Government Considers Tax Break For Families With Cleaners And Cooks

Families who hire cleaners, babysitters and cooks could benefit from a new tax break proposal aimed at getting women back to work.

The move, inspired by a Scandinavian ‘maid credit’ law where households are offered substantial domestic help, could help free up time of busy working mums who have to work part-time in order to fit it around their hectic schedules.

The tax-credit style scheme would enable families to hire a cleaner to help with household chores or a nanny and claim back part of the fee from the Government.

The idea behind the scheme is that it will lessen the burden of childcare and domestic duties for women so they can return to work after they’ve had a baby.

David Cameron expressed his interest in the scheme during a recent trip to Stockholm and said during the Nordic-Baltic summit, "I was interested in Sweden’s experience in encouraging and helping women go out to work," as reported by the Guardian.

He also said: "What you do in Sweden in terms of tax help and tax relief, not so much on child care but on other things that help women go out to work, I thought that was a very interesting idea that I want to look at further," the Telegraph reports.

The Government also added that this scheme could cut the number of illegal worker working cash in hand as they would have to be declared 'on the books'.

Specific services eligible for the tax breaks under the Swedish law include cleaning, cooking, childcare and cooking.

Although the Government is under pressure to offer more support to working families, the decision to offer tax breaks to middle-class families while tax credits cuts are squeezing the poor.

"This demonstrates how out of touch David Cameron is about the pressures facing women in this country.

"He is suggesting tax breaks for people who can afford domestic workers at the same time as he is cutting tax credits for working parents and removing child benefit from squeezed families," a Labour spokesperson has said, according to the Telegraph.

"Is this what he means when he says we are all in it together?"

David Cameron has already been under scrutiny for cutting child tax credits and announcing the abolishment of child benefit for families who are in the higher-tax bracket.