ISA: You may not be able to open certain accounts if you hold this savings product

ISAs are usually grouped into four different categories but there is further variation within those groupings. There are four main types of ISA which includes cash, stocks and shares, innovative and lifetime ISAs.

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However, within those groups it’s possible to also hold a Help to buy or Junior ISAs.

Junior ISAs are fairly unique in their own right as they have slight variation in rules.

Most ISAs can have a maximum of £20,000 invested into them in a tax year but Junior ISAs have a limit of £9,000.

They can also only be opened for children aged under 18 and once they reach that age, the account will automatically convert to an adult version.

Only parents or guardians with parental responsibility can open a Junior ISA for children under 16.

To open one of these accounts, a parent will need to decide on the specific type (cash or stocks and shares) and then they’ll need to work with an account provider to get the ball rolling.

Fortunately, there are multiple avenues for opening a Junior ISA as they can be opened with banks, building societies, credit unions and other types of financial companies.

However, if the person setting up the account already holds another type of savings product they may face difficulties.

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As it stands, it is not possible to have a Junior ISA as well as a Child Trust Fund (CTF) according to the government.

They detail that if a person wants to open a Junior ISA in this context they will need to ask the provider to transfer the trust fund into one.

CTFs were long-term tax free savings accounts designed for children which can no longer be opened.

The scheme for CTFs was closed by the state and Junior ISAs are considered to be a replacement for them.

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Holders of CTFs can still add money to them and just like Junior ISAs, they currently have a limit of £9,000 a year.

If a parent decides to keep hold of a CTF they need to note that they’ll have certain responsibilities.

The main contact for the account will be called the “registered contact” and they’ll be required to keep on top of certain things until the child turns 18.

The registered contact is the only person who will be able to:

  • tell the account provider how to invest the fund and run the account
  • change the address and other personal details
  • change the type of account, for example from cash to stocks and shares
  • move the account to another provider

On top of this, the registered contact will also need to keep hold of the following paperwork:

  • The child’s Unique Reference Number
  • the account statements
  • details of the account type and the provider

To move money from a CTF to a Junior ISA they will need to contact a provider to get everything ready.

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