A National Insurance (NI) NI number is a personal number issued by the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) and is used:

a) To record a person’s NI contributions and credited contributions;
b) As a reference number for the whole social security system.

NI contributions are deducted automatically from your earnings, unless you are exempt from making contributions.

New staff

You should supply your NI number as soon as possible after commencement of employment.  Failure to do so may result in salary payments being temporarily suspended until the College is in receipt of this information. 

If you are from overseas and have not previously obtained an NI number you are legally obliged to apply for this number and to register for NI purposes on commencing employment with the College, unless you are exempt from doing so (see below).

When applying for an NI number two routes are available, which route you use will depend on your specific circumstances.


Applying for an NI number

Non EU nationals

If you have not been automatically allocated an NI number with your Biometric Residence Permit, you will be able to use the postal system provided that you have a visa or residence permit. To request an application form you should telephone the DWP Contact Centre on their new Freephone number 0800 141 2309

EU nationals

You will need to attend an Evidence of Identity interview at a Job Centre, taking along with you your passport or other form of identification.  To arrange an interview, you should telephone the DWP Contact Centre on their new Freephone number 0800 141 2309.

When you don't need to pay

You don’t need to pay National Insurance or get a number if you have either:

  • Portable Document A1, E101 or E102 that proves you pay National Insurance in another European Economic Area (EEA) country
  • a certificate from a country that has a bilateral agreement on social security with the UK

Ask the social security authority in your country for the document or certificate.  

A successful application means that you can continue paying National Insurance Contributions (NICs) in your home country and do not also have to pay NICs in the UK.

If you do not hold the A1 (or E101) certificate you will be required to register for an NI number and pay NI contributions on the same basis as an individual who normally lives and works in the UK.

Further information is available from the UK Government's website.

Further information

Details of how to obtain a National Insurance number can be obtained from the Department for Work and Pensions. Further information on National Insurance for individuals coming to the UK can be obtained from HM Revenue and Customs.