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What is net income for pension relief purposes?

The lifetime allowance is the maximum amount of pension and/or lump sum that benefits from tax relief. The lifetime allowance is currently set at £1,073,100. The annual allowance for tax relief on pensions is currently £40,000 and there is a three year carry forward rule that allows taxpayers to carry forward unused annual allowance from the last three tax years if they have made pension savings in those years. 

If you have a reduced (tapered) annual allowance the first step is to calculate your net income. Your net income is your taxable income for the year less any tax reliefs such as payments made to your pension scheme that had tax relief but were paid before the relief was applied. You will also need to quantify your pension savings, threshold income and adjusted income.

Those with an adjusted income over £240,000 will begin to see their £40,000 annual allowance tapered. For every complete £2 income exceeds £240,000 the annual allowance is reduced by £1. In recent years, both the annual and lifetime allowances have been gradually reduced removing the amount of tax relief on pensions available to high earners.

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