National Insurance

National Insurance

National Insurance

Traditionally HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) has notified individuals of their National Insurance number for the first time by sending them a plastic National Insurance number card.

Last year, as part of the Government’s Spending Challenge, the Chancellor announced that HMRC would stop issuing National Insurance number cards and send letters instead (saving £820k a year).

HMRC stopped issuing replacement National Insurance number cards in October 2010. Since then, if you ask for a reminder of your National Insurance number you get a letter confirming it instead.

From July 2011, HMRC will stop issuing cards to adults. If you’re an adult and need a National Insurance number for the first time, you will receive your number on a letter from the Department for Work and Pensions (Jobcentre Plus).

However, if you are approaching age 16 and are eligible to receive a number automatically, you will still be sent a National Insurance number card. This will continue until later in the year.

Millions of people will still have a National Insurance number card. As the cards are phased out, there will be growing numbers of people who will have a letter instead. If you are an employer you will need to bear this in mind when taking on a new employee.

You do not need to have a National Insurance number card – it is your number that is important.

Find out more about how to get a National Insurance number, when you’ll need one and what to do if you don’t receive yours or forget or lose it by following the link below.

Applying for a National Insurance number

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