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Posted Thu, 05 Oct 2023 08:25:56 GMT by HMRC Admin 20
Hi Ian Macdonald,

If you would like to pay voluntary National Insurance contributions for the period that you are overseas, then please complete and return our CF83 application form
after reading leaflet NI38 ‘Social Security Abroad’.  The NI38 and CF83 can be found at the following weblink:  Social Security abroad: NI38
Voluntary class 2 contributions, currently £3.45 a week, maintain a National Insurance account for State Pension purposes as well as for claims to Employment & Support Allowance made in the United Kingdom.  
Voluntary class 2 contributions may be paid as long as the individual is employed or self-employed overseas and were normally employed or self-employed in the UK before their departures.  There are additional criteria but our International Team will be able to assess this for you.
Voluntary class 3 contributions, currently £17.45 a week, maintain a National Insurance account for State Pension purposes.  You do not have to be employed or self-employed to pay this class and additional criteria is involved but again our International Team will assess this for you.

Thank you.
Posted Thu, 05 Oct 2023 08:32:28 GMT by HMRC Admin 20
Hi JoeMcGilly,

If you call our National Insurance Helpline on 0300 200 3500 they will be able to check whether your direct debit may be restarted to collect your voluntary National Insurance contributions without the need to complete a new application form.

Thank you.
Posted Thu, 05 Oct 2023 09:14:41 GMT by
You do not answer the phone. That is the reason I’m on this forum. I don’t know why you have stopped my payments. I need you to resolve this.
Posted Fri, 13 Oct 2023 09:27:53 GMT by HMRC Admin 20
Hi JoeMcGilly,

Sorry for the problems that you have experienced trying to speak to the National Insurance Helpline.  The Helpline is open from 8am to 6pm Monday to Friday.  They will be able to help you with your query about the direct debit.
If you prefer you may wish to write to us and we’ll be able to help you further.  Our postal address is:  
HM Revenue & Customs,
PT Operations North East England
BX9 1AN,
United Kingdom.

Thank you.
Posted Sat, 09 Dec 2023 19:08:37 GMT by
Hello, I have live abroad since 1992, and am Class 2. I have received my state pension forecast in feb 2023, stating that I have 9 years contributions and need a minimum of 10. In the letter, there is no information on what voluntary contribution I can make. I was contracted out decades ago. How many prior years can I pay ? I read that the payment deadline for years including and prior to 2016-2017 has now expired. Many thanks in advance
Posted Wed, 13 Dec 2023 20:12:48 GMT by
Hi,I have just received a letter from Hmrc accepting my application to pay voluntary class 2 nics.I have 12 full years so would need to repay 23 years to qualify for the full pension but the letter I received does not state how many years I can repay.It does give a list of the last six years and the rates that apply to them.Is this the maximum I can pay or do I calculate the 23 years and pay that amount.The information on form N138 states that years 2006 to 2016 are paid at the 2023 rates.Am I correct on this as the letter is a little confusing.TIA
Posted Wed, 03 Jan 2024 02:21:28 GMT by Keith
Question for HRMC: I have lived in Canada since 1988 (working continuously since then). I have 6 full years of NI contributions prior to 1988. I understand that I should read N138 and submit CF83. A Quick Look at CF83 makes me think it is aimed at people about to move, rather than those long since moved...but this is the correct form for my circumstances? Once I complete CF83… will I eventually receive a letter outlining exactly what years I can make NI contributions for; the Class of NI contributions; the total payable; and how to pay? Will I also be advised how any possible NI contributions will benefit/impact my future State Pension? Cheers.
Posted Wed, 03 Jan 2024 11:13:02 GMT by HMRC Admin 20
Hi harry macdonald,
It is currently possible to pay voluntary National Insurance contributions from the 2006-2007 tax year.  
If you’d like to pay voluntary National Insurance contributions whilst overseas, please read our leaflet NI38 ‘Social Security Abroad’ and then complete and return the CF83 application form which are available via this link Social Security abroad: NI38
Thank you.
Posted Wed, 03 Jan 2024 12:39:25 GMT by HMRC Admin 20
Hi Kerry07,
It is possible to pay voluntary National Insurance contributions from the 2006-2007 tax year.  
The letter that you have received should show all the shortfalls of voluntary contributions that you may pay.  
The letter should also accept your application to pay current and future voluntary contributions either by annual payment or by direct debit.
Before you do pay any voluntary contributions you should check with The Pension Service whether it is worthwhile for you to do so, their contact details should be on our letter.
Thank you.

Posted Wed, 03 Jan 2024 22:24:17 GMT by Peter Baker
First HMRC really must do something about the awful waits and having to listen to horrible looped music interspersed every 20 seconds with that laconic female voice telling us our call is imortant to HMRC and also telling us "just to let you know" that there is lots of info on the HMRC website. I was heartily sick of it after waiting over an hour before the call was answered. Then I found I was dealing with someone whose mind was elsewhere who did not bother to ask for a spelling of my new address even though it is in Scandinavia and she clearly had never heard of the road names and places I gave when she asked and would not have had the slightest clue how to spell them. DO you think you had better check the spelling. ? No I have typed in what you said, but I cannot locate the address. Shall I spell it all for you? Hold on one moment. And she rang off! I called twice more includng the final attempt at just before closing time 6pm. Wonders abound, I was just about to give up and the call was answered and more or less completely so even though it was over half an hour later when we finished. If we start a call before 6pm, we stay until we finish, the wonderful lady said. Anyway, down to the nitty gritty: Another wonderful lady (eventually you get lucky!) in the International Pensions office also in Newcastle or thereabouts had finally managed to tell me in a call what State Pension my 36 full years NIC would get me. £156.86. That's apprently because I was contracted out almost from the year dot in my career! Goodness knows how HMG got away with that scam. Most people who ever had a separate SERPs policy from 1987 onward for example, have long since cashed it in, not having a clue what it was for or that it would affect their eligibility to a full basic state pension. I have a financial service background but I can't explain how they worked out the reductions. For a number of years after HMRC first introduced the concept of the New State Pension, they were giving us false forecasts. Despite trying over many years, my first accurate forecast was obtained 4 months after I reach age 66 - my state pension age. And I had to work hard on the telephone to get it. When I was told, it was simple for the wonderful lady who imparted the news to check and to be 100% certain of wat she freely told me. Why was I never written to to be given that information? Why, before I ventured on this massive post pension age research project, was I only told I could buy back "deficient years" but not told how much I would have to pay, and what difference to New State Pension it would make? Why then did it take two separate calls to different parts of HMRC/DWP to learn these answers and to obtain the letters that confirmed what the wonderful ladies were instantly able to pass on over the phone but were unable to guarantee/confirm until the letters were sent? I work abroad thesedays, so the oft-mentioned CF83 is key, alongwith proof of employment so I can pay the much reduced Class 2 "deficient years" NICs. I gave dates over the phone and received to the nearest penny indications of what I would need to pay. Can I pay now? No we have to receive your CF83 and employment proofs first. Can I email them through the Government Gateway? Er No -- snail mail only at the moment, but electronic transmission of the same form is hoped for later this year. When you pay (but you cannot until we tell you) you will pay into 20-20-48 30944793 and the payment reference will be your NINo suffixed by your surname and then initials. The name of the account is HMRC NIC RECEIPTS. Can you really believe the duplication of effort by us wannabe state pensioners and the HMRC/DWP employees, purely because they are 15 or 20 years behind some other countries in Europe when it comes to reliable centralised digitised records and 100% reliable digital communication both ways? I guess it is one reason I am here paying foreign income tax willingly at much higher levels than Tory or Labour politicians will ever understand ... because here we know what we get for our taxes and are proud to contribute! Plus we don't have to spend hours in a lottery queue just to find out what we should already have been told years ago as soon to be pensioners. I had already decided that because of the COPE reduction to New State Pension, I would probably defer it for a year or two to bump it up a bit with the 5 % odd annual enhancement for deferral. However, I have decided I will defer it just the one year to my 67th birthday because the wonderful lady in the International Pensions office reminded me that even though I choose to defer, and even though there will be a subsequent deferral increase to the pension after it starts as I had planned, they automatically still backdate the claim for up to a year (max) and pay that deferred year out as a lump sum! Anyone else heard of that? And of course those of us abroad claiming our UK new state pension are largely aware that the years we actually can show we worked abroad qualify us for reduced NICs (Class2 instead of 3) which reduces the cost of each year bought back by typically 80%! The mystery to me is that even though I could buy back more years (from before 2016) it is only 2016/17 and more recent "deficient year" buy backs, that affect (increase) the new state pension (by roughly £5 per week or so). So in my case I cannot top up to £203. Closest I can get is £200! Goodness knows how they dreamed up these new rules, or how we let them! Anyway, it seems that until they make CF83 electronically submissible, that's the key document that must be sent by snail mail. Without it we get no confirmation of exactly what to pay to enhance our pensions, even though this thread now states about three times what HMRC account to pay into! Crazy eh? I would caution against just paying what you think "on account" so to speak - my guess is that a proper administrative HMRC mess will ensue if you do! Would be glad to hear otherwise of course. There's nothing more satisfying than forcing the system to our own will!
Posted Wed, 10 Jan 2024 09:29:49 GMT by HMRC Admin 20
Hi Keith,
I can confirm that the CF83 application form is the correct one to complete to apply to pay voluntary National Insurance contributions whilst overseas.  
If you could complete and return the CF83 with as much information as you can (and include a covering letter if you wish to explain further) then our International Team will be able to provide you with any shortfalls of voluntary contributions that you may pay and how to do so.  
The Pension Service will be able to advise you what tax years would be beneficial for you to pay to improve your UK State Pension so you should check with them before making a payment of voluntary contributions.  
Their contact details are available via:  Check your State Pension forecast
Thank you.
Posted Wed, 10 Jan 2024 12:38:13 GMT by Keith
Thanks for your reply. Should I contact the Pension Service now or should I wait until I hear back from your International Team about the shortfalls of voluntary contributions I'm able to make? I understand that I might not hear back from the International Team for close to a year (is that correct?). It feels like it could be a multi-year process to get to the point of being able to pay any shortfalls. If I'm able, I'd likely want to pay back to 2006, which as I understand it will remain possible up until April 2025...but what if the processes mentioned above takes longer than that? Cheers.
Posted Thu, 11 Jan 2024 02:22:39 GMT by Moray Vincent
Hi Peter, In regards to your post of 4 January, I did pay the monies before I filled in the CF83. Via the Government Gateway portal one can see how much money is owed to pay back years and so I just paid it as at the time they had not extended the deadline for payment (This was March 2023). I subsequently learned you needed to fill in a CF83 and I did get a case officer who obliquely acknowledged the monies had been received ("we have received monies from you, please specify how much was sent and the date it was sent"). HMRC has indicated there is a large backlog in processing and my CF83, other documentation and monies have not been processed (last time I checked via the Government Gateway), so yes I support your advice not to pay monies before you fill in the CF83 Hi HMRC, Can you advise the current backlog in processing for those outside the EU and when it is likely my case officer will write to me - and accept my back payments and update my records via Government Gateway - this is obviously assuming the payments made are correct and I have filled in the forms correctly
Posted Mon, 15 Jan 2024 16:12:07 GMT by
Hi Peter Love the rant! Thank you. I was told today that I might have to wait a year to get a response to my CF83. That's astounding. What on earth is going on at HMRC? In the meantime I have used information on this site to calculate how much they are likely to want per year and how many years I am likely to be able to pay. I shall make sure I have this sum in my British bank account against miraculous day when I actually hear from HMRC! Becca xxx
Posted Mon, 15 Jan 2024 23:20:19 GMT by Moray Vincent
Hi Keith, In reply to your post of [11] January. The clear logic in HMRC extending the deadline multiple times and now out to April 2025 is that this is the estimated time they will need to clear the backlog. I'm sure they can't be certain as people are claiming on an ongoing basis like yourself which adds to the backlog that they are reducing by processing claims already made. I'd be concerned the "International Team" will "forget" to contact you just because they must have such a backlog of work and as you say they will be dealing with an issue from over 12 months ago and may not be that motivated to add to the backlog of work they already have. I would probably keep going until you get some piece of paper from HMRC saying that they will accept your claims back to 2006 and not cut you off regardless of when they get back to you. I would not advise doing what I did and just paying because then you may have the stress of wondering where you money went, is/was it processed correctly, did HMRC even receive it. On the other hand, I do have a piece of paper from HMRC saying they have received the monies and that I have met the deadline for payment so even if the monies I paid are incorrect, then HMRC is not (or unlikely to) reject my payment at this point. I also think if we get a reply from HMRC saying what the current backlog is we can judge whether it is going up or down based on what HMRC said about the backlog in prior posts in this forum - HMRC thoughts/comments? I'm not expecting you (HMRC) to make any commitments, but letting us know the current backlog would be helpful so we can draw our own conclusions
Posted Tue, 16 Jan 2024 08:39:16 GMT by HMRC Admin 8
Hi Keith,
You could send in your CF83 application form into HMRC and around the same time contact The Pension Service to check what tax years are best to pay for.  
When you receive a reply from your CF83 then you will be in a position to make an informed decision of the tax years that you want to pay for. 
Our International Team are currently dealing with queries received on 9 February 2023 so there could be a delay of about 47 weeks from the date that we receive your CF83.  
We can advise that you will not be penalised because of HMRCs delay and you will be given an extended time limit to pay if the reply is issued to you close to the payment due date.

Posted Tue, 16 Jan 2024 08:54:56 GMT by HMRC Admin 8
Hi Moray,
Our International Team are currently dealing with queries received on 10 February 2023 so it may take about 47 weeks for them to reply to you from the date that we received your CF83 application form.  
If you’d like to speak with the National Insurance Helpline on 0300 200 3500 they will be able to give you a better estimate when you might expect a reply.

Posted Sat, 20 Jan 2024 19:32:43 GMT by Keith
Hello HRMC and fellow posters currently on this epic journey to pension nirvana! I printed the CF38 form around Christmas (roughly 4 weeks ago) and set about completing it while gathering supplementary information for an additional letter. I just passed on a link to the CF38 to a fellow expat today, only to notice that the form is different to the one I’d printed just last month. Can you confirm that the current copy at is the one to use? What changes occurred that necessitated the change in this form? Cheers, Keith
Posted Wed, 24 Jan 2024 15:05:11 GMT by HMRC Admin 20
Hi Keith,
I can confirm that we will accept any version of the CF83 application form, so if you could send in the one that you’ve completed we will be able to process it.  
We are always trying to make our application forms easier to read and complete which is why there is a new one online.
Thank you.

Posted Fri, 02 Feb 2024 18:27:30 GMT by Robert Gray
Hello HMRC, Please can you confirm that those of us who live abroad and who have access to a UK bank account can still make our Class 2 NI contributions to the following HMRC account: Sort code 20 20 48. Account 30944793 This account was previously listed on the HMRC website in the section "Pay Class 2 National Insurance if you do not pay through self assessment" but has now been removed. The above account is still listed in document INS13 Paying National Insurance Contributions from abroad.

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