1. Overview

You may be able to get National Insurance credits if you’re not paying National Insurance, eg when you’re claiming benefits because you’re ill or unemployed.

Credits can help to fill gaps in your National Insurance record, to make sure you qualify for certain benefits including the State Pension.

Check your National Insurance record for gaps.

Get credits

Check if you’re eligible for credits - you’ll either get them automatically or you’ll have to apply for them.

You need to wait until the tax year is over before you can apply for credits for that tax year. The tax year is from 6 April to 5 April.

You get one of these types of credits if you’re eligible:

  • Class 1 - these count towards your State Pension, bereavement benefits and some other benefits, eg Jobseeker’s Allowance
  • Class 3 - these count towards your State Pension and bereavement benefits only

Check your credits

Check your National Insurance record to find out if you got credits. If you applied for credits but they’re wrong on your record, contact the office where you applied.

Call the helpline if you have questions about National Insurance credits.