Claiming the tax-free marriage allowance

marriage allowance

Here’s how to claim the tax-free marriage allowance

We’re seeing confusion and mistakes made over claiming the marriage allowance, resulting in couples missing out on potentially claiming over £1,000 and then paying professional fees to correct the issue.

Since 6 April 2015, unused personal allowance can be transferred between spouses and civil partners where neither is a higher rate taxpayer. This amount is known as the marriage allowance.

The Rules:

  • The transferor must have income below the PA (currently £12,500) or should not pay income tax
  • The recipient of the unused PA should not be a higher rate taxpayer (i.e. they should pay tax at 20%)
  • The personal giving up their PA must make the ‘claim’, either online or by phone
  • Both parties must meet the criteria in order to transfer the PA


How much is the marriage allowance worth?

In the current tax year, up to £1,250 can be transferred across and added to the basic rate taxpayer’s PA, resulting in an extra tax saving of up to £250 (£1,250 @ 20%).

Can I claim marriage allowance for previous periods?

Good news – yes! You can claim for any tax year since 6 April 2015 providing you both satisfy the criteria. Your refund could be worth more than £1,000.

How does this differ from the Married Couples Allowance?

If one of you was born before 6th April 1935, you may qualify for the MCA which provides even more in tax savings.

Tax is always changing and we’re here to help you get it right, whilst ensuring you’re optimising your tax position. If you’d like advice on your current position or are thinking about making some changes, we’re well placed to help you. Please get in touch to speak with our tax team and find out how we can help improve your personal tax.

HMRC details for claiming