Marriage allowance - guide your employees in the right direction

The Marriage Allowance lets certain individuals transfer 10% of their personal allowance to their spouse or civil partner. This reduces the tax bill of the recipient of the transfer by up to £212 in 2015/16. The main scenario in which the transfer is allowed and worthwhile is where:

  • one of the spouses has little income and is therefore not using the personal allowance
  • the other spouse does not pay tax at the higher or additional rate.

The default route for applying is online. If you are an employer, it is a good idea to signpost your employees to This link gives full information as to eligibility, how to apply and a link to the online application.

As we get towards the end of the tax year, couples may have a better idea as to whether they qualify. If a successful application is made, changes to the personal allowances are backdated to 6 April 2015. In future years the personal allowance will transfer automatically to the spouse until either of the couple cancels the Marriage Allowance or there is a change in circumstances.