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The three main options for people wishing to invest in a highly tax efficient manner - and reduce their tax bills - are  SIPPS/Pensions, ISAs & GIAs (General investment Accounts). Below we provide an overview of the tax treatment of each account.



ISAs, or Individual Savings Accounts, offer completely tax free investing and withdrawals. There are two main typyes of ISA, Stocks & Shares ISAs and Cash ISAs, plus additional subsets (Junior ISAs, Lifetime ISAs, Innovative ISAs).

You pay income tax as normal on any money you place into an ISA, but there is no tax at all on any growth, income or withdrawals.


SIPPS, or Self Invested Personal Pensions, offer a full rebate of your income tax on money invested. The terms are often confused, but all SIPPs are Pensions and today most pensions are SIPPs, in that they offer you a degree of investment choice.

You don't pay income tax on money you place into a Pension/SIPP and there is no tax at all on any internal growth or income. 25% of withdrawals are tax free with the balance taxed as income. Pensions & SIPPs also sit outside of your estate for IHT.

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GIAs, or General Investment Accounts, are standard taxable investment accounts. You pay income tax as normal on any money going in and on any income generated. There is also Capital Gains Tax on any growth, payable when taken.

You can use (where available) your income tax and particularly your capital gains tax allowances to offset against these, but the use of your ISA & Pension/SIPP allowances first is simpler.

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Minimum:    None

Maximum:   £20,000 a year

Lifetime:      None

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Minimum:    None

Maximum:   £40,000 a year

Lifetime:      £1,073,100

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Minimum:    None

Maximum:   None

Lifetime:      None


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