Spring 2023 Budget

The Chancellor used his budget speech to announce that the Office for Budget Responsibility now does not believe the UK will enter a technical recession, as previously predicted by the end of this year.

The government is maintaining the Energy Price Guarantee for a further three months (April – June).  Commitment to align charges for Pre-Payment Meter customers comparable with those who pay by direct debit.

Fuel duty will be kept at current level for the next 12 months (keeping 5p cut in place).

There is a Draught Relief duty charged on a typical pint of beer in pubs, this will be frozen from August to ensure prices will always be lower than in the supermarket.

Pension Tax Rule Reform

Currently, there are limits placed on how much an individual can contribute to their pension without tax consequences, both annually and during their lifetime.  To stop these limits acting as a barrier to remaining in work, the Lifetime Allowance charge will be removed from April 2023, and the Lifetime Allowance totally abolished from April 2024.  The annual allowance will increase from £40,000 to £60,000 from April 2023.

Another change is that from 6th April there will be an increase to the money purchase annual allowance.  This will mean that for those with a defined contribution pension who have already made a withdrawal, the amount  you can continue to save into a pension while benefiting from tax relief will increase from £4,000 to £10,000.

Child Care Reform

From September 2025 all children from the age of 9 months will be entitled to 30 hours of free childcare for 38 weeks.  This is being faced in from April 2024.   For those on Universal Credit, childcare funding will be available upfront.

The government also announced that they will be launching a new scheme to support school-based child care provision, before and after the school day.

Welfare Reforms

Reforms to support people into work and to remove barriers to stop those with health conditions and older workers from working were announced.