The latest on the Lending Works ISA

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Open your ISA

It’s now been more than two months since the historic ‘go-live’ date of the Innovative Finance ISA (IFISA) – a new category of ISA which will allow lenders to shield returns on their peer-to-peer (P2P) loans from tax. Understandably, we have been inundated with queries and requests for updates (both from existing and prospective customers) as to when we will be making this product available, so we would like to take this opportunity to bring you up to speed with the status quo.

As many of you may know by now, only peer-to-peer lending platforms which have received full authorisation from the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) will be eligible to offer the new IFISA. Like many of the UK’s major platforms, Lending Works is currently operating under interim permissions, and our application with the FCA for full approval is still pending. We are thus unable to provide an exact date as to when we expect to go live with the new ISA.

This shouldn’t be interpreted in a negative light though. We lodged our application in October 2015, and were informed at the time that the process could take up to 12 months. We fully respect the need for a thorough and diligent review on the part of the FCA, and willingly acknowledge that this is ultimately for the benefit of the consumer in the long run.

What we can say is that platforms in the UK such as Lending Works have led the way in campaigning for the highest standards of regulation and compliance to be upheld across the sector, as we share a collective view that only those of us who are fit for purpose should be able to trade, and deliver a specialist investment product such as the IFISA.

Moreover, we continue to work very closely with representatives of the FCA to progress our application, and we have good reason to believe that everything is very much on track, and are confident of receiving the green light in the near future. From our end, we have long completed all our preparation in terms of the implementation process, so you can expect a swift turnaround once we get the go ahead from the FCA.

In the meantime…

Even before the arrival of the Lending Works ISA, our customers have already started to benefit from a tax efficiency courtesy of the Personal Savings Allowance. For those who pay basic-rate income tax, this means up to £1,000 in returns can be shielded, while for higher-rate taxpayers this allowance falls to the not-insignificant figure of £500.

While waiting for the Lending Works ISA to come into being, we’d also encourage you to educate yourself on the nitty gritty relating to the following:

Nevertheless, it goes without saying that we will continue to keep our customers and the larger public up to speed with developments, and if you’d like to be the first to know when the magic day arrives, you can sign up to our IFISA mailing list for updates.

We're as excited as you are about the arrival of this game-changer in the world of investment, and are confident that the sustained rewards the IFISA is going to bring will quickly consign the mild inconvenience of this delay to history. We’re nearly there, so please do bear with us a little while longer… the Lending Works ISA will become a reality very soon!

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Our website offers information about saving, investing, tax and other financial matters, but not personal advice. If you're not sure whether peer-to-peer lending is right for you, please seek independent financial advice, and if you decide to invest with Lending Works, please read our Key Lender Information PDF first.

As with all investments, your capital is at risk.