National Insurance

Budget 2016

Tomorrow, the Chancellor of the Exchequer will deliver his annual budget to the Houses of Parliament. We have already heard about some possible announcements (such as the introduction of a scheme to help people increase their savings), and we have been told that there will be no changes to pension tax relief (which looked likely, for a while).

From 6th April, the new tax year means changes to tax-free personal allowances, tax thresholds and the like. The Salary Calculator has been updated with the latest values so you can see what your payslip will look like from April onwards. The personal allowance has been increased to £11,000 per year, which will reduce the tax due for most people. There are changes to National Insurance this year, too – since it is no longer possible for a pension to be “contracted-out” (earning a reduction in NI contributions), those of you who had one of these pensions will be paying the full NI contributions from 6th April.

If you would like to see how these changes will affect you, head over to The Salary Calculator to see what difference it will make to your payslip!

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None of the content on this website, including blog posts, comments, or responses to user comments, is offered as financial advice. Figures used are for illustrative purposes only.

General Election Salary Calculator

As you may have noticed, there’s a General Election next month and the parties are all out campaigning. Since a major campaign point this time is personal taxation, I thought it would be interesting to compare how the main parties’ policies would affect take-home pay. You can try out the Election Salary Calculator here. This is a simplified version of the normal Salary Calculator, but if you enter your salary and a few other optional extras, it will estimate the differences in deductions for the 5 main national parties.

This is just an estimate, and not all of the details are available yet – I will update the calculator with more information as the parties provide it. I hope you find it interesting! Details of the changes are described below the results table. The BBC has a very good article explaining the parties’ positions on taxation and other policy areas.

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April 2015 tax rates applied

From 6th April 2015, new tax thresholds and personal allowances will apply, and The Salary Calculator has been updated with these new values.

Although the default results are still for the current tax year, when you enter your details into the take home pay calculator, you will see a summary line at the bottom of the results showing how things will change from 6th April. Click on this line and you can see a side-by-side comparison of the 2014/15 and 2015/16 tax years, and a breakdown of how it will affect your take home pay. You can also choose 2015/16 in the tax year drop-down in the normal take home calculator.

The main change this year is an increase in the default personal allowance from £10,000 to £10,600 – which means you can earn an extra £600 without paying any income tax. The default tax code will change from 1000L to 1060L (if your tax code is different, it will probably change for next year to reflect the larger personal allowance). The Student Loan repayment threshold has also increased from £16,910 to £17,335, potentially saving those who are repaying their loans £38.25 per month (although this will also mean it takes longer to repay your loan).

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April 2014 tax rates applied

The Salary Calculator has been updated with the latest tax information which takes effect from 6th April 2014.

There is an increase in the default tax free personal allowance from £9,440 to £10,000, which will reduce the amount of tax due for most taxpayers. Slight increases in the National Insurance thresholds will also help improve the takehome pay for many people.

The most significant change is probably the increase in the repayment threshold for plan 1 student loans from £16,365 per year to £16,910, which will save those repaying their loan nearly £50 over the year. Unfortunately of course, this will just mean it will take longer to repay the loan in the long run but hopefully the extra cash in your pocket will be useful now!

Another significant change this year, which is unlikely to affect any but those who are well paid and nearing retirement, is a reduction in the maximum amount you can put into a pension while still claiming full tax relief – for 2013/14 this limit was £50,000 but from 2014/15 it will be £40,000. If this is likely to affect you, you still have time to make the most of the 2013/14 pension allowance before the end of the tax year!

To see how you will be affected by the new tax rates, go to The Salary Calculator and choose the 2014/15 tax year from the drop-down box. Alternatively, you can view a side-by-side comparison of 2013 and 2014 tax rates.

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Bonus pay periods

Prompted by a comment from Rob on the original blog post, back from when support for bonus payments was added to The Salary Calculator (original post here), The Salary Calculator has been updated so that you can choose your normal pay period when you enter a bonus. Previously, the calculator assumed that you were paid on a monthly basis, and displayed a normal monthly payslip alongside a payslip including the bonus. Now, you can choose whether you are paid monthly, 4-weekly, 2-weekly or weekly and see a side-by-side comparison of a normal payslip with one including your bonus.

It’s important to note that your employer may not perform their bonus calculations in the same way – sometimes (particularly near the start of the tax year) you may have more tax and NI deducted than predicted by the calculator. Normally these over-deductions are corrected in subsequent payslips.

Head this way for the Salary Calculator with bonus payments!

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