1. Married couples can share tax credits if one person earns less than the other. You can be taxed as one unit and allowed some tax concessions not used by one spouse to be transferred to the other. The standard tax cut-off point is €44,300 for a married couple (€35,300 if your single/co-habiting). If both partners are working you can earn up to €70,600 on the lower tax rate – €44,300 + €26,300.
2. Spouses don’t pay inheritance tax. By making a will a spouse can ensure their assets are left to their wife/husband without any tax implications.
3. When a spouse dies, irrespective of a will or the deceased person’s wishes their spouse has a legal right to one-third of their estate. Co-habiting couples have no automatic rights to a share in their partner’s estate. They must be named specifically in a will to inherit and may be liable for inheritance tax.
4. Spouses can gift each other money with limited tax consequences. If you are married you can transfer gains between spouses and even offset the losses of one against the profit of the other. This is not applicable to co-habiting couples.
5. Pension benefits can be transferred to spouses. If a person dies before retiring, a spouse is entitled to death-in-service benefits from the pension pot, and if the spouse has already retired then a pension can be paid to the survivor depending on the particular scheme, so make sure you speak to your financial adviser.
6. Married couples don’t have to pay stamp duty when they transfer assets from one to another and are not subject to capital gains tax.
7. If you are self-employed or run your own business you can reduce your tax bill by employing your spouse and share tax credits. If the company funds a pension for you and your spouse it can result in significant income tax savings for you and the company.
If you would like to find out more about the wide range of financial services we can offer, give us a shout today on 064 66 37393, email firstname.lastname@example.org or drop by our office today. We’ll be delighted to help.