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HMRC internal manual

National Insurance Manual

Class 2 National Insurance contributions: general information: breaks in self-employment

Regulation 3 of, and Schedule 2 to, the Social Security (Categorisation of Earners) Regulations 1978 (SI 1978 No 1689); Regulation 3 of, and Schedule 2 to, the Social Security (Categorisation of Earners) (Northern Ireland) Regulations 1978 (SI 1978 No 401)

A person’s self-employment is treated as continuing unless and until they are no longer ordinarily self-employed. This means that, barring the exceptions covered in NIM70600, they remain liable or entitled to pay Class 2 NICs during:

  • temporary breaks in their work, for example holiday periods - including holiday periods spent abroad
  • temporary periods without work

A person who is self-employed even for a few hours each week is liable to pay Class 2 NICs, whether this is their sole source of employment, or in addition to any work as an employee. Such persons will not be liable to pay Class 2 NICs if their relevant profits from self-employment are below the small profits threshold.

For more information, see NIM70300.