Checking when I opened ISAs

My financial files are a bit of a shambles. Pending much overdue housekeeping and phoning around, I'm not sure whether I've already used my ISA allowance for the current (2016-17) tax year.
Presumably HM Revenue & Customs have a database to police the rules although I suspect it's unlikely to be impressively up to date.
If such a database exists, can the public access it, directly or indirectly?
I'm also curious. If some enthusiastic investor opens successive cash or share ISAs, deliberately or mindlessly ignoring the rules, what actually happens in practice?
Reply to
Terry Pinnell
I asked a very similar question here a few months ago (at least I think it was here).
The answer is that, if you put too much into ISAs, you'll get a polite little note saying "you can't do that" and returning the money. Apparently there *is* a database of some sort somewhere in HMRC that records this and produces the polite rejection.
Why 'we' can't interrogate it before trying to put money into an ISA is anybody's guess. :-)
Reply to
Chris Green
I mistakenly put two lots of Stocks & Shares ISA's into the one year, one right at the beginning and one right at the end but with different providers. I got a polite letter from HRMC asking me to remove one of them which I did and sent them a copy of the sale.
Had I tried to buy the second one with the same provider they would have course have told me. The OP should readily be able to check with his ISA provider(s) how much he has subscribed. I use 3 providers and each one tells me how much I have left to subscribe with their own system.
If there is any uncertainly then simply invest in this year's ISA, if subsequently not permitted transfer it to next year's ISA. No big deal.
Reply to
HMRC will tell the provider to close the ISA and return the cash *AND* inform you what it is about to do.
That's what happened to me. NatWest had somehow or other let HMRC know that I had opened a new cash ISAs in the current year. I hadn't. I had *transfered* a previous year's ISA to NatWest (using NatWest's transfer in procedure), and I had earlier *opened* a current year's cash ISA with another provider.
It was up to me to communicate, prove and convince HMRC that I had done nothing wrong and that the problem was with NatWest, who did absolutely nothing to help to resolve the problem, (in fact I became convinced that the senior staff member of the branch, at which I was forced (by NatWest) to conduct all my attempts get NatWest to fix the problem, didn't understand the problem).
When it was resolved I transferred the ISA out and won't go near NatWest ever again.
I have no idea what would happen if the ISAs were non cash.
Reply to
brightside S9
AIUI banks make a return to HMRC: 'NI number X has paid in Y pounds to an ISA of type Z' At the end of the tax year HMRC tallies up all the returns and then spots anyone who has broken the rules.
I don't think this is a live process - in other words they won't know what's happened until the end of the year, at which point they'll presumably send you a letter to complain.
I don't think you can ask mid-year to find out - because, even if returns are sent mid-year, you can't be sure how well your bank has been keeping HMRC up to date.
The thing to do is ask any bank(s) you have accounts with what you have deposited so far this year - they will know.
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