Marriage tax allowance

The marriage allowance has been around since 2015 and is largely thought to be under utilised by couples who could benefit. At one point, HMRC believed almost 3 million couples were missing out on this benefit. In 2021, this allowance could be more beneficial than ever.

Following a pandemic where so many people lost their jobs, families reconsidered childcare options, people retired early and we may have experienced several lockdown baby booms; we believe more couples will fall into the criteria than before.  

Marriage tax allowance explained

This is an allowance that allows you to transfer some of your own personal tax allowance to your wife, husband or civil partner. By doing so, this then increases their taxable allowance, meaning they will pay less tax through the year. 

Marriage allowance eligibility

To be eligible, the following must apply:

  • The lower earner must normally have an income below the standard personal allowance, this is currently £12,570 for 2021/22
  • The higher earner (receiver of the transferred allowance) must be eligible to pay income tax at Basic Rate. This means their income is between £12,571 and £50,270 for 2021/22
  • You are in a civil partnership or married. This does not apply if you are just living together.
  • You are not in receipt of Married Couple’s Allowance (for those born before 1935)

How to claim this allowance

The person who earns the least needs to make the claim and can do so here.

Once you have made the claim, HMRC will either amend your partner’s tax code within 2 months or give them the allowance when they submit their self-assessment tax return. 

A calculator is available to work out how much you may be due Calculate your Married Couple’s Allowance - GOV.UK

Good to know

  • If you need assistance from HMRC, please call the helpline on 0300 200 3300
  • Your claim can be backdated a maximum of 4 years
  • If you or your partner earn less for just 1 year due (maternity leave, unemployment etc) you can claim for that year.
  • If your income changes and you are no longer eligible, you need to cancel the claim as soon as possible here 

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