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Marriage Allowance

  • 2 min read

The Marriage Allowance is a UK government scheme. It’s available to couples who are married or in a civil partnership. It allows one low earner to transfer a sum of their Personal Allowance to their partner.

How does the Marriage Allowance work?

The Marriage Allowance works by giving low-income married couples or civil partners income tax relief. The low earner can send up to £1,260 of their Personal Allowance to their husband, wife or spouse.

The higher-earning partner then receives a tax credit. It’s equivalent to the amount of personal allowance that has been transferred to them. This is then deducted from the amount of tax they would usually pay.

Basically, this means you’re able to transfer 10% of your tax-free Personal Allowance to your spouse or partner. You do this if you earn less than the current Personal Allowance (£12,570) and they’re a basic rate taxpayer (they make between £12,571-£50,270). This can reduce their tax bill by up to £270 over the year.

Who is eligible?

To be eligible for the Marriage Allowance:

  • You must be married or in a civil partnership
  • Either you or your partner must not pay Income Tax or have an income below your Personal Allowance
  • Either you or your partner must pay Income Tax at the basic rate, which usually means your income is between £12,571 and £50,270

If you live with your partner, but you’re not married or in a civil partnership, you’re not eligible for the Marriage Allowance.

How can I apply?

It’s easy to apply for Marriage Allowance as it’s all done online through HMRC’s website. If both you and your partner have no income other than your wages, whoever who earns the least makes the claim. If either of you has other sources of income, you might need to work out who’s in a better position to claim.

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