I got £1,000 cheque in the post thanks to 'no brainer' Martin Lewis tip – how you can too | The Sun

A MARTIN Lewis fan managed to make an extra £1,000 thanks to a "no brainer" tip.

It was revealed on the latest episode of BBC's The Martin Lewis Podcast as the consumer expert explained the rules of marriage allowance.

Couples who are married or in a civil partnership can claim marriage allowance. It's where one person earns less than the personal allowance threshold of £12,570.

If you're claiming marriage allowance, you can transfer £1,260 of your personal allowance to your partner, reducing their tax by up to £252.

One saver, known as Andrea, backdated her claims by four years to receive an extra £1,000. The tax break was worth £238, £250, £250 and £252 during those years respectively, meaning you could get up to £1,242 in total.

In an email she sent to Mr Lewis, she said: "Big thank you. My husband hasn't used all his personal allowance in the last four years so he applied for the marriage allowance one Saturday, and the following Saturday received a cheque for £1,000.

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"And my tax code has been adjusted."

Mr Lewis then replied: "It can be that quick. This is real, serious money."

He says up to 2.1million couples are missing out on marriage allowance right now, so it's imperative you check what you're owed.

Keep in mind you can only backdate it by as far as four years.

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You need to act now get the amount from 2018/19 though – you have until April 5 this year.

Once you've claimed you won't need to apply again, but you should let HMRC know if you stop being eligible.

Who is eligible for marriage allowance?

You'll only be eligible if the following applies to you:

  • you’re married or in a civil partnership
  • you do not pay income tax or your income is below your personal allowance (usually £12,570)
  • your partner pays income tax at the basic rate, which usually means their income is between £12,571 and £50,270 before they receive marriage allowance

It won't count if you only live with your partner or have children together – you need to be married or in a civil partnership.

You can backdate your claim to include any tax year since April 5, 2018 that you were eligible for marriage allowance.

Your partner’s tax bill will be reduced depending on the personal allowance rate for the years you’re backdating.

To work out how much you will get you can use the government's marriage allowance calculator.

How can I apply for marriage allowance?

Just pop onto the government's website to apply online.

The person who earns the least needs to make the claim, granted you both earn no income other than your wages.

If either member of the couple gets other income, such as dividends or savings, you can call the Income Tax helpline to work out who should claim.

HMRC will then give the allowance you've transferred to your partner by changing their tax code or when they've sent their self assessment tax return.

But don't worry if it doesn't happen straight away – it can take roughly two months for your tax code to change.

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If your new Personal Allowance is lower than your income after you’ve made a claim, you might have to pay some income tax. However, you might still benefit as a couple.

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