1. Current rates and allowances

How much Income Tax you pay in each tax year depends on:

  • how much of your income is above your Personal Allowance
  • how much of this falls within each tax band

Some income is tax-free.

The current tax year runs from 6 April 2015 to 5 April 2016.

Your tax-free Personal Allowance

The standard Personal Allowance is £10,600, which is the amount of income you don’t have to pay tax on.

Your Personal Allowance may be bigger if you were born before 6 April 1938 or if you get Blind Person’s Allowance. It’s smaller if your income is over £100,000.

Income Tax rates

Tax rate Taxable income above your Personal Allowance
Basic rate 20% £0 to £31,785
People with the standard Personal Allowance start paying this rate on income over £10,600
Higher rate 40% £31,786 to £150,000
People with the standard Personal Allowance start paying this rate on income over £42,385
Additional rate 45% Over £150,000

Example You have £35,000 of taxable income and you get the standard Personal Allowance of £10,600. You pay basic rate tax at 20% on £24,400 (£35,000 minus £10,600).

Income Tax on savings and dividends

Savings interest is automatically taxed at 20%. If you’re on a low income, you may be able to get tax-free interest or some of the tax back. Higher or additional rate taxpayers will need to pay more tax.

If you own shares in a company and you’re a higher or additional rate taxpayer, you have to pay extra tax on dividends.

Paying less Income Tax

You may be able to claim Income Tax reliefs if you’re eligible for them.

If you’re married or in a civil partnership

You may be able to claim the new Marriage Allowance to reduce your partner’s tax if your income is less than the standard Personal Allowance.

If you don’t claim Marriage Allowance and you or your partner were born before 6 April 1935, you may be able to claim Married Couple’s Allowance.