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Check Your National Insurance Record

The government is giving taxpayers more time to fill gaps in their national insurance contribution (NIC) record, and so maximise the amount of state pension they will be eligible to receive. You now have until 5 April 2025 to buy back any missing national insurance years from 2006 to 2016.

Normally you can only buy back up to six years, but when the new state pension was introduced, transitional arrangements were put in place to allow people to go back further.

Many people don’t realise that they have years for which they didn’t pay NIC for the full 52 weeks, and so have a gap in their NIC record. If that’s the case for you, then you won’t be entitled to the full state pension.

Individuals who reach state pension age on or after 6 April 2016 need 35 full years of NIC in order to receive the maximum state retirement pension.

How to check your record

You can check your NIC record in your online personal tax account. This will also provide an estimate of the state retirement pension you should receive.

If you have any gaps, first check if HMRC’s records are correct, then consider if it will be worth making Class 3 voluntary NICs to make good missing years.