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Married Couple's Allowance

Married Couple's Allowance 2017/18

The Married Couple's Allowance is a tax perk for qualifying couples where one partner is over the age of 82. MCA is a 'restricted allowance' that could cut 10% off your yearly tax bill.

MCA GUIDE: Married Couple's Allowance rules do not increase the tax threshold. But, MCA could reduce the amount of taxation elderly couples pay each year.

In short, it must be a husband and wife relationship or a couple living in a registered civil partnership. Qualification would then depend on one partner being born before the 6th of April 1935.

MCA has allowance restrictions for tax purposes. That means it does not increase the total amount you can earn before you start paying Income Tax. But, it would reduce the total bill by 10 per cent of the allowance that you have entitlement for.

The age-related rules of Married Couple's Allowance depend most on the date you married or started living as civil partners. The next determining factor is the age of the eldest member.

The income of the husband determines MCA rates in marriages taking place before the 5th of December 2005. But, the highest earner's income gets used for marriage and civil partnerships after this cut-off date.

Note: Partners born on or after the 6th of April 1935 may qualify to claim Marriage Tax Allowance instead.

Married Couple's Allowance Rates

These are the current Married Couple's Allowance rates for the 2017 to 2018 tax year. The concession could make your tax bill smaller by an amount between £326 and £844.50 per year.

The allowance comes on a pro-rata basis once you marry or register the civil partnership. It would be available for the rest of that particular tax year.

But, if one partner dies or you get divorced or separated, the allowance still continues to the end of the tax year. That also applies if spouses or civil partners separate through circumstance other than a formal decision.

Married Couple's Allowance Eligibility Criteria

Claiming the Married Couple’s Allowance 2017/18 could lessen the tax charge by £326 up to £844.50 each year. To claim MCA all these 3 rules must apply to your situation:

  1. You and your spouse are in fact married or you live together in a civil partnership.
  2. You continue to live with your spouse or civil partner while you claim MCA.
  3. At least one of you were born before Saturday the 6th of April 1935.

Eligibility to claim Married Couple's Allowance applies even when partners cannot live together. Reasons for being unable to live as regular partners can include:

Note: MCA is transferable to your spousal, or civil, partner. The online Married Couple's Allowance Calculator works out whether you are eligible and qualify to claim extra MCA from your tax bill.

How to Claim Married Couple's Allowance

Those who complete the Self Assessment process can claim by filling in the Married Couple's Allowance section of their tax return.

Claimants who do not fill in a Self Assessment tax return should contact HM Revenue and Customs. Supply them with:

Transfer Unused Married Couple's Allowance

Married Couple's Allowance rules allow the transfer of savings at the end of the tax year. Transferring unused allowances is of benefit to those who do not pay income tax or their bill is not considered high enough.

You can also share or transfer the Married Couple's Allowance before the tax year begins. That means either partner can:

Use 'Form 18: Transferring the Married Couple's Allowance' at the beginning of the tax year. HM Revenue and Customs can also mail a copy of form 18 to you.

Tax Allowances: Giving Money to Charity

Some taxpayers choose to give money to a charity in the United Kingdom using Gift Aid. In this case you should contact HM Revenue and Customs. Those who were born before the 6th of April 1938 may get extra income tax allowances.

Married Couple's Allowance with Rates for Elderly Married Couples and Civil Partnerships