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In what ways does my marital status affect my taxes?

Married couples and civil partners are treated as two independent entities for the purpose of paying tax (though not when it comes to claiming tax credits). Each person is taxed on their own income and gains and has their own allowances. Each is responsible for filling in their own tax return and paying their own tax bills. There is no longer a tax allowance for married couples unless either or both husband and wife were born before 6 April 1935 – this allowance is also available to older civil partners.

However, there are some aspects of the tax system which recognise that husband and wife, or civil partners, are more than just two individuals living together. One is that they can transfer some allowances between them in certain circumstances. Gifts between them don’t normally trigger a capital gains tax or inheritance tax bill. And by sharing their wealth, a couple can each use their tax-free allowances to reduce the amounts paid in tax.

This was taken from the What Investment Guide to Personal Tax by Sara Williams and Oliver Haill which can be downloaded as an e-book from here.

A PDF version of the book can be purchased by contacting Samantha Coles on 020 7250 7039 or