We're currently experiencing extremely high call volumes. We're very sorry for any inconvenience this might cause. If you need help with your account, please visit our Help Centre, or email us and we’ll get back to you as soon as we can. For more information and tips on managing your account online please visit www.hl.co.uk/coronavirus

We’re experiencing high call volumes, please check FAQs before calling.

Skip to main content
  • Register
  • Help
  • Contact us
  • Log out of your HL account

How much can I invest in a SIPP before 5 April? - and other FAQs

We answer some of the most common pension questions from the end of the tax year.

Important notes

This article isn’t personal advice. If you’re not sure whether an investment is right for you please seek advice. If you choose to invest the value of your investment will rise and fall, so you could get back less than you put in.

With the end of the tax year almost here, Thursday 5 April, our experts get thousands of questions about pension contributions.

We’ve answered some of the most common below.

Remember, it takes just a few minutes to make a pension contribution to the HL SIPP (self-invested personal pension) and you could boost the amount you save by up to 45% with tax relief from the government. It’s easy to add money online with your debit card.


Q. Do I have to choose investments before 5 April?

No. If you’re not sure where to invest now, you can add money to your SIPP today and secure up to 45% tax relief.

You can choose your investments when you’re ready.


Q. I’m ready to invest now. What are my options?

The HL SIPP is a type of pension that opens the doors, so you can choose all your own investments from a large selection. If you want to choose investments for your SIPP now, you might find our last-minute investment ideas helpful.

With the freedom and flexibility of a SIPP also comes the responsibility. You’ll need to be comfortable making your own investment decisions. And there’s always risk with investing because the value of your investments can go down as well as up, so you could get back less than you put in.


Q. How much tax relief could I get?

No matter how much tax you pay, the government will always add 20% in tax relief to your pension. This includes children and other non-taxpayers. You just need to be a UK resident, under 75. So if you put in £800, the government will add an extra £200, bringing the total amount to £1,000.

You should make sure you don’t contribute any more than 100% of your earnings after tax relief has been received, or £3,600 if this is greater. The annual allowance might restrict the amount of tax relief you can benefit from.

How much can I contribute?

If you pay higher-rate tax (40%) you can claim up to a further 20% in tax relief through your tax return or local tax office. Top-rate taxpayers (45%) can claim back up to a further 25%. You must pay enough tax at the relevant rate to claim back the full amount.

Tax rules can and do change over time, and any benefits you receive will depend on your personal circumstances.

Use our tax relief calculator to see how little a pension contribution could cost you.

Q. Can my employer pay into my SIPP?

Yes, your employer can make contributions to your HL SIPP.

If you’re authorised to make payments on behalf of the company and you’ve registered your company details with us, you can use your company’s debit card to make contributions to your HL SIPP online. Unlike a cheque or bank transfer, you won’t have to wait for the cheque to arrive or your money to clear. It’ll be available to invest right away.

Simply log in to your account as normal and click the blue ‘Top up’ button. You’ll see the ‘Employer contribution’ tab, where you can enter your company debit card details and make a gross contribution to your SIPP. Before applying please read the Key Features (including the Contribution Checklist).

If you’d like to register your company details with us so you can make contributions online, just call 0117 980 9926. We can set everything up in one phone call.

If you aren’t authorised to make payments on behalf of the company, your employer can pay in by cheque, bank transfer, and/or Direct Debit. Employer contributions are paid gross. This means basic-rate tax relief is not deducted from the contribution. We also accept employee contributions which are paid by the employer and deducted from net pay (after tax and National Insurance).

Make an employer contribution

Q. I haven’t paid any income tax this year, can I still top up my SIPP?

Every UK resident under 75 can save money into a pension and get tax relief – even if they don’t work or pay tax. The maximum amount you can contribute is £3,600 each tax year. But you don’t have to pay the full amount. You just pay in £2,880 and the government will add £720 automatically. This is a popular way for many people to save into a pension on behalf of their children or a non-earning spouse or partner.

Q. How much can I invest in a SIPP before 5 April?

You can usually add as much as you earn and receive tax relief each year. There’s also an annual allowance (£40,000 for most people, but could be lower for some people) which limits the amount you can pay into your pension. Each contribution includes the money you put in, as well as what the government adds in tax relief.

Learn more about paying into your pension

Tax rules can change over time and the tax relief you receive depends on your circumstances.

Q. I didn’t use all of my annual allowance last year. What can I do?

If you haven’t used your full annual allowance from previous years, you might be able to carry it forward and use it in the current tax year. This could mean you can make a contribution of up to £160,000 in some cases.

Find out more about ‘carry forward’

Q. How do I add money to the HL SIPP?

You can make an online contribution to the HL SIPP in just a few minutes with your debit card and secure up to 45% tax relief if it’s before 5 April. Remember, once held in a pension your money isn’t usually accessible until age 55 (57 from 2028).

Before applying, please make sure you understand the risks and read our terms and conditions (including tariff of charges) plus the key features (including the contribution checklist and important investment notes).

Investments can go down as well as up in value, so you could get back less than you put in. This article isn't personal advice. The HL SIPP is for people who want to choose their own investments. If you’re not sure which investments are right for you, we can put you in touch with an adviser. Tax rules can change and any benefits depend on your circumstances.

Make your SIPP contribution online

Make your SIPP contribution by phone: 0117 980 9897

If you have any questions, just give us a call on 0117 980 9926. As the end of the tax year is so close, we’ve extended our opening hours:

We’re here this Easter weekend

Friday 30 March: 9.30am-3.30pm

Easter Saturday: 9.30am-3.30pm

Easter Sunday: Closed

Easter Monday: 9.30am-3.30pm

Tuesday 3 April: 8.00am-8.00pm

Wednesday 4 April: 8.00am-10.00pm

Thursday 5 April: 8.00am-Midnight

Important notes

This article isn’t personal advice. If you’re not sure whether an investment is right for you please seek advice. If you choose to invest the value of your investment will rise and fall, so you could get back less than you put in.

Daily market update emails

  • FTSE 100 riser and faller updates
  • Breaking market news, plus the latest share research, tips and broker comments

Related articles

Category: Investing and saving

How early should you use your ISA allowance?

We look at the benefit of opening your ISA now, rather than later.

Jason Roberts

06 Apr 2020 2 min read

Category: ISAs

ISAs – how much do the tax benefits really matter?

We crunch the numbers to show just how much tax an ISA could save.

Georgia Tivadar

03 Apr 2020 4 min read

Category: Investing and saving

The stress-free way to secure this year’s ISA allowance

With the end of tax year fast approaching on 5 April, we take a look at a simple stress-free way to secure this tax year’s ISA allowance without the need to invest straight away.

Georgia Tivadar

03 Apr 2020 2 min read

Category: Pensions

The impact of dividend cuts on drawdown investors

We look at what drawdown investors could do following recent dividend cuts.

Michelle Branco

02 Apr 2020 3 min read