HMRC has reviewed and updated the ways that tax breaks are claimed for with regards married couples. We look at why they are doing this and also what your options are.

What is The Marriage Allowance

The Marriage Allowance lets you transfer money to your husband, wife or civil partner – if they earn more than you. This reduces their tax in that tax year. To benefit as a couple, the lower earner must have an income of £11,000 or less. You can get an assessment off what you can save by going to the website by clicking here.

At present, the Marriage Allowance allows a spouse (or civil partner) to transfer 10% of their personal allowance to their partner providing they earn less than the personal allowance and they do not pay higher rate tax. Previously this allowance has only been available online but HMRC has now accepted that it can be claimed by telephone in order to make applying easier.

The reason that HMRC are reviewing this allowance is because many couples are missing out on the allowance. In fact the government thinks that the figure is over 4 million people.

Who Can apply

You can get Marriage Allowance if all the following apply:

  • you’re married or in a civil partnership
  • you don’t earn anything or your income is under £11,000
  • your partner’s income is between £11,001 and £43,000

You can still apply for Marriage Allowance if you or your partner:

  • are currently receiving a pension
  • live abroad – as long as you get a Personal Allowance.


If you or your partner were born before 6 April 1935, you might benefit more as a couple by applying for Married Couple’s Allowance instead.

Need to Chat?

As always, the information above is just a guideline to help you  see if you can benefit from this particular allowance. If you are in any doubt or need additional help, please call HMRC direct on 0300 200 3300.