Can I Get and ISA with My Partner?

POSTED ON Friday, 06 November, 2020

Lots of couples choose to consolidate their finances into one shared account which they can easily access and both keep track of. But how does this work in an ISA type? We’ve got all you need to know, so you and your partner can make informed, strong financial decisions. 

It doesn’t sound very romantic – but the combining of finances is an important part of relationships and is often one of the Big Discussions a couple has while moving forward.

So how do ISAs factor in?

One of the most common questions according to our research is whether or not you can get a joint ISA with your partner – so we’ve decided to answer it for you.

Can I open a joint ISA?

The short answer is no.

ISAs can only be held in one name – you cannot open a joint ISA or open an ISA in someone else’s name (with the obvious exception of a JISA).

The tax benefits which are available through ISA accounts are only available for individual people

Each individual who is a resident in the UK has a yearly allowance – this year, of £20,000 per tax year – which is non-transferable; you cannot share an allowance or combine allowances.

The only instance in which ISA allowances can be transferred is the instance where a spouse or civil partner has passed away and has left the ISA to their spouse in their will or as part of their estate. But obviously, this is not the ideal situation and would preferably be avoided.

You can open alternative savings accounts as a couple – however, these will not have the tax-free benefits you can expect to enjoy through an ISA.

So, how can we make ISAs work for us as a couple?

There is a bright side to this rule – you can, theoretically, make more savings. If you both put your pennies to work in the right ISAs, and share the profits, you can put your joint finances in a really strong position.

You can also, if you are combining your funds, be flexible with where you keep your funds – by choosing different kinds of ISAs with different kinds of access and benefits, you can maximise your returns.

Lifetime ISAs:

One of the reasons people tend to look to have a joint accounts is to save for a home together. By both of you opening a LISA account, you can both gain the generous bonus offered by LISAs.

As two LISAs can be used to fund a house deposit, you can both maximise your returns in order to boost both your deposit savings – and afterwards, for your deposit. You can see selected lifetime ISA providers here.

Instant Access Cash ISA:

By putting some of your pennies into an Instant Access Cash ISA, you can (as the name would suggest) maintain access to your cash. Some ISAs lock your funds away, but by choosing to open an Instant Access Cash ISA in one of your names, then you can know that you have access to funds should a rainy day happen.

Investment ISA:

By holding two (or more) different ISAs you can really easily diversify your investment portfolio, meaning you could have lots of fingers in different pies. This can make your investments a bit more secure theoretically – if all your eggs are in different baskets, then should there be a big issue with one basket, you’ll still have some returns from your other investments to rely on. 

Read more about Lifetime ISAs.

Read more about Instant Access Cash ISA.

Read more about Investment ISAs.