A time to shine

  • To learn about one’s tax allowances
  • To learn about Isas
  • To learn about pension tax planning
A time to shine


Every first quarter of the year, advisers get together with their clients to discuss their tax planning issues. The run-up to April is always the busiest time of year, and the earlier advisers can get the tax affairs of their clients in order, the better.

There are many issues to think about, and any initial tax planning should consider a client's basic allowances, ensuring that one has taken full advantage of the capital gains tax allowance.

Connected to making use of one's allowances is ensuring the use of the annual Isa allowance, which this year is £15,240. For active Isa investors, who choose to invest some or all of their allowance in a stocks and shares Isa, there are plenty of funds to choose from. The period of February and March, is usually associated with the Isa season and according to evidence from Isa brokerages, income funds are high on investors' lists, with Woodford Equity Income coming top of the list.

Advisers should be aware of the new Lifetime Isa being launched at the start of the new tax year, which allows people to save for a property deposit, with attached tax relief, as well as save for a pension. however, some have questioned whether this is really such a good idea, and over the long-term whether this is the best way to save for a pension.

Pensions are also subject to a certain degree of planning, and the end of the tax year is the time to make sure one is making the best use of the available allowances. The annual allowance for making pension contributions is £40,000 although from April next year, the government is introducing a tapered allowance, starting from £10,000.

For anyone in danger of going over their annual allowance, they are able to make use of the carry forward rules, if there is unused allowance from a previous year. However, if the pensioner in question has accessed their pension fund under pension freedoms, then the annual allowance is cut back to £10,000 and the carry forward rules do not apply.

All in all, tax planning is one of the most obvious ways an adviser makes him or herself useful to clients, so it is advantageous to make the best use of it.

Melanie Tringham is features editor of Financial Adviser

In this guide


Please answer the six multiple choice questions below in order to bank your CPD. Multiple attempts are available until all questions are correctly answered.

  1. According to Victoria Groves, what is the maximum available bonus for a Help to Buy Isa?

  2. According to Victoria Groves, what is the maximum bonus for a Lifetime Isa?

  3. According to Patrick Connolly the survivor of a marriage or civil partnership can claim up to 100 per cent of their partner’s nil rate in addition to their own entitlement, providing an allowance of up to £650,000. True or false?

  4. According to Dawn Register, what is the full CGT allowance for 2015/16?

  5. According to Darius McDermott, what is the most popular Isa fund with clients?

  6. According to Phil Carroll, when will the annual allowance taper rules apply?

Nearly There…

You have successfully answered all the questions correctly, well done!

You should now know…

  • To learn about one’s tax allowances
  • To learn about Isas
  • To learn about pension tax planning

I completed this CPD in

To bank your CPD please complete the form below.

Were the stated learning objectives met?

Why weren't they met?

What did you learn from undertaking this CPD exercise?

Why did you undertake this piece of learning?

Any comments about this article or FTAdviser's CPD in general?


Congratulations, you have successfully completed and banked this piece of CPD

Already Banked!

You have already banked for this article.

To bank your CPD you must sign in or


One or more questions have been incorrectly answered,
 please review your answers and try again.

Please complete all the above text fields to bank your CPD.

More Pensions CPDSee my completed CPDSee all CPD