UK Junior ISA (Account Options)

This is a really quick one for completeness. A Junior ISA won’t be part of your own retirement/FIRE planning, but maybe something you consider for your kids. They come in both cash and Stocks & Shares (S&S) flavors – the rules are almost the same as adult ISAs. I’ve only called out the handful of differences below, for more details see the cash ISA and S&S ISA pages.

Synopsis

Child versions of cash and S&S ISAs – potentially a good way of saving for your kids’ futures.

Priority

If you’re trying to save for your children, this can make sense, particularly the S&S version, as long as you’re comfortable investing in individual stocks on their behalf. You get partial tax advantages (UK only) and the chance of a higher return than a savings account.

I don’t see much value in the cash version, because of the generous personal and savings allowances. You’re probably better off just opening a savings account, where you’ll get equal or better interest and you can get they money when you need it.

Eligibility

UK residents age 0 to 17. The child is the account holder – once they turn 18, it’s their money and they can do whatever they want with it. You might want them to pay for university housing, but they might want to blow it all clubbing in Ibiza and you can’t stop them.

Note that there is overlap here with the adult cash ISA – kids aged 16 and 17 can have both a junior ISA and an adult cash ISA.

Withdrawal Options

Until the child turns 18, you can’t touch the money. The only exceptions are death or terminal illness of the child, which we’re all certainly hoping won’t happen.

Once the child turns 18, the account turns into an adult ISA and the money can be withdrawn as needed.

Contributions LImit

£9,000 per year, per child – this can be split between cash and S&S or all in one.

Tax & Fees

Basically all the same as an adult cash or S&S ISA.

Further Reading

MoneySavingExpert on Junior ISAs

One thought on “UK Junior ISA (Account Options)

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