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HMRC internal manual

National Insurance Manual

Class 3 NICs: Restrictions on the right to pay: precluded Class 3 NICs: tax year in which the person reaches state pension age and subsequent years

Regulation 49(2A) Social Security (Contributions) Regulations 2001

Section 126 of, and Part 1 of Schedule 4 to, Pensions Act 1995

Article 123 of, and Part 1 of Schedule 2 to, Pensions (Northern Ireland) Order 1995As explained in

NIM25001, a person is not entitled to pay (ie, is precluded from paying) Class 3 NICs in certain circumstances. Subject to the qualification in NIM25015, one of those is that they cannot pay for:

  • the tax year in which they reach state pension age; and
  • any subsequent tax year.

ExampleMs D was born on 23rd November 1941. She reached state pension age (age 60) on 23rd November 2001. For the purposes of calculating her State Pension entitlement, the final tax year taken into account was 2000/01.

Up to and including that year, Ms D has only nine qualifying years. So she is one qualifying year short of the 10 needed to give her entitlement to the minimum 25% basic State Pension.

The only way she can get the extra qualifying year if she pays Class 3 NICs for the 2001/02 tax year or any year after that. But as that tax year is the one in which she was age 60, she is precluded from paying for that year and any year after it.

For details of the other circumstances in which a person is precluded from paying Class 3 NICs, see NIM25006 – NIM25013 and NIM25015 – NIM25017.