The value of your investments can go down as well as up and you may get back less than you paid in. Laws and tax rules may change in the future. Your own circumstances also have an impact on tax treatment.

What is the ISA allowance?

It’s the limit on how much money you can save and invest through Individual Savings Accounts (ISAs) in a single tax year. The ISA allowance for the 2020/2021 tax year is £20,000

This means you can save a total of £20,000 into one Cash ISA, or Stocks & Shares ISA or one innovative ISA (or £4,000 into one Lifetime ISA) in a single tax year. You can even spread your allowance across different types of ISA if you like.

If you’re unsure about what an ISA is or just want to know the basics of how they work, you can read our ‘What is an ISA?’ guide for more helpful information.

What is an ISA?

What happens if I go over the ISA allowance?

If you make a subscription into your ISA and exceed the ISA allowance, the ISA manager will remove the over-subscription from your ISA.

How do ISA withdrawals work?

You can take your money out of an ISA at any time, without losing any tax benefits. Check the terms of your ISA to see if there are any rules or charges for making withdrawals and keep in mind that taking money out can affect the return you receive on investments.

It’s also worth remembering that your ISA allowance doesn’t roll over into the next tax year. Some ISA managers may also not allow you to replace a withdrawal you have made from your ISA in the same tax year.

Please check with your ISA manager for more information.

How many ISAs can you have?

As many as you like, but there are a few rules to keep in mind.

You can only open one of each ISA type in the same tax year. For example, you can’t open two Stocks & Shares ISAs in a tax year, but you could open one Stocks & Shares ISA and one Cash ISA.

In a single tax year, you can either save your full ISA allowance into one ISA type or spread it across multiple ISAs. For example, you could save £10,000 into a Stocks & Shares ISA and £10,000 into a Cash ISA.

Unsure about what type of ISA is right for you? Our guide breaks them down so you can compare.

Finding the right ISA

ISA tax and charges

ISAs are tax-efficient ways to save and invest money. For example, money saved into a Cash ISA may grow over time thanks to interest and you don’t pay any tax on that growth.

With a Stocks & Shares ISA, you don’t pay tax on any value gained if your investments perform well. You also won’t be taxed when you sell the investments.

While ISAs are tax-efficient, some ISA types do come with charges. You typically don’t have to pay a charge to have a Cash ISA, but you might have to pay charges if you take money out early from a fixed-term investment or transfer your money from one ISA to another.

Stocks & Shares ISAs do have regular overall charges. These typically cover things like online support, access to fund ranges, free withdrawals and more.

Find out about the charges that apply to the Standard Life Stocks & Shares ISA:

Our Stocks & Shares ISA

What happens to your ISA when you die?

This depends on your provider. With the Standard Life Stocks & Shares ISA, your spouse or civil partner can inherit your ISA tax benefits if you die. It means that they’ll inherit your ISA and its full annual allowance for that tax year.

For example, if the deceased's ISA value was £50,000, the surviving spouse can pay in an extra £50,000 into an ISA on top of their personal annual allowance of £20,000.

Remember: as with any investment, the value of investments made through a Stocks & Shares ISA can go down as well as up and you could get back less than you paid in.

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