1. Overview

Income Tax is a tax you pay on your income. You don’t have to pay tax on all types of income.

You pay tax on things like:

  • money you earn from employment
  • profits you make if you’re self-employed
  • some state benefits
  • most pensions, including state pensions, company and personal pensions and retirement annuities
  • interest on savings and pensioner bonds
  • rental income (unless you’re a live-in landlord and get £4,250 or less)
  • benefits you get from your job
  • income from a trust
  • dividends from company shares

You don’t pay tax on things like:

  • income from tax-exempt accounts, like Individual Savings Accounts (ISAs) and National Savings Certificates
  • some state benefits
  • premium bond or National Lottery wins
  • the first £4,250 of rent you get from a lodger in your home

Income Tax allowances and reliefs

Most people in the UK get a ‘Personal Allowance’ of tax-free income. This is the amount of income you can have before you pay tax.

The amount of tax you pay can also be reduced by tax reliefs if you qualify for them.

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