served basis. Students who apply after March 15 may be denied funding if all funds have been committed to applicants who applied earlier.

The amount of Child Care Subsidy awarded to eligible applicants is based on applicants' financial need, the number of children they have enrolled in licensed Michigan child care facilities, their child care expenses, and available funding. Applicants will be notified in writing of their eligibility for the subsidy and the amount they will receive.
The subsidy amount cannot exceed the cost of your licensed child care.

2019-2020 Maximum Awards

  • For one child, award maximum is $2,940 per term ($1,472 per half-term for 2020 spring or summer)
  • For two children, award maximum is $4,310 per term ($2,155 per half-term for 2020 spring or summer)
  • For three or more children, award maximum is $5,682 per term ($2,841 per half term for 2020 spring or summer)


You must demonstrate financial need to be eligible for the Child Care Subsidy program.  Financial need is calculated as follows:

Estimated Cost of Attendance
– Expected Family Contribution/Available Resources
= Demonstrated Financial Need

Estimated Cost of Attendance: This estimated amount includes tuition, fees, an allowance for books and supplies, a reasonable allowance for living expenses, and child care expenses as reported on the Child Care Subsidy Application.

Expected Family Contribution/Available Resources: The Office of Financial Aid calculates your expected family contribution based on your Child Care Subsidy Application, your tax returns, and the FAFSA or International Student Financial Data Form. The calculation is based on such items as your earnings; checking, savings, cash, and money market accounts; investments and real estate holdings other than your family's primary residence; business equity; untaxed income; income from assistantships; and other financial aid you are receiving through your academic department and the Office of Financial Aid.


Funds are disbursed through the University Payroll System in the form of a check payable to you or, if you have authorized direct deposit, funds will be deposited to your bank account. For information about direct deposit, (see the Direct Deposit section from the Student Business page of Wolverine Access.

We will need a copy of your child care contract or other documents verifying your child care expenses and your provider's Michigan licensure prior to payment.


Child Care Subsidy Application and Instructions

Other Forms You May Need

U-M Office of Financial Aid forms    
International Student Financial Data Form 2020-21  2019-20
Ph.D Student Non-Enrollment Certification Form 2020-21 2019-20
Submitting Federal Income Tax Return/Non-Filing Statement 2020-21 2019-20
Non-Filing Statement (Non-U.S. citizens) 2020-21 2019-20
Non-Candidate for Degree Questionnaire 2020-21 2019-20
Household Information Questionnaire 2020-21 2019-20
Dependent Child(ren) Questionnaire 2020-21 2019-20
Budget Re-Evaluation Form (available October 1 each year)   2019-20

Academic years defined: fall 2018, winter 2019 and spring/summer 2019 are in the 2018-19 year; fall 2019, winter 2020 and spring/summer 2020 are in the 2019-20 year.

If you need assistance completing the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) or if you have questions about the Child Care Subsidy, staff members in the Office of Financial Aid can assist you. You may also visit this page for Frequently Asked Questions about the U-M Child Care Subsidy Program.