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HMRC internal manual

National Insurance Manual

Earnings Periods: Earnings only occasionally reach Lower Earnings Limit (LEL)

When earnings only occasionally reach the LEL, determine the earnings period by usingthe interval at which the employer made all the payments, not just those reaching the LEL.


An employee is regularly paid each week according to the number of hours worked. Everyother week the employee works twice as many hours and his earnings exceed the LEL. Inthose weeks where fewer hours are worked the employee’s earnings are below the LEL.Since the employee is paid every week, his earnings period is a week and each set ofearnings is subject to the weekly LEL and PT.