Several key child care assistance policies—income eligibility limits, waiting lists, parent copayments, reimbursement rates, and eligibility for parents searching for a job—have a significant impact on families’ access to help paying for child care, the level of help they receive, and the quality of care. State policies in these essential areas are examined in Pivot Point, an annual report by the National Women’s Law Center. However, parents’ access to affordable, high-quality care is also affected by a number of other state policy decisions. This brief explores some of the policies that determine when states will reimburse for care, including whether they reimburse for care beyond parents’ work hours such as during a parent’s commute or study time, and whether they reimburse for child care on days when a child is absent from care.

Download the full brief below.