2011 ISA deadline dates

Rebecca O'Keeffe, head of investment at Interactive Investor, said: "The ongoing turmoil in Japan and the Middle East has meant some people will have left investing in an ISA until the last minute. Others will simply be topping up their existing investments before the end of the tax year.

"The key message for investors is that while you need to secure this year’s allowance before the deadline next Tuesday, you don’t need to invest in the market immediately, you can simply deposit cash and invest when you’re ready. This money can then either be invested as a lump sum or month by month into the market."

Deadlines differ between providers so make sure you know when the relevant deadlines are for you.

Online and telephone applications

At Northern Rock you can apply for a new ISA online until 6pm on 5 April or top up your existing account until midnight. At HSBC the deadline for online applications is 4 April.

Online applications for both Lloyds and Halifax will be accepted until 11.59pm on 5 April via internet banking.

For telephone applications the deadlines vary from 25 March (West Brom) to 4 April (HSBC). At Lloyds, telephone applications can be made up until 12 noon on 5 April.

At Interactive Investor, existing ISA customers can fund their account online - or by phone - up until the midnight deadline on 5 April.

New customers at Interactive Investor wanting to open an ISA account can also fund by phone and online up to the midnight deadline - but they first have to apply for an account online. This can usually be done within 10 minutes, and funding can be done online or by phone on 0845 880 0267.

Branch applications

For branch applications HSBC's deadline is 1 April while Yorkshire Building Society, West Bromwich Building Society and Santander all accept applications until 5 April as long as customers have the necessary forms of identification. Santander says pre-booked appointments may be necessary. Northern Rock accepts applications up to 4pm on 4 April.

At Lloyd's and Halifax you can apply at a branch during normal opening hours until closing time on 5 April (usually 5pm).


Post applications

If you were planning on submitting an application by post you may be too late as the general rule is to allow at least two or three days for the application to be received and at least one week for it to be processed. However, some providers are accepting until 5 April so check with yours.

Stocks and shares ISAs

Again, deadlines will vary.

For example, Aberdeen Asset Managers the cut off for postal applications was 29 March, but it will accept them up to the 4 April if customers are willing to waive their cooling off period. The same applies to online applications.

For the Scottish Investment Trust PLC, the deadline for postal applications is by noon 5 April and there is no online facility.

Jupiter Asset Management will accept postal applications until 5 April. Baillie Gifford will accept applications by post until 4pm on 4 April and online until 10pm on 4 April.

Check with your provider to make sure you meet its deadline.

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