National Insurance Number
What is a National Insurance (NI) number?
When you start work your employer will ask for your National Insurance Number. This number gives your employer and the tax office a unique identification of you.
It will look something like this: AB 12 34 56 A (example only)
Where do I get a National Insurance (NI) number?
If you are from the UK, you will have been allocated a NI number from the age of 16.
If you have lost it then contact the National Insurance Registrations Helpline on 0845 915 7006 or complete and return form CA5403 (more information)
National Insurance Contributions (NICs)
Payment of National Insurance contributions increases your entitlement to certain social security benefits, including the State Pension. The amount of contributions that you pay depends on how much you earn. Detailed information on NI contributions is provided by HM Revenue & Customs.
If you are an international student, you will not have a NI number. You should apply for a NI number if you have started, or are about to start work. To make an appointment for an interview, telephone JobCentre Plus on 0845 600 0643.
You will only be given a National Insurance Number if it is necessary. Therefore you will need to prove that you are actively seeking employment or have obtained a job. You do not need the number in order to start working in the UK. While you are waiting for your number to be issued you will be given a temporary number and you will be able to make National Insurance contributions.
The NASES website provides further information on how to apply for a NI number.
Visit the What am I entitled to? section for more information for international students.
See more relevant employment legislation