A JISA is a tax-free savings account designed for children under the age of 18. You can open and save or invest in a JISA on your child’s behalf. Similar to adult ISAs, there are two types of JISAs: Cash JISAs and Stocks and Shares JISAs. These accounts can be opened and managed by parents or legal guardians on behalf of a child until they turn 18.
What are the investment options available for a JISA account?
Parents and guardians can choose a Cash JISA, Stocks and Shares JISA, or a combination of both.
Cash JISA: Similar to a savings account, these accounts offer a guaranteed (but lower) return on savings.
Stocks and Shares JISA: Invests in shares and stocks, with the potential for higher returns but greater risk.
What are the eligibility criteria for opening an account?
To be eligible, the child must be under 18 years old and a UK resident. Plus, the child must not have a Child Trust Fund (CTF) account – a previous government-backed savings scheme that has since been replaced by the JISA. Parents or legal guardians can open an account on behalf of the child, but the account is in the child’s name. Once the child reaches 18 years of age, they will have full control of the account.
How is this type of account different to a Child Trust Fund (CTF)?
JISAs were introduced in 2011 to replace the CTF, a government initiative to encourage parents to save for their children’s future. While the CTF was only available to children born between September 1, 2002, and January 2, 2011, the JISA is available to all children under the age of 18 who meet the eligibility criteria. Additionally, the CTF had a government contribution of £250 when the account was opened and another £250 on the child’s seventh birthday, which is not available with a JISA.
What are the fees associated with opening and maintaining an account?
JISA providers charge different fees depending on the type of account you choose. Many are free; however, some providers may charge a fee for opening or transferring the account. Others may charge an annual management fee.
What is the maximum amount I can contribute to a JISA account each year?
The annual contribution limit for the 2023/24 tax year is £9,000. This limit is subject to change each year.
How do I transfer money from my own ISA to my child’s JISA?
Parents or guardians can transfer money from their own ISA to their child’s JISA by instructing their ISA provider to make a transfer. To do this, you will need your child’s ISA details, including the bank account number and sort code. Depending on your provider, you may need to visit the branch or make a phone call to make the transfer. Some providers will allow you to manage your ISA, including making transfers to your child’s JISA, online through a website or app. It is important to note that once the transfer has been made, the money belongs to the child and cannot be transferred back to the parent or withdrawn until the child’s 18th birthday.
A JISA is an excellent way to invest in your child’s future and help them benefit from tax-free savings. By opening an account, you can help your child build a brighter future, securing their financial independence for when they turn 18.