National Insurance Contributions (NIC) – Rates and Allowances 2018/19

  • Employees start paying Class 1 NIC from age 16 (if sufficient earnings).
  • Employers pay Class 1 NIC in accordance with the table below.
  • Employer NIC for employees under the age of 21 and apprentices under the age of 25 is reduced from the normal rate of 13.8% to 0% up to the Upper Secondary Threshold.
  • Employees’ Class 1 NIC stop when they reach their State Pension age. The employer’s contribution continues.

Employees – Class 1 – 2018/19

Earnings per week %
Up to £162 Nil*
£162.01 – £892 12
Over £892 2

* Entitlement to state pension and other contribution-based benefits is retained for earnings between £116 and £162 per week.

Employers – Class 1 – 2018/19

Earnings per week %
Up to £162 Nil
Over £162 13.8
Upper Secondary Threshold (for under 21s and apprentices under 25)
Up to £892
0%

Other National Insurance payable by employers

Class 1A – 13.8% on broadly all taxable benefits provided to employees

Class 1B – 13.8% on PAYE Settlement Agreements

Self-employed – Class 2 and 4

  • A self-employed person starts paying Class 2 and Class 4 NIC from 16 or over (if sufficient profits)
  • Class 2 NIC stop when a person reaches State Pension age
  • Class 4 NIC stop from the start of the tax year after the one in which the person reaches State Pension age.

Self-employed – Class 2 – 2018/19

Flat rate per week £2.95
Small Profits Threshold* £6,205 per year

* No Class 2 is due if the amount of trading profits assessable to income tax and Class 4 NIC is below this figure. However, a person might decide to carry on paying class 2 voluntarily to accrue entitlement to the State Pension and entitlement to other benefits.  

Class 4 – 2018/19

Annual profits %
Up to £8,424 Nil
£8,424.01 – £46,350 9
Over 46,350 2

Class 3

  • A person needs 35 years (30 years if State Pension age is before 6 April 2016) of NIC to get a full State Pension.
  • Class 3 voluntary contributions can be paid to fill or avoid gaps in a NI record.

Class 3 – 2018/19

Flat rate per week £14.65