Junior ISAs

Junior ISAs (JISAs) became available from 1st November 2011 and are the child equivalent of an ISA. Children can hold up to one cash and one stocks and shares JISA concurrently.

The qualifying investments for both cash and stocks and shares JISAs are the same as for the adult equivalents:

  • Stocks and shares – in the form of either individual shares or bonds, or pooled investments such as open-ended investment companies, unit trusts, investment trusts or life assurance investments; and
  • Cash – usually containing a bank or building society savings account.

All UK-resident children under the age of 18 who do not have a Child Trust Fund (CTF) are eligible for JISAs. This includes children born before the launch of the CTF (the CTF was available to children born between 1st September 2002 and 2nd January 2011). Anyone with parental responsibility for an eligible child can open a JISA for that child.

Eligible children will be able to open JISAs for themselves from age 16, and between ages 16 and 18, they can hold one of each type of JISA plus an ‘adult’ cash ISA. Previous years’ JISA subscriptions can be transferred in whole or in part subject to the child not having two accounts of the same type at the end of the transfer process.

Current years’ JISA subscriptions must be transferred in full. This means that part transfers of JISA investments can only be made to a JISA of a different type (cash or stocks and shares). A transfer from a cash JISA to another cash JISA or a stocks and shares JISA to another stocks and shares JISA must involve the transfer of the entire contents of the ‘old’ JISA. The end result must mean that the child still has no more than one of each type of JISA. Savings in Child Trust Funds can also be transferred to JISAs.

Any person or organisation can contribute to a child’s JISA. The overall contribution limit of a JISA is much less than an ‘adult’ ISA and is usually indexed annually by CPI.

Past performance is not a reliable indicator of future results