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Pension Tax Relief calculator

Calculate how much tax relief your pension provider should get you. And see how much additional tax relief you can claim from HMRC.

Your situation

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What pension scheme is your employer using?
Your annual income
Pension contributions


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  • Pension contributions
  • Automatic tax relief
  • Extra tax relief you can claim

How your pension tax relief is calculated

HMRC will basically give you back the tax that you paid on the income that you used for your pension contribution.

In your case you earned £49,000 and contributed £1,000 to your pension.

Automatic Tax relief

You get £250

Your pension provider will automatically get this for you and add it to your pension pot.

Your pension pot will now be worth £1,250.

What is the Private Pension Tax Relief?

First things first, what’s a private pension? It’s basically a savings scheme that you pay into for when you retire. However, unlike the state pension which you pay into automatically through National Insurance when you’re employed, you set up a private pension, also called a personal pension, independently of this.

You can set something up with a private pension provider like our partners over at Penfold and Guiide 💪

Having a private pension is especially important for anyone who is self-employed and may only be relying on their state pension for retirement income. Check out our guide on the top pension hacks for freelancers for more on this. 

But back onto the tax relief.

When you pay into a private pension, the government will pay you the tax you paid on your contribution in the form of a tax relief. 

Wait, how does that work?

When your pension contribution is deducted from your salary after tax has been calculated, one of two things will happen:

  1. Basic rate taxpayers – HMRC will pay you 20% of your contribution automatically
  2. Higher and additional rate taxpayers – you need to do a tax return to claim your tax relief

As a basic rate taxpayer, your pension provider will claim the 20% for you and pay it into your pension pot.

How much can you claim?

You can put up to £60,000 a year into your private pension. 

When you earn more than £50,000 per year, you can claim an additional tax relief (either an extra 20% for higher rate taxpayers or 25% for additional rate taxpayers) to be paid into your pension pot. You should do this by filing a tax return. 

But if you earn more than £100,000, your annual allowance will be reduced. Also be aware that when you contribute more than your annual allowance into your pension, you will have to pay back some of your automatic tax relief. 

Side note: is a private pension the same thing as a personal pension?

Why yes, yes it is! 

Private and personal pensions are the same thing. They are independent of workplace pensions and are set up by you as opposed to your employer at a company. You can also have both a workplace pension and a personal pension at the same time. 

What does the Pension Tax Relief Calculator show me?

By using our calculator, you can work out how much tax relief you’re entitled to and whether or not you need to file a tax return to claim it.

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