Claim and take full advantage of all allowances
Transfer allowances between husband and wife if
claim for transferring the married couple's allowance from
husband to wife must be submitted before the start of the
tax year in which it is to operate.
Married couples should ensure that they are
taking full advantage of independent taxation opportunities by
putting some assets or investments into joint names, or
transferring them to each other.
This can also be beneficial in planning for inheritance
Review mortgage facilities to ensure you are
getting the best rates, and consider in particular pension
mortgages and mortgages coupled to a PEP scheme and a life
Claim each year to apportion mortgage interest
between husband and wife to your best advantage.
Make additional pension payments, particularly
if you pay tax at higher rates.
If your income is low, particularly if you are a
pensioner receiving only State pension, ensure that any
interest from savings is paid to you without tax being
deducted, especially from building societies or banks.
To reduce your tax bill allocate part of your
savings to National Savings Certificates, PEPs and TESSAS.
Encourage your employer to provide fringe
benefits which avoid tax or NIC such as interest free loans up
Deeds of covenant and other charitable schemes
can be a cheap way to help charities, for they are able to
reclaim the tax. Check,
however, that you have taxed income out of which to pay them.
Consider investing surplus savings in an
unquoted company under the Enterprise Investment Scheme or a
Venture Capital Trust in order to save tax at 20 per cent.
If you have a company car with a high annual
mileage, ensure that you cover at least 18,000 business miles
before the end of the tax year in order to claim a reduced
benefit-in-kind tax bill.
Consider asking your employer to set up a
'profit related pay' scheme which can avoid tax on up to £4,000
If you are involved in divorce or separation
proceedings, ensure that any settlement takes full advantages
of tax relief - voluntary arrangements are outside the scope
of the tax system.
Ensure that you have made a Will; review it
annually and consider whether you can afford to leave up to £200,000
to relatives, other than your wife or husband, to take full
advantage of inheritance tax exemptions.
Consider realising any gains in order to use the
£6,300 annual exemption; where this limit has been fully used
postpone taking gains until the next tax year, or conversely,
realise losses to reduce the gains under the exemption limit,
possibly buying back the shares the next day.
Claim losses on assets that have become worthless.
If you have a personal or company pension and
are about to retire, shop around for the best pension rates -
don't automatically stay with your existing insurance company.
Also consider taking advantage of the new provisions
for deferring purchasing an annuity.
If resources permit, make exempt gifts before
the end of the tax year to reduce any potential inheritance
If you are in business, buy new equipment at the
end of an accounting period rather than at the beginning of
the next. You
will be able to claim capital allowances a year earlier.