Reader Q: My husband and I never paid income tax after he retired but since he died I have – Why?

1 min Read Published: 03 Oct 2011

Get an answer to your financial question online Reader Question:

I am 86 years old, my husband and I never paid income tax after he retired but since he died I have. Firstly my Code was 77T, now it's changed to 31T. My income is just £178.52p over my tax allowance of £10,090.

Should I be paying tax ?

Thank you

My response:

It appears that your tax code has been changed to reflect your recent change in circumstances. Your tax code changing from 77T to 31T indicates that HMRC believe your tax free personal allowance needs to be reduced (ie you should be paying more tax on the income associated with this tax code). This may be because they believe you have used part of your tax free personal allowance elsewhere on another source of income. Have you got more than one source of income? But interestingly the letter T at the end of your tax code is slightly unusual and would only usually be given to you '' if there are any other items that HMRC need to review in your tax code, for example the income-related reduction to the Personal Allowance''

So the question becomes not whether you should be paying tax but whether your tax code is correct. Once you are sure that it is then it should follow that you pay the correct amount of tax.

As I do not know your full circumstance and sources of income I can not tell you whether your tax code is correct. The best way to find this out is to call HMRC on 0845 302 1443 (choose option 1) to get your tax code checked by them.

It is not unusual for HMRC to get a tax code wrong!

Best Wishes


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