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Posted Wed, 01 Mar 2023 11:49:37 GMT by webbdef23
Hello Is the 18 digit code to make a voluntary contribution payment always the same? It is impossible to get through to check with someone. I wish to fill the gap for the year 2016 before the deadline in April. I have an 18 digit code from an old payment to fill a gap in another year but I am unsure if I can use the same number. Also, I have sent the form necessary to pay the voluntary contributions from abroad on 12/01/2023 but I have no mean of checking if this has been received and acknowledged. I can see I can pay the missing contributions for the year 2016 online in the section making a payment from abroad but I can't proceed without the 18 digit code. Many thanks
Posted Tue, 07 Mar 2023 08:43:06 GMT by HMRC Admin 19

We are sorry that you have been unable to speak to an advisor to obtain an 18 digit reference number. Our lines have been extremely busy. We can confirm, if you are an overseas customer, that is, living abroad and applying to pay voluntary National Insurance contributions for periods abroad, your reference number for payments would always be the same, see below. 

Use your National Insurance number followed by ‘IC’, your surname then your initial. If your bank limits you to a certain amount of characters, you should use your National Insurance number followed by ‘IC’ and as much of your surname as possible.
Example, if your name is Anne Jones, you would write the reference as QQ123456AICJONESA
Further information can be found on here: 

Pay voluntary Class 3 National Insurance

Your reference number would be different if you were living in the UK for the period you have requested to pay voluntary contributions for. You would then need to obtain an 18 digit reference number from HMRC, or if you are unable to speak to HMRC to obtain this number, you can pay by cheque. You can see information on ways to pay including cheque payments here:

Pay voluntary Class 3 National Insurance: overview

With regards to your application to pay voluntary National Insurance contributions whilst abroad (CF83), the current timescale for those applications is 28 weeks. However, if your application was received by HMRC by 5 April 2023 it will be accepted as being received before the deadline to pay for earlier tax years, that is 2006-2007 to 2016-2017. Unfortunately, the only way you can find out if HMRC have received your application, would be to speak to an advisor on our helpline. The number for you to ring from abroad is - +44 19 1203 7010.

Please note that you must contact DWP before making any payments of voluntary National Insurance contributions to HMRC. For periods when you were abroad, you must wait until you have received a reply to your CF83 application form confirming that you are eligible to pay. The reason we require you to contact DWP is because they will be able to advise you what years it is best for you to pay, and if you will benefit from paying them.  Although these contributions are voluntary, they cannot be refunded if paid incorrectly, therefore you should ensure that you will benefit from making the payment.
The contact number for the DWP International Pension Centre is +44 (0) 191 218 7777.

Thank you.
Posted Tue, 07 Mar 2023 16:15:51 GMT by webbdef23
Many thanks HMRC Admin 19 for your comment. I'm slightly confused though: prior to your reply, I had actually got through to an adviser over the phone. She was very kind and helpful and also checked and confirmed that my CF83 form had been received. She gave me the code you mentioned (formed by the NI etc) and I was about to pay for the year 2016-17 when I read your comment. If I've understood correctly, I cannot use the 18 digit code I have been given as in 2016-17 I was still resident in the U.K. (although I was unemployed). So do I need to phone and get a different code? Many thanks
Posted Fri, 10 Mar 2023 10:56:41 GMT by HMRC Admin 20
Hi webbdef23,

Sorry for the confusion surrounding your reference number.
I can confirm that the reference number that you have been given (National Insurance number followed by ‘IC’, your surname then your initial) will still work for the 2016-2017 year, even though you were resident in the UK during that year. You can continue to use that to make your payment.

Thank you
Posted Mon, 03 Apr 2023 17:14:30 GMT by Chantlerdesign
Hello, I do have a problem getting the 18 digit code. Every time I call the HMRC to get the code I went through the same security questions and information only to be told 'good by' and the system hangs up. I'm at the end of my tether, can someone help please Thank you

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