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HMRC internal manual

National Insurance Manual

Special Cases: Married Women: Background: Position from 6 April 1975: The law

Following the re-construction of the National Insurance (RNI) scheme on 6.4.75. Class 1contributions became earnings related and the record keeping procedures of the Departmentbecame fully computerised. Contributions were deducted by the employer under PAYEarrangements.

Class 2 contributions remained at a flat-rate. Class 3 contributions became voluntary andalso remained payable at a flat-rate.

Where a woman had an election not to pay National Insurance contributions she waspermitted to retain the election under regulations 91 and 100 of the Social Security(Contributions) Regulations 1975. This meant that the the election not to pay was treatedas an election to pay reduced rate contributions. Such contributions were payable at 2% ofthe married woman’s gross earnings whereas full rate contributions were payable at5.5.%. The percentage rates were increased in later years.

The two most common categories of reduced rate contributions are category B and categoryE. Reduced rate contributions do not count for any benefits.