SNP vows to scrap marriage tax breaks

Wedding ringsPrime Minister David Cameron said he believed marriage should be recognised in the tax system

The SNP has confirmed it would scrap a planned tax break for married couples if it was elected to lead an independent Scotland.

The party claimed the UK government tax break discriminated again women.

The £700m plan, which comes into force in 2015, will allow lower earners to transfer up to a £1,000 of their unused tax allowance to their spouse.

The SNP’s blueprint for independence had indicated the tax change would be abolished.

The party has now said the focus should be on improving childcare.

It argued the tax break would overwhelmingly benefit men and leave bereaved and abused women out in the cold.

UK Prime Minister David Cameron said that he believed marriage should be recognised in the tax system but the Nationalists said a scheme which only supported a traditional nuclear family showed just how out of touch the UK government was.

Labour has also previously said Mr Cameron was “out of touch” if he thought the people would get married “for £3.85 a week”.

The tax break would apply if couples were both basic rate tax payers with one spouse earning less than the personal allowance – the amount of income you can receive each year without having to pay tax on it. This will be just over £10,000 in 2015.

The Scottish government does not currently have the power to reverse the change as most tax powers are reserved to Westminster.

A referendum on Scottish independence will take place on 18 September next year.

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