National Insurance

How much you pay

The amount of National Insurance you pay depends on your employment status and how much you earn.

You can see rates for past tax years.

If you’re employed

You pay Class 1 National Insurance contributions. The rates for most people for the 2016 to 2017 tax year are:

Your pay Class 1 National Insurance rate
£155 to £827 a week (£672 to £3,583 a month) 12%
Over £827 a week (£3,583 a month) 2%

You’ll pay less if:

  • you’re a married woman or widow with a valid ‘certificate of election’
  • you’re deferring National Insurance because you’ve got more than one job

Employers pay a different rate of National Insurance depending on their employees’ category letters.

How to pay

You pay National Insurance with your tax. Your employer will take it from your wages before you get paid. Your payslip will show your contributions.

If you’re a director of a limited company, you may also be your own employee and pay Class 1 National Insurance through your PAYE payroll.

If you’re self-employed

You pay Class 2 and Class 4 National Insurance, depending on your profits. Most people pay both through Self-Assessment.

If you’re employed and self-employed

You might be an employee but also do self-employed work. In this case your employer will deduct your Class 1 National Insurance from your wages, and you have to pay Class 2 and 4 payments for your self-employed work.

How much you pay depends on your combined income from all your jobs. HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) will let you know how much National Insurance is due after you’ve filed your Self-Assessment tax return.

Directors, landlords and share fishermen

There are different National Insurance rules for: