A look at the Singapore baby bonus
It’s good to have babies – enjoying the cute little ones, having family life, experiencing unconditional love, passing down your genes… now it even got better. You get paid for having kids. Yup you read right, in Singapore you actually get cash incentives for doing the boogy woogy with your partner and creating an embodiment of yourselves!
The Singapore Baby Bonus Scheme, first introduced in April 2001 and enhanced in August 2004, supports parents’ decision to have more children by helping to ease the financial costs of raising children. The scheme was reviewed again and made more attractive for parents starting from 17th August 2008, with increased benefits. What better way to motivate parents, or rather Singaporean parents than fresh smelling, cold hard cash! Read on to understand the latest enhancements of the baby bonus.
So, What is the Singapore baby bonus?
1. Monetary Gift
You will receive a monetary gift of $4,000 each for your first and second child. For your third and fourth child, you will receive $6,000 each. The money will be given out in four equal installments over 18 months. There are no monetary incentives for the fifth child onwards.
2. Children Development Account (CDA)
The CDA is a special savings account that you open at any OCBC Bank or Standard Chartered Bank branch for your child who is eligible for CDA. You can save in the CDA any time until 31st December in the year the child turns 6 years of age. The savings you contribute to the CDA have a cap of $6,000 each for the first and second child, $12,000 each for the third and fourth child and $18,000 for the fifth child and beyond. The government will match your contribution to the CDA dollar for dollar, for example if you contribute a sum of $5,100 for your first child, the government will top it up with another $5,100 to make it $10,200 in your child’s account.
Benefits of CDA
The savings in the CDA may be used to pay fees for all your children who are attending Approved Institutions registered with MCYS under the Baby Bonus Scheme. These include child care centres, kindergartens & special education schools registered with the Ministry of Education. The CDA savings can also be used to purchase MediShield or Medisave-approved private integrated plans for all your children and pay for all your children’s medical-related expenses. These would include consultation fees, treatment fees and prescription costs incurred at healthcare institutions.
The savings in CDA may be used to pay for all your children, which means savings from your first child’s CDA may be used to pay for your second child’s medical expenses or education. However, the one restriction to take note is that when using the CDA to pay for another child, only children below the age of 6 may use their siblings CDA for their educational needs. Children above 6 can use another child’s CDA for their medical expenses only.