A guide to National Insurance and State Pension eligibility


Introduced in 2016, the new State Pension is a payment based on your National Insurance record when you get to State Pension age.

To receive it, you must typically have 10 qualifying years on your National Insurance record.

If you were contracted out prior to 6 April 2016, you may receive less than the new full State Pension.

If you do not have a National Insurance record before 6 April 2016, you must have 35 qualifying years to get the new full State Pension.

Who is eligible?

If you are a man, you are eligible for the basic State Pension if you were born before 6 April 1951.

If you are a woman, you must have been born before 6 April 1953.

However, if you were born on or later than these dates, you must claim the new State Pension.

Qualifying years

 You pay National Insurance and obtain a qualifying year if you are:

You could be entitled to National Insurance credits if you are unable to work. This could be due to an illness or disability, or if you are a carer.

Gaps in National Insurance record

 If you have a gap in your National Insurance record, you have until 5 April 2023 to make up for the gaps between 2006 and 2016.

After this, you will not be able to make up for any losses for these years.

Making up for a full-year shortfall will work out as “getting it back” in three years of state pension.

You can access a State Pension forecast to find out how much State Pension you could get, when you can get it, and how to boost it.

Additionally, to check if your record has gaps, you can apply for a National Insurance statement.

Need advice on National Insurance and State Pension? Contact our team today.