There are various documents given to UK citizens for easy identification. A national insurance number is one of the mandatory ones. If you’re a citizen born in the UK, this number will be issued to you just before you turn sixteen. If you moved to the UK later in your life, this number should be on your biometric resident permit.
So, it’s evident that this is an important document. What happens if you lose it? How can you find it? Will have to move to an undisclosed location?
Well, lucky for you, here’s a comprehensive guide to guide you through the national insurance number1 and how to find it.
All About the National Insurance Number
The national insurance number is a code issued to every citizen in the UK before they turn sixteen. The eight-digit code consists of two letters, six numbers, and a letter, for example, RT456789Y. It’s typically a form of identification and a must-have if you want to pursue higher education on a student loan, work legally, and even vote in the country.
You’ll also need to provide this number when setting up a pension fund, whether personally or through your employer. The pension provider will require this number to see if you have any other pension plans. Additionally, it’ll allow them to know if you’ve been making contributions to the National Insurance2 to determine whether you’re eligible for the state pension.
Where to Find Your National Insurance Number
If you lost your national insurance number, or don’t know your NI number, there are various ways you can get it:
On Your Documents
Your official documents, such as payslips, P603, tax, and pension-related forms, should have this number. If you, however, recently moved to the UK, the number will be on the back of your biometric resident permit.
If you can’t locate any of the documents mentioned earlier, then your next option is logging online. It’s easy for people who have personal tax accounts. All you have to do is to login into your account hen check to see your NI number.
Calling the HMRC Hotline
The HMRC4 national insurance has a hotline, which allows you to speak to a customer care attendant. The attendants will ask you some questions to verify your identity, and if you answer these questions to their satisfaction, your national insurance number will be sent to you by mail. The hotline number is 0300 200 3500.
Requesting By Post
If none of the above options appeals to you, or you are having trouble answering the questions asked by the customer care agents, you need to fill out a CA5403 form. You’ll then mail this to the address listed on the document.
Your national insurance number is a form of identification. Therefore you should know it, maybe even by heart, and keep it safe. Having this number and making the required contributions to the national insurance will make you eligible for the state pension. That, combined with a private pension scheme from a reliable provider, will set you up nicely for your retirement.
However, since you’re human, you might have lost the NI number. When you do, don’t start panicking and planning to relocate to the islands. By checking online or calling the HMRC, you can find it and continue making your monthly pension contributions. It’s never that serious!
You can either find your national insurance number online or through calling the HMRC hotline. If going online is your best option, you can either log into your tax account or use the HMRC app to check your national insurance number.
You’ll need to authenticate your identity by answering a couple of questions.
In case you’ve lost and can’t remember your NI number, there are several places you can check. Your 960 or 945 forms, payslips or bank statements should have this number written on them. Tax-related documents from the HMRC will also have these details.
If you can’t locate these documents, you should fill in a CA5403 form and mail this and two types of identification to the address listed on the record. Logging in to your account should also allow you to find your national insurance number.
Your national insurance number is a form of identification. It’s, therefore, on several of your documents, including payslips, 960 or 945 forms, bank statements, letters related to taxation, or tax credit from the HMRC.
If you’re not a resident of the UK by birth, the number will be on the back of your biometric resident permit.
To get any state pension, you’ll need to make the required contributions to the national insurance for at least ten years. For you to qualify for the full state pension, however, you need to make these payments for at least 35 years.