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HMRC internal manual

National Insurance Manual

Special Cases: International: People going to or coming from abroad: Introduction: What is a Reciprocal Agreement?

A Reciprocal Agreement country is:

A country outside the EC with which the United Kingdom (UK) has a bi-lateral convention on Social Security matters.

The Social Security Conventions are more commonly referred to as Reciprocal Agreements -

There are two types of Social Security Conventions:

  • A full Social Security Agreement which may include some benefit and health care provisions; or
  • A Double Contributions Convention (DCC) - these relate to contribution matters only and have no benefit or health care provisions.

The countries with whom the UK has Double Contribution Conventions are:

  • Canada
  • Japan
  • Republic of Korea

Reciprocal Agreements are made between two countries to:

Give equality of treatment to people who are insured in one country and live or work in another country; and

Ensure that a person is not liable to pay Social Security Contributions in both countries for the same period.

Each agreement is different

For a full list of all the countries with who the UK have agreements see NIM33012 

The UK also has Reciprocal Agreements with some countries in the EC. For a full list of these countries see NIM33008.

Note: In situations where it is not possible to apply European legislation then the Reciprocal Agreements may apply.