Prime Minister to announce tax break for married couples

It is thought that David Cameron could publish plans to introduce a tax break for married couples as early as November. Senior Downing Street sources have suggested that the Prime Minister will announce a new married couple tax break within six months and that he is planning on discounting Chancellor George Osborne’s advice not to introduce any tax breaks for the married this soon. The Prime Minister himself has confirmed that he will definitely recognise marriage in the tax system before the general election in 2015.

When the coalition came to power three years ago, a pledge was made to recognise marriage in the tax system but so far nothing to fulfill this pledge has been included by George Osborne in any of his budgets or autumn statements. An official from Downing Street has said that Cameron’s plans to create measures to recognise marriage, in the form of providing married couples with a tax break, will be announced in the Chancellor’s next statement in November.

The Prime Minister is thought to have been advised by Tory MPs and Cabinet Ministers, including Iain Duncan Smith, not to wait any later than the end of this year to introduce the marriage tax relief measures. This way, the Government’s promise to be the most family friendly ever will be reinforced. It is widely thought that this strategy is being suggested in order to appease Conservative voters who may not have agreed with the introduction of gay marriage. And to win over stay-at-home mothers who will not benefit from the introduction of new state support with childcare bills.

The exact details of Cameron’s plan for marriage tax breaks have not yet been made known. Many are presuming that the tax change will be similar to the plans the Conservatives had in place before the 2010 general election .The manifesto from the Conservatives at that time proposed a transferable tax allowance that would apply to all married couples – and gay couples in civil partnerships – who pay the basic rate of income tax.

If this system is to come into play, one party of a married couple who is not using all of their tax-free personal allowance, either because they stay at home or work part-time and earn less than the threshold for basic rate income tax, would be able to transfer £750 of their benefit to their working partner.

An eligible couple, that is a married couple where one partner is not using all the tax-free personal allowance and the other earns up to £44,000, would be up to £150 a year better off if this tax break is introduced.