Social Security abroad
NI38
Contents
Introduction 1
Information about European
Economic Area (EEA) and reciprocal
agreement countries 2
EEA 2
The EEA countries 2
Reciprocal agreement countries 3
National Insurance contributions
(NICs) 3
Summary of NICs
classes and UK benefits 3
Class 1 4
Class 1A 4
Class 1B 4
Class 2 4
Class 3 4
Class 4 4
How much you pay 5
If you are employed abroad 6
When you must pay Class 1 NICs 6
Ordinarily resident 6
Paying voluntar y NICs while
you are abroad 9
Class 2 NICs 9
Class 3 NICs 10
This leaflet is available
in larger print, Braille
and audio.
Deciding whether to pay
voluntar y NICs 11
Time limits and penalties for
late payment 13
Special provisions 13
How much do you pay? 13
How to pay voluntar y NICs abroad 14
Direct Debit 14
The Direct Debit Guarantee 15
Annual payment 15
Payments by an agent 15
Payment of arrears 15
Volunteer Development Workers 16
How to pay Volunteer Development
Workers Class 2 NICs abroad 16
If you are paying Class 2 or
Class 3 NICs before going abroad 17
Other ways of covering your
National Insurance record 17
Credits 17
Home Responsibilities Protection 18
Additional information 19
Social security benefits that
depend on your NICs 20
What NICs are needed? 20
Contribution-based
Jobseekers Allowance 21
Contribution-based Employment
and Support Allowance 21
Maternity Allowance 21
State Pension 21
How do I get an estimate of my
State Pension? 22
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Social Security abroadNI38
Contents (continued)
Benefits and pensions for
widows, widowers and
surviving civil par tners 23
Bereavement benefits 23
War pensions 23
Social security benefits that do
not depend on NICs 24
Attendance Allowance 24
Disability Living Allowance 24
Child Benefit 25
Guardians Allowance 25
Working Tax Credit 25
Child Tax Credit 25
Income-based
Jobseekers Allowance 25
Income-related Employment
and Support Allowance 25
Industrial Injuries
Disablement Benefits 26
Carers Allowance 26
Income Support 26
Increase of benefit for
your dependants 27
How to claim benefit when
you are abroad 27
Payments based on
employment and earnings 27
Statutor y Maternity Pay and
Maternity Allowance 27
Statutor y Sick Pay 28
Statutor y Paternity Pay 28
Additional Statutor y Paternity Pay 29
Statutor y Adoption Pay 29
Statutor y Shared Parental Pay 30
Universal Credit 30
Cover for health care 30
Health care when visiting
another EEA countr y 30
Health care when living, working or
studying in another EEA countr y 31
Health care when visiting a
non-EEA country 31
Health care when living or
working in a non-EEA country 32
Access to the National
Health Service (NHS) 32
For more information and advice 33
Useful addresses 33
Helplines 34
Welsh language 34
Your rights and obligations 34
How we use your information 34
Call charges 35
Special notes and advice for
completion of application
form CF83 36
SocialSocial
If you are going abroad, this leaflet will help you
decide if you should pay National Insurance
contributions (NICs) to the UK National Insurance
scheme. It also gives details about getting
benefits abroad.
Introduction
Some people employed abroad have to pay UK NICs. Others may
choose to pay them to help qualify for benefits when they get
back to this country or for State Pension or bereavement benefits
whether they come back or stay abroad.
The leaflet is based on the law as it stands at date of publication.
Any changes to the law may affect the information
contained here.
This leaflet describes the classes of NICs, and how paying them
affects your entitlement to social security benefits. It also
describes arrangements for getting health care cover.
This leaflet does not apply to ever yone.
If you are:
going to a European Economic Area (EEA) country or to a country
which has a reciprocal agreement on social security with the UK,
see pages 2 and 3 for how to get more information
going to Northern Ireland or the Isle of Man, you don’t need
this leaflet because the social security systems there are linked
to the UK’s and vice versa
a mariner, a member of the crew of a civil aircraft, a member of
the Armed Forces serving abroad, or a member of a service
family living abroad, then dif ferent arrangements apply.
For further information contact HM Revenue & Customs
(HMRC), National Insurance Contributions & Employer Office
(NIC&EO) - their address can be found on page 33
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NI38 Social Security abroad
EEA
The EEA countries
Information about European Economic Area
(EEA) and reciprocal agreement countries
If you are going to an EEA country you may be covered by the
European Community (EC) social security rules instead of the
rules in this leaflet.
Austria Hungary Portugal
Belgium Iceland Romania
Bulgaria Ireland Slovakia
Croatia Italy Slovenia
Cyprus Latvia Spain
Czech Republic Liechtenstein Sweden
Denmark Lithuania Switzerland*
Estonia Luxembourg
United Kingdom
(including
Gibraltar but not
the Channel
Islands or the Isle
of Man)
Finland Malta
France The Netherlands
Germany Norway
Greece Poland
*Switzerland is not a member of the EEA but has applied
the EC regulations on social security since 1 June 2002.
If you are going to a countr y covered by the EC social security
rules, contact HMRC (see contact details on page 33). Say how
long you intend to stay and, if you are going to work, who your
employer is.
For more information about the extent of the EC social security
legislation, benefits and health care provision, go to
www.gov.uk/claim-benefits-abroad
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NI38 Social Security abroad
Reciprocal
agreement countries
Summar y of NICs
classes and UK
benefits
The UK has two-way agreements with some other countries
about social security. If you are going abroad to any of the
countries listed, go to www.gov.uk/claim-benefits-abroad for
more information.
Barbados
Bermuda
Canada
Israel
Jamaica
Japan*
Jersey and Guernsey
Korea*
Mauritius
New Zealand
Philippines
Turkey
USA
Republics of former Yugoslavia – this means the Republics of
Bosnia-Herzegovina, Macedonia and Serbia.
*The Double Contributions Conventions for Japan and the
Republic of Korea only cover social security contribution liability
and do not include benefits.
National Insurance contributions (NICs)
There are 6 classes of NICs. NICs help to pay for some social
security benefits, including State Pension. The class you pay in the
UK depends on whether you are employed, self-employed or can
pay voluntary NICs.
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NI38 Social Security abroad
You must pay Class1 NICs if you work for an employer and your
Class 1
earnings are at, or above, the Primary Threshold (sometimes referred
to as the Earnings Threshold). The amount you pay depends on what
you earn, (up to the maximum NICs an employee can pay). Your NICs
are deducted from your wages. Your employer also has to pay NICs for
all employees who earn at, or above, the Primary Threshold.
Class 1A NICs are paid only by employers who provide employees with
Class 1A
certain benefits in kind for private use, for example, cars and fuel .
Class 1B NICs are paid only by employers who enter into a
Class 1B
Pay as You Earn (PAYE) Settlement Agreement with HMRC for tax.
Subject to certain exceptions, Class 2 NICs have to be paid in respect
Class 2
of each week in which you are self-employed. You pay the same
amount however much you earn. In the UK, most Class 2 NICs from
self-employment are collected through Self Assessment together with
tax and Class 4 NICs.
Class 3 NICs are voluntary contributions and can be paid if you want
Class 3
to protect your right to some social security benefits and you are not
liable to pay Class 1 or Class 2 NICs. You pay them like Class 2 NICs, or
as a lump sum at the end of the tax year. Although the payment of
Class 3 NICs is voluntar y, they cannot be automatically refunded to
you at a later date.
Class 4 NICs are for self-employed people whose net profits are over a
Class 4
certain amount. These are normally paid by self-employed people in
addition to Class 2 NICs. They are collected through Self Assessment,
together with Class 2 NICs and Income Tax. They don’t count
towards benefits.
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NI38 Social Security abroad
How much you pay The amounts charged normally change at the beginning of
each tax year (6 April). For more details, go to
www.gov.uk/national-insurance-rates-letters
The class of NICs you pay affects the benefits you can get.
The following table shows which NICs count for which benefit.
Benefit Class 1 Class 2 Class 3
Contribution-based
Jobseeker’s Allowance Yes No No
Contribution-based
Employment and
Support Allowance Yes Yes No
Bereavement benefits Yes Yes Yes
Basic State Pension Yes Yes Yes
Addtional State Pension Yes No No
New State Pension (if you
reach State Pension age
on or after 6 April 2016) Yes Yes Yes
Other benefits are non-contributory. This means that you don’t
have to pay any NICs to get them, but you must meet the
conditions that apply to them. For details of non-contributory
benefits, see pages 24 to 27.
Some payments are based on your employment and earnings.
These are Statutory Maternity Pay (SMP) and Maternity
Allowance (MA), Statutory Sick Pay (SSP), Statutory Paternity Pay
(SPP) or Additional Statutor y Paternity Pay (ASPP), Statutor y
Shared Parental Pay (ShPP) and Statutory Adoption Pay (SAP).
You have to meet the conditions that apply to them, see pages
27 to 30. If you and your employer are liable to pay NICs on your
earnings whilst you are working abroad you may be able to get
SMP, SSP, SPP or ASPP, ShPP and SAP from your employer. If you
cannot get SMP but have paid Class 1 NICs abroad these may help
you to get MA on your return to the UK.
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NI38 Social Security abroad
When you must
pay Class 1 NICs
Benefits for widows, widowers, and from December 2005 surviving
civil partners, are dependent on the Class 1, 2 or 3 NICs paid by
your late spouse or late civil partner.
Before April 2016 a married woman’s basic State Pension can also
be based partly or wholly on their husband’s National Insurance
record if this increases the value of their entitlement. From 6 April
2010 a married man’s or civil partner ’s basic State Pension can be
based partly or wholly on the National Insurance record of their
wife or civil partner if:
• they have both reached State Pension age
• their wife or civil partner was born on or after 6 April 1950 and
is entitled to basic State Pension
If you are divorced or have had your civil partnership dissolved and
have not married again or formed a new civil partnership, you may
be able to claim benefits based on your former spouse’s or former
civil partner ’s NICs. See page 19 for further information, also for
information if you reach State Pension age on or after April 2016.
If you are employed abroad
When you are employed abroad, Class 1 NICs must be paid for the
first 52 weeks you are there, if you meet the following conditions:
• your employer has a place of business in the UK
• you are ‘ordinarily resident’ in the UK (see below)
• you were resident in the UK immediately before starting the
employment abroad
Ordinarily resident
You are ordinarily resident in a particular countr y if you:
• normally live there, apart from temporary or occasional absences
• have a settled and regular mode of life there
When you tell us your ‘ordinarily resident’ status you must base
this on your circumstances at the time you left the UK. This is
important as it will help you to work out your correct
National Insurance insurability position for your period abroad.
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NI38 Social Security abroad
Being ordinarily resident in the UK for National Insurance
purposes is different to being resident in the UK for Income Tax
purposes. It does not follow that:
• if you are non-resident in the UK for Income Tax purposes, that
you will also be not ordinarily resident in the UK for
National Insurance purposes
• if you are ordinarily resident in the UK for National Insurance
purposes, that you will also be resident in the UK for Income
Tax purposes
You may be ordinarily resident in:
• a place from which you are temporarily absent
• two places at once, in some circumstances
When you go abroad, there are a number of factors which are
considered in deciding whether or not you are ordinarily resident
in the UK. For example, see table on page 8.
HMRC, International Caseworker will consider the circumstances
of individual cases. If you have any doubts about whether you are
ordinarily resident or not, contact them at the address shown on
page 33, giving as much information as possible based on the
guidelines on pages 6 and 7.
Class 1 NICs are payable by you and your employer just as if you
were employed in the UK. The rates are the same and your
employer will deduct your contribution from your salar y and pay
it to HMRC on your behalf.
If your employer is an overseas government or an international
organisation such as the United Nations High Commissioner for
Refugees, they might not pay the employer’s share of the Class 1
NICs because of their legal position in this country. If this is the
case, you become liable to pay your own Class 1 NICs.
If you don’t pay these Class 1 NICs for the first 52 weeks of your
employment abroad, you cannot pay Class 2 or Class 3 NICs
instead. This means there will be a gap in your National Insurance
record, which could af fect your entitlement to any of the benefits
listed in the table on page 5.
Payment of Class 1 NICs during your first 52 weeks abroad can help
you to satisfy the conditions for contribution-based Jobseeker’s
Allowance, contribution-based Employment and Support Allowance,
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NI38 Social Security abroad
or Maternity Allowance on your return to the UK and protect your
entitlement to State Pension and bereavement benefits.
If you are in any doubt about the status of your employer or require
information on how to pay your share of Class 1 NICs, write to HMRC,
NIC&EO, International Caseworker at the address shown on page 33.
After the first 52 weeks you may wish to pay either Class 2 or Class 3
NICs on a voluntary basis to protect your entitlement to State
Pension and bereavement benefits. Although these benefits are
payable anywhere abroad, they are not normally increased when
pension rates go up in the UK.
Factor Indication that you are
You return to the UK from time to time
during the period of employment abroad.
Ordinarily resident in the UK. The more
frequent and longer the returns, the stronger
the indication that you are ordinarily resident
in the UK.
Visits to your family who have remained
at your home in the UK, or holidays spent
at your home in the UK.
Ordinarily resident in the UK.
Visits in connection with the overseas
work, for example for briefing or training
or to make a report.
Not such a strong indication that you are
ordinarily resident in the UK.
Partner and/or children are with you
during your overseas employment.
Not ordinarily resident in the UK, especially if
you do not retain a home in the UK or only
make occasional visits to the UK.
You maintain a home in the UK during
your absence.
Ordinarily resident in the UK.
Your home in the UK is available for your
use on your return.
Ordinarily resident in the UK, but if your house
has been rented on a long let it is not a strong
indication of being ordinarily resident.
You have lived in the UK for a
substantial period.
The longer the period, the stronger the indication
that you are ordinarily resident in the UK despite
the period of employment abroad.
You will return to the UK at the end of
your employment abroad.
The earlier the return, the stronger the indication
that you are ordinarily resident in the UK.
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NI38 Social Security abroad
Paying voluntary NICs while you
are abroad
You may choose to pay Class 2 NICs to help you qualify for
Class 2 NICs
contribution-based Employment and Support Allowance when
you get back to the UK, as well as State Pension and
bereavement benefits.
You can pay Class 2 NICs if you are employed or self-employed
abroad and if you satisfy the following conditions:
• you have lived in the UK for a continuous 3-year period at any
time before the period for which NICs are to be paid - (if you
have lived or worked in another EEA countr y or in Turkey, time
spent there may help you to meet this condition)
• before going abroad you paid a set amount in NICs for 3 years
or more (this will be checked when you ask to pay Class 2 NICs)
• immediately before going abroad you were ordinarily an
employed or self-employed earner in the UK
You cannot pay Class 2 NICs for any period during which you are
liable to pay Class 1 NICs.
If you want to apply to pay Class 2 NICs while you are abroad,
fill in and return the application form CF83 at the back of this
leaflet and on a separate sheet of paper include details of:
• your employment(s)
• self-employment(s)
• periods of registered unemployment
during the past 3 years and tell us the date you:
• gave up work
• will give up work
before going abroad.
Please also tell us when you intend to start, or have started work
abroad and, if possible, supply documentary evidence to support
your employment position abroad.
If you are liable for Class 1 NICs please don’t apply to pay Class 2
NICs until your liability for Class 1 NICs has ended.
Voluntary payment of Class 2 NICs does not give cover for health
care abroad in any circumstances.
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Class 3 NICs
NI38 Social Security abroad
Voluntar y NICs correctly paid at one rate cannot later be
converted to another rate simply because the other rate
is cheaper.
You can pay voluntary Class 3 NICs to protect your right to
State Pension and, if you are married or in a civil partnership,
your spouse’s or surviving civil partner’s right to bereavement
benefits. Although these benefits are payable anywhere abroad,
they are not normally increased when pension rates go up in
the UK. In addition, these NICs do not count towards
contribution-based Employment and Support Allowance or
Maternity Allowance.
You can pay Class 3 NICs whether you are working abroad or not,
but not for the period you are liable to pay Class 1 NICs.
You can pay Class 3 NICs abroad:
• if you have paid Class 1 NICs for the first 52 weeks of your
employment abroad
• if you satisfy both of the following conditions
— you have lived in the UK for a continuous 3-year period at
any time before the period for which NICs are to be paid.
(If you have lived or worked in another EEA countr y or
in Turkey, time spent there might help you to meet
this condition)
— before you went abroad, you paid a set amount in NICs for
3 years or more (this will be checked when you ask to pay
Class 3 NICs)
If you want to apply to pay Class 3 NICs while you are abroad, fill
in and return the application form CF83 at the back of this leaflet.
If you are liable for Class 1 NICs please don’t apply to pay
voluntar y Class 3 NICs until your liability for Class 1 NICs
has ended.
Voluntary payment of Class 3 NICs does not give cover for health
care abroad in any circumstances.
Voluntar y NICs correctly paid at one rate cannot be later
converted to another rate simply because the other rate
is cheaper.
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NI38 Social Security abroad
Deciding whether to pay voluntar y NICs
You can generally choose to pay Class 2 or Class 3 NICs while
abroad if you wish to protect your entitlement to some social
security benefits.
There are some points to bear in mind when deciding what NICs
you wish to pay.
For entitlement to benefits you must pay 52 voluntar y NICs for
ever y tax year for which you choose to pay. Paying less will not
give you a qualifying year. If you have paid Class 1 NICs, or
received credits for any part of a tax year, the number of Class 2
or Class 3 NICs you may need to pay can only be calculated after
the end of that tax year, and after the Class 1 NICs or credits have
been recorded on your National Insurance account.
It could be in your own interest to ask for a statement of your
NICs for the year you left the UK. (See page 22 for information
about pension statements and page 13 for the time limits and
penalties for late payment.)
If you are entitled to pay both Class 2 and Class 3 NICs, you can
change from one to the other as you choose by filling in form
CF83. But you cannot change from Class 3 to Class 2 NICs if you
are not working.
Class 2 NICs can help you satisfy the conditions to qualify for
contribution-based Employment and Support Allowance when
you return to the UK. They will also help protect your entitlement
to State Pension and bereavement benefits which can be paid
anywhere abroad.
The amount of basic State Pension you may receive, and the
amount of bereavement benefit your surviving spouse may
receive, depends on the number of qualifying years of NICs you
have paid or been credited with.
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NI38 Social Security abroad
The State Pension is changing from April 2016.
This new State Pension will be for:
• men born on or after 6 April 1951
• women born on or after 6 April 1953
The changes will replace the current system of basic State Pension
and additional State Pension with a single system - the new State
Pension. You will need a minimum of 10 qualifying years to
receive any new State Pension from 2016. NICs paid before 2016
will be recognised in the new system. Changes are also being
made to the State Pension age.
If you reach State Pension Age on or after 6 April 2016, you will
be affected by these proposed changes. You may wish to consider
how these changes af fect your decision to pay voluntar y
NICs. For more information, go to www.gov.uk/new-state-
pension
If you reach State Pension age before April 2016, the present rules
apply, for more information, go to www.gov.uk/statepension
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NI38 Social Security abroad
Time limits and
penalties for late
payment
Special provisions
How much do
you pay?
It is important to note that Class 2 NICs should be paid by the due
dates of 31 Januar y and 31 July each year. Class 3 NICs should be
paid by the due date which is within 42 days of the end of the tax
year they cover. Late payments may affect your right to benefits.
There are also time limits for payment and financial penalties for
late payment.
If Class 2 NICs are not paid before the end of the tax year
following the year they are for, you may have to pay at a higher
rate. For example Class 2 NICs for the 2014 to 2015 tax year must
be paid by 5 April 2016, otherwise the amount you have to pay
may increase. The later you pay the NICs, the more you might
have to pay. If you reach State Pension age after 5 April 2016,
time-limits for payment of Class 2 NICs have been extended.
Go to www.gov.uk for more information.
If Class 3 NICs are paid more than 2 years after the end of the tax
year for which they are for, you may have to pay at a higher rate.
For example Class 3 NICs for the 2014 to 2015 tax year must be
paid by 5 April 2017, otherwise the amount you have to pay may
increase. The later you pay the NICs, the more you might have
to pay.
We cannot normally accept the payment of Class 2 or Class 3 NICs
after the end of the sixth tax year after the tax year in which they
were due.
Special provisions apply if you reach UK State Pension age
between 6 April 2008 and 5 April 2015 and are not expecting to
receive a full UK basic State Pension. If these circumstances apply
to you, and if you meet certain other conditions, you may be able
to improve your basic State Pension by paying up to 6 extra years
of Class 3 NICs for years going back to 1975.
For more information, go to www.gov.uk/voluntar y-national-
insurance-contributions
These special provisions don’t apply to voluntary Class 2 NICs.
The rates for UK NICs are the same whether you live in the UK or
abroad. For more information on NICs rates, go to
www.gov.uk/national-insurance-rates-letters
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Direct Debit
NI38 Social Security abroad
How to pay voluntary NICs abroad
You can choose how to pay Class 2 or Class 3 NICs. Paying by
Direct Debit allows you to pay NICs directly from your UK or
Channel Islands bank or building society account.
The Direct Debit arrangement normally begins after HMRC
receives a request from you to pay by Direct Debit and continues
until you tell your bank or building society to cancel it. We will
not collect NICs for any weeks beyond State Pension age but if
you cancel your Direct Debit, remember that your NICs are
collected in arrears.
If the NICs rate changes (which usually happens ever y April) the
new amount will be debited from your account. HMRC will tell
you of the change in the amount to be collected.
If you wish to pay in this way, tick the box on form CF83 at the
back of this leaflet, fill in the Direct Debit Instruction (at the
bottom of form CF83) and return it to HMRC, International
Caseworker, Residency, Newcastle at the address on page 33.
Class 2 NICs – monthly payments will be collected monthly,
4 months in arrears. Each payment will cover either 4 or 5 weeks,
depending on the number of Sundays in the month for which the
payment is due.
Class 2 NICs – six-monthly payments will cover 26 or 27 weeks
depending on the number of Sundays in the six-month period for
which the payment is due. Collections will be made in January
and July each year.
Class 3 NICs – payments will be collected monthly in arrears.
Each payment will cover either 4 or 5 weeks, depending on the
number of Sundays in the month for which the payment is due.
All payments will be collected on or up to 3 working days after
the second Friday of each month except when bank holidays
cause a change in this arrangement. Please make sure you have
sufficient funds in your bank or building society account to cover
the amount to be collected.
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NI38 Social Security abroad
The Direct Debit Guarantee
• This Guarantee is offered by all banks and building societies that
accept instructions to pay Direct Debits
• If there are any changes to the amount , date or frequency of your Direct Debit
HM Revenue & Customs will notify you 10 working days in advance of your account
being debited or as otherwise agreed. If you request HM Revenue & Customs
to collect a payment, confirmation of the amount and date will be given to you
at the time of the request
• If an error is made in the payment of your Direct Debit , by HM Revenue & Customs
or your bank or building society you are entitled to a full and immediate refund
of the amount paid from your bank or building society
— If you receive a refund you are not entitled to, you must pay it back when
HM Revenue & Customs asks you to
• You can cancel a Direct Debit at any time by simply contacting your bank
or building society. Written confirmation may be required. Please also notify us.
Annual payment
Payments by
an agent
Payment of
arrears
Annual payment allows you to pay NICs for a complete tax year,
once a year in arrears, direct to HMRC. If you want to pay by this
method, tick the appropriate box on form CF83 at the back of this
leaflet and return to HMRC, NIC&EO International Caseworker at
the address on page 33. You will be told each year how much you
should pay in sterling and when payment is due. You can pay
direct or through your bank or building society.
You can get someone in the UK to pay your NICs for you. If you
wish to do this, tick the appropriate box on form CF83 at the
back of this leaflet and give your agent’s name and address.
Your agent can pay your NICs by Direct Debit or annual payment.
Ask your agent to wait until they receive a letter from HMRC,
NIC&EO International Caseworker before paying your NICs.
If you wish to have any arrears of Class 2 or Class 3 NICs for the
current tax year deducted by Direct Debit , please put a tick in the
appropriate box on form CF83 at the back of this leaflet.
Alternatively, if you wish to pay the arrears for the current tax
year by sterling cheque, please tick the appropriate box on the
CF83 and we will write to you with details of the amount needed
after we have received your application.
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NI38
How to pay
Volunteer
Development
Workers Class 2
NICs abroad
Social Security abroad
Volunteer Development Workers
If you are sent to work abroad in a developing countr y by a
registered charity, you may be able to choose to pay the special
Volunteer Development Workers Class 2 NICs. These NICs may
help you satisfy the conditions for contribution–based Jobseeker’s
Allowance, contribution–based Employment and Support
Allowance and Maternity Allowance and give you cover for
industrial injury or disablement suffered during your
employment abroad when you return to the UK.
You may pay Volunteer Development Workers Class 2 NICs if:
• you are ‘ordinarily resident’ in the UK (see pages 6 and 7 for
definition)
• your recruiting organisation is approved for these purposes by
HMRC Executive Committee
• the country where you are working is recognised as a developing
country by HMRC Executive Committee
The organisation that recruited you will know whether the last
2 conditions are satisfied.
Fill in form CF83 at the back of this leaflet and send it to your
recruiting organisation who will act as your agent in paying
your NICs.
Credits
NI38 Social Security abroad
If you are paying Class 2 or Class 3
NICs before going abroad
You must tell HMRC if you are going to stop paying Class 2 or
Class 3 NICs when you go abroad.
• Class 2 - you can tell us online at www.hmrc.gov.uk/stoppedtrading
If you are unable to use the online service, write to the
address below.
• Class 3 - write to
HM Revenue and Customs
PT Operations
North East England
BX9 1AN
If appropriate, tell them when your self-employment ended, what
date you are going abroad and your overseas address.
If you want to pay Class 2 or Class 3 NICs while you are abroad,
fill in and return form CF83 at the back of this leaflet.
Other ways of covering your National
Insurance record
Whilst in the UK you may be able to get credits instead of having to
pay NICs if you are:
• unemployed or unable to work because of illness or disability for
full weeks (a week for these purposes means Sunday to Saturday)
- you will normally have to attend an interview every 2 weeks at
your nearest Jobcentre Plus office (Social Security or Jobs and
Benefits Office in Northern Ireland), or send in sick notes (also
known as medical certificates) to your nearest Jobcentre to get
the credits – in Northern Ireland you should send sick notes to the
Incapacity Benefits Branch, Castle Court, Royal Avenue,
Belfast, BT1 1SB
• entitled to Maternity Allowance or Carer ’s Allowance - or if not
getting Carer’s Allowance caring for one or more disabled person(s)
for at least 20 hours per week
• entitled to Child Benefit for a child under 12
• a foster carer
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NI38
Home
Responsibilities
Protection
Social Security abroad
• caring for a child that you are related to, eg a grandchild
• entitled to Statutor y Sick Pay, Statutor y Maternity Pay, Additional
Statutory Paternity Pay, Statutory Shared Parental Pay or
Statutory Adoption Pay
• taking a course of approved training
• receiving Working Tax Credit
• required to attend jur y service and did not have earnings
at , or exceeding, the Lower Earnings Limit for employed
earners employment
• receiving a compensatory payment such as a Payment in Lieu of
Notice (PILON), or a Payment in Lieu of Remuneration (PILOR)
• a person who served a prison sentence for a conviction which has
been quashed
• between the current women’s State Pension age and age 65
(credits can be awarded automatically, but this does not apply to
any tax year during which you are abroad for more than 182
days) – these credits are being phased out and will no longer be
available after 2018
• married to or in a civil partnership with a member of HM Forces
and accompanying them on overseas assignment
For more information, go to www.gov.uk/national-insurance-credits
If you continue to get UK Child Benefit for a child under 12 while
living elsewhere in the EEA/Switzerland, credits may be available to
you. However, if you receive the equivalent of Child Benefit from
your place of residence in the EEA/Switzerland, you should see if
they can give you pension protection while you are not working.
If you get contribution-based Employment and Support Allowance,
Incapacity Benefit or Carer’s Allowance from the UK while you are
living in an EEA country or Switzerland, you may be awarded credits
instead of paying NICs.
If your opportunity to work is limited because you were looking
after a child (including as a registered foster carer) or a sick or
disabled person, Home Responsibilities Protection was available
between April 1978 and April 2010. It could make it easier to get a
basic State Pension. See form CF411 'Application for Home
Responsibilities Protection (HRP)’.
Home Responsibilities Protection was available if you were abroad, if
you continued to be entitled to UK Child Benefit.
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NI38 Social Security abroad
From 6 April 2010 Home Responsibilities Protection was replaced
by weekly NICs for people getting Child Benefit for a child under 12,
foster carers and people caring for at least 20 hours a week for one
(or more) sick or severely disabled person or persons.
Additional information
If you are married or in a civil partnership and you reach State
Pension age before 6 April 2016, you may be able to use your
spouse’s or civil partner’s National Insurance record to increase your
basic State Pension to a maximum of around 65% of the full rate of
basic State Pension (if you have less than this based on your own
National Insurance record). For this to apply, both you and your
spouse or civil partner must have reached State Pension age. If
you’re a married man, a civil partner, or a woman married to a
woman (except a woman whose spouse legally changed gender
from male to female during the marriage), your partner must also
have a date of birth of 6 April 1950 or later.
For information about the current State Pension, go to
www.gov.uk/browse/working/state-pension
If you reach State Pension age on or after 6 April 2016, you will not
be able to increase your State Pension using your spouse’s or civil
partner’s National Insurance record. You may be able to qualify
under special rules if you had a married woman’s reduced-rate
election and your election was still valid at some point in the
35-year period ending on 5 April, before you reach State Pension
age. For more information, go to www.gov.uk/new-state-pension
If you are a married woman, under current law, you may be able to
use your husband’s National Insurance record to increase your basic
State Pension if your own record is not good enough. From April
2010, a married man’s or civil partner’s basic State Pension can be
based partly or wholly on the National Insurance record of their
wife or civil partner if they have both reached State Pension age
and their wife or civil partner was born on or after 6 April 1950 and
is entitled to basic State Pension. Changes to the State Pension will
af fect these rules. For more information, go to
www.gov.uk/changes-state-pension
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NI38 Social Security abroad
What NICs are
needed?
For more information on State Pension issues, see leaflet PM2
'State Pensions - your guide’, or go to
www.gov.uk/government/publications
Some married women and widows pay reduced rate NICs because
in the past they made a married woman’s reduced rate election
(that is, they chose to pay Class 1 NICs at a reduced rate or not to
pay Class 2 NICs if self-employed). All the time that election is in
force, they cannot pay Class 3 NICs, claim credits (unless they are
a widow) or get Home Responsibilities Protection, or claim the
benefits listed on page 5. This election ends when a woman is
divorced or stops being a qualifying widow or lapses
automatically where someone is not earning enough to pay NICs
and is not self-employed for 2 complete tax years. However, a
woman can also choose to revoke her married woman’s election.
The same rules apply abroad as in the UK. Go to
www.gov.uk/reduced-national-insurance-married-women
Social security benefits that depend on
your NICs
There are several rules governing social security benefits. These
are explained in a series of leaflets on individual benefits. You
should read the leaflet on the benefit you are interested in. These
leaflets are available on the Department for Work and Pensions
website. Go to www.gov.uk/government/publications
To qualify for most of the benefits mentioned in this section,
you need to have NICs on your National Insurance record during
the ‘relevant tax years’.
The relevant tax years are normally the last 2 complete tax years
before the calendar year in which you claim benefit. For example,
if you claim benefit in October 2012, the relevant tax years would
be 6 April 2009 to 5 April 2010 and 6 April 2006 to
5 April 2011. The relevant tax years for basic State Pension and
bereavement benefits are different.
Because Class 1 NICs are based on earnings, you cannot just count
the number of weeks you have paid. NICs conditions are based on
the number of weeks NICs you would need to pay if your weekly
earnings were at the Lower Earnings Limit during the tax year.
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NI38
Contribution-based
Jobseeker’s
Allowance
Contribution-based
Employment and
Support Allowance
Maternity
Allowance
State Pension
Social Security abroad
If your earnings are normally above the Lower Earnings Limit , you
will need to have paid fewer weeks NICs to have reached the
right amount.
For the following benefits, we detail the amounts and type of
NICs you need to have paid. This should help you decide if you
need to pay voluntary NICs while you are away. We also give
details about getting benefits abroad and the rules when you
return to the UK.
For more information on contribution-based Jobseeker’s
Allowance, ask at your nearest Jobcentre Plus office (in Northern
Ireland, your nearest Social Security or Jobs and Benefits Office).
For more information, go to www.gov.uk
Contribution-based Employment and Support Allowance (ESA) is a
social security benefit for people who have an illness or disability.
You may be able to get ESA if you have an illness or disability, and
you are unemployed, or you are self-employed, or you work for
an employer but you cannot get Statutor y Sick Pay (SSP), or you
have been getting SSP but it has now stopped. If you get
contribution-based ESA and are planning to go abroad, you must
contact Jobcentre Plus (in Northern Ireland customers should
contact the ESA Centre, James House, Cromac Avenue, Belfast)
immediately to check if your benefit is affected.
Maternity Allowance (MA) is principally based on your
employment and earnings (see page 27) but payments of
Class 1 NICs abroad can help you qualify for MA on your
return to the UK. For information about Volunteer Development
Workers and Class 2 NICs see page 16.
If you move abroad to work before you reach State Pension age,
you might not be gaining qualifying years towards your State
Pension to a State Pension (the basic State Pension, any
additional State Pension and new State Pension from April 2016)
for those years. However, this depends on your particular
circumstances (for example whether it is a UK company you work
for or a foreign company).
If you go to live abroad permanently, you will not get a yearly
increase in your State Pension (including your additional State
Pension) unless you live in an EEA country (including Switzerland),
or a country with which the UK has a reciprocal agreement that
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NI38
How do I get an
estimate of my
State Pension?
Social Security abroad
allows for these increases (known as ‘upratings’). For more
information on which countries these are, and how UK State Pension
is paid to people abroad, go to www.gov.uk
If you have just come to the UK, or are returning to the UK after a
period abroad, the rules for some benefits are different , even if you
are a UK national. To find out more, go to www.gov.uk
If you plan to live abroad when you retire, the pension you get from
an occupational scheme will increase each year in line with the
scheme rules and current legislation.
You can get a State Pension statement. This will give you an estimate
of how much State Pension you may get when you reach your State
Pension age. This could help you to decide whether you are saving
enough money to cover your retirement.
If you live in the UK, there are 3 ways in which you can get an
estimate of your State Pension.
• Online, go to www.gov.uk/state-pension-statement
• Phone the Future Pension Centre on 0345 3000 168.
For security and quality purposes, your call may be monitored and
recorded. If you use a textphone, phone 0345 300 0169.
Lines are open Monday to Friday 8am to 6pm
• Use application form BR19. Fill it in and send it to:
Future Pension Centre, The Pension Service, Tyneview Park, Whitley
Road, NEWCASTLE UPON TYNE, NE98 1BA.
If you live outside the UK, there are 2 ways you can get information
about your State Pension.
• Phone the Future Pension Centre on
+44 191 218 3600. If you use a textphone, phone
+44 (0) 191 218 2051. Lines are open Monday to Friday
8am to 6pm. For security and quality purposes your call may be
monitored and recorded.
• Use application form BR19. Fill it in and send it to:
Future Pension Centre, The Pension Service, Tyneview Park, Whitley
Road, NEWCASTLE UPON TYNE, NE98 1BA, UK.
If you reach your State Pension age on or after 5 April 2016, you
should wait and get a State Pension statement based on the rules
of the new State Pension before you decide whether to pay
voluntar y NICs.
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NI38
Bereavement
benefits
War pensions
Social Security abroad
Benefits and pensions for widows,
widowers and surviving civil partners
If your husband, wife or civil partner has died, you may be able to
get help by claiming bereavement benefits.
Bereavement benefits are available to both men and women.
For more information on bereavement benefits, please contact
your local Jobcentre Plus office or go to www.gov.uk
We want to make sure that you and your family get the right
help, at the right time, in the right way.
There are also other benefits which you might be entitled to.
Please contact your local Jobcentre Plus office or go to
www.gov.uk
For more information on what to do after a death, go to
www.gov.uk/after-a-death/overview
War disablement pensions and war widow’s or widower’s pensions
can usually be paid anywhere in the world and your right to a war
pension does not depend on the payment of NICs.
If in the past, you received a war widow’s or widower’s pension
which was withdrawn when you remarried, that pension may
be restored if you have become widowed again, divorced or
legally separated.
If you are receiving a war pension and intend to live permanently
abroad, you should inform the Veterans Agency as soon as
possible at the following address:
Service Personnel and Veterans Agency
Norcross
Thornton
Cleveleys
LANCASHIRE
FY5 3WP
Helpline 0800 169 2277. If you are phoning from outside the UK
dial the International Code then 44 1253 866 043.
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NI38 Social Security abroad
Social security benefits that do not depend
on NICs
Your right to any of the benefits listed on pages 24 to 29 does not
depend on your NICs record, but if you are getting any of these
benefits in the UK, you must tell the office paying your benefit or
your nearest Jobcentre Plus of fice before you leave the country.
You may be able to continue getting benefit abroad in some
cases. If you are going to an EEA country or Switzerland or one of
the countries where special arrangements have been made (see
pages 2 and 3), you will need to go to www.gov.uk for
up-to-date information. The rules below apply if you are going to
any other part of the world.
If you are moving permanently to a country outside the EEA,
Attendance
Switzerland, Isle of Man or the Channel Islands, you will no longer
Allowance
be entitled to Attendance Allowance. If you are going abroad
temporarily for less than 26 weeks, you can continue getting
Attendance Allowance. This period can be longer if the purpose of
your visit is to get medical treatment for your disability.
Attendance Allowance and Disability Living Allowance (DLA) are
only paid for the first 13 weeks you are abroad. For more
information, go to www.gov.uk
If you are moving permanently to a countr y outside the EEA,
Disability Living
Switzerland, Isle of Man or the Channel Islands, you will no longer
Allowance
be entitled to DLA. If you are going abroad temporarily for less
than 26 weeks, you can continue getting DLA. This period can be
longer if the purpose of your visit is to get medical treatment for
your disability. For more information, go to www.gov.uk
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NI38 Social Security abroad
Child Benefit
Guardian’s
Allowance
Working Tax
Credit
Child Tax Credit
Income-based
Jobseeker’s
Allowance
Income-related
Employment and
Support Allowance
Child Benefit is money paid to you by the Government if you are
bringing up a child or young person in the UK.
For more information or help, phone the Child Benefit Helpline on
0300 200 3100 or go to www.gov.uk/child-benefit
Guardian’s Allowance is a tax-free payment for people who are
bringing up children whose parents have died. In certain
circumstances you may qualify for Guardian’s Allowance where
only one parent has died.
For more information or help, phone the Child Benefit Helpline on
0300 200 3100 or go to www.gov.uk/guardians-allowance
Working Tax Credit is a payment to top-up earnings or profits of
low paid working people (whether employed or self-employed)
including those who do not have children.
For more information or help, phone the Tax Credits Helpline on
0345 300 3900 or go to www.gov.uk
Child Tax Credit is money paid to you by the Government if you
are living in the UK and bringing up a child or young person.
For more information or help, phone the Tax Credits Helpline on
0345 300 3900 or go to www.gov.uk
For more information on income-based Jobseeker’s Allowance, ask
at your nearest Jobcentre Plus of fice (in Northern Ireland, your
nearest Social Security or Jobs and Benefits Office).
Income-related Employment and Support Allowance cannot be
paid to you abroad except under special circumstances. You must
contact your nearest Jobcentre Plus office if you are going
abroad (in Northern Ireland customers should contact the ESA
Centre, James House, Cromac Avenue, Belfast), and they will be
able to advise you whether or not you can continue to receive
this benefit.
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NI38 Social Security abroad
Industrial
Injuries
Disablement
Benefits
Carer’s Allowance
Income Suppor t
The Industrial Injuries Scheme provides non-contributor y no-fault
benefits for disablement because of an accident at work, or
because of one of over 70 prescribed diseases known to be a risk
from certain jobs. The benefits payable under the scheme are
described as Industrial Injuries Disablement Benefits (IIDB).
Benefits are paid to employees who are liable to pay Income Tax
under PAYE on wages, salaries or fees. They are not payable
where the accident or disease was contracted during
self-employment. If you are being paid an IIDB and you are going
abroad, you must tell the of fice which deals with your claim
before you leave to check if this is affected.
Customers who live abroad and who have a quer y about IIDB
should contact the International Pension Centre (IPC) in
Newcastle on +44 191 21 87650. For more information about the
IPC, go to www.gov.uk/international-pension-centre
Information about IIDB can be found in DB1 'A guide to Industrial
Injuries Disablement Benefits - April 2013’.
If you are moving permanently to a countr y outside the EEA,
Switzerland, Isle of Man or the Channel Islands, you will no longer
be entitled to Carer’s Allowance. If you are going abroad
temporarily for less than 4 weeks, you can continue getting
Carer’s Allowance. If you are going abroad temporarily with the
disabled person you are caring for, you can continue getting
Carer’s Allowance for as long as their Disability Living Allowance,
Attendance Allowance or Constant Attendance Allowance
continues. For more information go to www.gov.uk
Income Support cannot be paid to you abroad except under
special circumstances. Please tell your nearest Jobcentre Plus
office (in Northern Ireland your nearest Social Security or Jobs
and Benefits office) when you are going abroad. They will be able
to inform you whether or not you can continue to receive
Income Support. For more information contact your Jobcentre
Plus office (in Northern Ireland your nearest Social Security or
Jobs and Benefits Office) or go to www.gov.uk
If you are entitled to any benefit abroad, you may be entitled to
an increase for an adult living with you abroad or in the UK.
26