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Still time to register for marriage allowance

Still time to register for the Marriage Allowance

14 March 2024

The UK’s Marriage Allowance allows lower earners to transfer part of their tax-free allowance to their spouse, potentially saving up to £252 annually. Unclaimed allowances can be backdated to April 2019, potentially resulting in a £1,256 tax break.

You can still register for the marriage allowance before the current tax year ends on 5 April 2024. The marriage allowance is for married couples and civil partners where one partner does not pay tax or pays tax below the basic rate threshold for Income Tax. That means one of the partners must earn less than the £12,570 personal allowance for 2023-24. HMRC states that March is the peak month for marriage allowance applications, with nearly 70,000 couples applying last March.

The lower earning partner can transfer up to £1,260 of their personal tax-free allowance to their spouse or civil partner. This is possible only when the recipient (the higher earning partner) pays no more than the basic 20% rate of income tax. Typically, their income would be between £12,571 and £50,270 during 2023-24.

For those in Scotland, this typically means income between £12,571 and £43,662.

By using the allowance, the lower earning partner can transfer up to £1,260 of their unused personal tax-free allowance. This could save the recipient up to £252 (20% of £1,260), or £21 a month for the current tax year.

If you’re eligible and haven’t claimed the allowance yet, you can backdate your claim to 6 April 2019. This could give you a total tax break of up to £1,256 if you claim for 2019-20, 2020-21, 2021-22, 2022-23, and the current 2023-24 tax year. If you claim now, you can backdate your claim for four years (if eligible) and for the current tax year.

HMRC’s online Marriage Allowance calculator can be used by couples to find out if they are eligible for the relief. An application to register for the marriage allowance can then be made online at GOV.UK.

Source: HM Revenue & Customs Tue, 12 Mar 2024 00:00:00 +0100

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