For richer, for poorer
LONDON – The government will not introduce a tax break for married couples in next month’s budget, it has emerged.
There had been speculation David Cameron would bring in the measure to appease Tory backbenchers who are opposed to gay marriage.
However, legislation is expected to be introduced before 2015 to allow couples to transfer part of their personal tax allowance to their partner.
The Commons will vote next week on the government’s plans for gay marriage.
The Marriage (Same Sex Couples) Bill would enable same-sex couples to get married in both civil and religious ceremonies, where a religious institution had formally consented, in England and Wales.
It would also allow couples who have previously entered into civil partnerships to convert their relationship into a marriage.
BBC political correspondent Vicki Young said the tax news had to be seen in the context of the highly contentious vote on gay marriage, with dozens of Tory MPs opposed to it.
The two issues are linked in their minds because they say it is about Cameron’s priorities, putting gay marriage ahead of married tax breaks. (BBC)