State pension UK: How to ensure voluntary NI contributions boost income – full details

State pension payments require at least 10 years of qualifying NI contributions, with 35 years needed for the full amount of £179.60 per week. To find out how much a person may receive from their state pension, a forecast can be requested from the Government’s website.

Once this has been done, people will then be able to apply for a NI statement from HMRC to see if their record has any gaps.

Where gaps occur, people may be able to pay voluntary contributions to fill them.

This will need to be considered carefully, however, as voluntary contributions do not always increase a state pension.

To see if voluntary contributions would impact a state pension record, the Future Pension Centre will need to be contacted for guidance.

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This rises to £15.40 per week for class three contributions.

State pensions themselves can only be claimed from the state pension age, which is currently sitting at 66 for most people.

This will be increasing to 67 between 2026 and 2048.

Beyond this, it will rise to 67 by 2046.

Initial payments, so long as they’re claimed as soon as possible, usually arrive within five weeks of reaching state pension age.

Beyond this, a payment will be received once every four weeks.

The actual payment day that a person gets their income will depend on their NI number.

The last two digits of the number will determine when the income comes through, as detailed below:

  • 00 to 19 – Monday
  • 20 to 39 – Tuesday
  • 40 to 59 – Wednesday
  • 60 to 79 – Thursday
  • 80 to 99 – Friday
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