Blind Person's Allowance

If you live in England and Wales and are certified as blind or severely sight impaired and are on a local authority register of blind (severely sight impaired) people, or if you live in Scotland or Northern Ireland and are unable to perform any work for which eyesight is essential, you can claim Blind Person's Allowance. If you can't use up some or all of your allowance you may be able to transfer it.

On this page:

How Blind Person's Allowance works

Blind Person's Allowance is added to your tax-free Personal Allowance - so is an extra amount of income you can get each year without paying tax. If you are on a low income or even if you don't pay any tax you may be able to transfer your Blind Person's Allowance to your spouse or civil partner - see the section on transferring below.

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Level of Blind Person's Allowance

Blind Person's Allowance for the tax year 2014 to 15 is £2,230 - there are no age or income restrictions.

So if, for example, you're 58, certified as severely sight impaired or blind and registered with your local authority and have:

  • an annual salary of £13,000
  • a Personal Allowance of £10,000
  • Blind Person's Allowance of £2,230

you only need to pay tax on £770 (£13,000 less the sum of £10,000 and £2,230).

If both you and your spouse or civil partner qualify for Blind Person's Allowance you can each get an allowance.

If both you and your spouse or civil partner qualify for Blind Person's Allowance you can each get an allowance.

Personal Allowance - learn more

Check Income Tax allowances and income limits for 2014 to 15

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How you get Blind Person's Allowance

If you think you may be able to claim Blind Person's Allowance contact HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) on the priority Telephone: 0300 200 3301. Lines are open Monday to Friday 8am to 8pm and Saturday 8am to 4pm.

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Transferring your Blind Person's Allowance to your spouse or civil partner

If your tax bill isn't high enough to use up all of your Blind Person's Allowance you can ask HMRC to transfer any unused allowance to your spouse or civil partner. You can do this by:

  • completing form 575 'Notice of transfer of surplus Income Tax allowances'
  • contact HMRC on Telephone: 0300 200 3301 - lines are open Monday to Friday 8am to 8pm and Saturday 8am to 4pm

If you are making a claim to get tax back on a form R40 you can also request form 575 by ticking the appropriate box.

If you don't pay tax and your spouse or civil partner does you can still transfer your unused allowance to them.

If you are also able to claim Married Couple's Allowance you will be able to transfer this allowance to your spouse or civil partner at the same time.

Go to form 575 Notice of transfer of surplus Income Tax allowances

More about Married Couple's Allowance

More about civil partnerships (Opens new window)

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More useful links

Check Income Tax rates and allowances

Plan your retirement income on GOV.UK (Opens new window)

Do you have to pay tax in retirement?

Tax refunds and reclaiming overpaid tax

How to deal with HM Revenue & Customs for someone else

Working and paying tax

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