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Posted Wed, 06 May 2020 15:10:49 GMT by DB1
Hi, I have never filled in a tax return before and I have not been able to verify my identity on HMRC's online services, but when I clicked on the 'Complete and submit tax year 2019 to 2020 Self Assessment return' link, it appeared I may indeed be able to complete the return online. I filled in each section until '6. View Your Calculation', but there were no options/calculations regarding voluntary Class 2 NICs. The only reason I registered for self-assessment was to pay voluntary Class 2 NICs towards the state pension as I do not earn a taxable income. The information on the page suggests that 'If the Class 2 amount shows '£0.00' this may because you're not registered to pay Class 2 NICs', but I thought in registering for self-assessment that I was automatically registered to pay voluntary Class 2 NICs. There is no NI section at all on my calculation summary, only the 'Total amount due'. I would be grateful if you could answer two questions: 1. Can you please tell me how to include voluntary Class 2 NICs on my tax return. 2. Can you please tell me if I will indeed be able to submit this return online given that I haven't been verified - I obviously do not wish to hit the 'Submit your return' button until I have all this cleared up, but only then will I know if I can indeed submit electronically or if I will still have to send a paper return instead. Any assistance is greatly appreciated. Kind Regards, Dianne
Posted Thu, 07 May 2020 09:10:00 GMT by HMRC Admin 4
Hi

Class 2 NIC can be paid voluntarily through self assessment by completing the self employment section of the return.

If you have no income then this will not be calculated but if you tick the box to pay voluntarily and then the recalculate button,

this should generate the relevant class 2 amount on your calculation.

If you have been able to access your online account then you should be able to submit the return.

If however you are not self employed but just want to pay voluntary national insurance then this can be done as per guidance below.

A self assessment return is not required for this.

Voluntary National Insurance
Posted Thu, 07 May 2020 13:18:42 GMT by DB1
Hi, Thank you for your reply. Can you please tell me exactly where the box to pay voluntary Class 2 contributions is? I have been through all sections of the online return multiple times and can see nowhere to tick this option. The final calculation does not include any mention of Class 2 NICs at all. A help section on the page entitled 'Help about Class 2 NIC amount' only directs me to a video that is inaccessible or the HMRC online services page, which does not have any section dealing with NICs. In section 3, 'Tailor Your Return', it states 'If you are self employed or in a partnership, you must register to pay Class 2 National Insurance', but there is no specific advice about this and I thought it was automatic when I registered for self-assessment. The link 'More information if you have not already done this' actually leads to the self-assessment registration page. Is there another form I should fill in? Also, as far as I am aware, you must be registered for self-assessment to pay Class 2 contributions, which is the only reason I did so. Otherwise voluntary national insurance is at the Class 3 rate and unaffordable. It is included in your guidelines that people may register for self-assessment for this exact reason: "If you’ll earn £1,000 or less in this tax year: you do not need to be registered as self-employed if you earn £1,000 or less in a tax year as a sole trader. But you can choose to stay registered to make voluntary Class 2 National Insurance payments". This is the situation I am in and registered for self-assessment solely to make Class 2 contributions. I would be very grateful for any assistance in paying voluntary Class 2 NICs via self assessment. Thank you very much for your time. Kind Regards, Dianne
Posted Mon, 11 May 2020 08:57:00 GMT by HMRC Admin 3
Hi, 
This option can only be found on the self employment section so you would have to have said 'yes' to the question "were you self employed" under the tailor your return section.
Again though, you would not select this option if you were not self employed and would not be able to pay class 2.
Class 2 national insurance is only for self employed people.
The £1000 or less statement again refers to self employed income and you would only register for this if your were a sole trader with £1000 or less and still want to pay your share of national insurance.
Posted Mon, 11 May 2020 13:57:22 GMT by DB1
Hi, Thank you very much for your reply. I am aware that Class 2 national insurance is for self employed people, and as your video on Class 2 national insurance ("Class 2 National Insurance contributions and your Self Assessment tax return") states: "If you're self-employed with an annual gross income of £1,000 or less, you only need to register for Self Assessment if you want to pay Class 2 National Insurance." This is the exact situation I am in and therefore have done just as the information states and registered for self-assessment to pay Class 2 national insurance. The problem I am having is that the questions regarding self employment only appear if you select 'yes' to the question 'Was your turnover more than £1,000 in total from all self-employments?'. If you select 'no', as in my case, no questions regarding self-employment appear as well as no option to pay Class 2 national insurance. There is no box on the 'Tailor Your Return' page that specifically asks 'were you self employed'. The questions I can see on the page are as follows: - Were you an employee (or director or office holder) or agency worker in the year to 5 April 2020? - Was your turnover more than £1,000 in total from all self-employments? - Were you in a partnership? - Did you receive income from UK land and/or property (including income from foreign property) over £1,000? - If you received any foreign income, do you need to complete the foreign section? - If you disposed of any chargeable assets, or had any chargeable gains, or you wish to claim an allowable loss, or make any other claim or election, do you need to complete the Capital Gains section? There is no question 'were you self employed'. Any assistance in clearing up this confusion would be greatly appreciated. Kind Regards, Dianne
Posted Tue, 12 May 2020 06:32:00 GMT by HMRC Admin 3
Hi,
This is correct.
In order to pay the class 2 voluntarily then you will need to select 'yes' to that question in tailore your return and then also select 'yes' to your tunrover being over £1000 even though this is not the case.
Posted Tue, 12 May 2020 10:14:32 GMT by DB1
Hi, Thank you very much for your reply. I am a little disconcerted that I effectively have to lie on my tax return in order to pay Class 2 insurance. I absolutely did not have a turnover of over £1000, but I will have to say I did on a Government form? I have read about all the penalties that can be incurred for supplying incorrect information on a tax return and now I find I *must* give incorrect information. I am not very comfortable that I will be stating on a tax form that I earned money I did not. Can you please clarify that it is indeed the case that I must state that I earned over £1000 when I in fact did not, and that there will be no repercussions for this? Kind Regards, Dianne
Posted Wed, 13 May 2020 08:01:00 GMT by HMRC Admin 3
Hi, 
I can understand your concern, however, I can assure you that you are following the correct procedure by doing what has been advised. 
When you choose the help option at this question, it does confirm that you need to state 'yes' if you wish to pay Class 2 National Insurance Contributions.
Posted Wed, 13 May 2020 13:59:43 GMT by DB1
Hi, Thank you so much for your advice. I did as suggested and now have encountered another problem. When I tick 'Yes' to the question 'Do you want to pay Class 2 NICs voluntarily?' and attempt to submit the page, I receive the error message: 'There is a problem: As Class 2 NIC amount is not available or is zero, select 'No' to 'Do you want to pay Class 2 NICs voluntarily?' This means I cannot proceed and I still cannot pay Class 2 contributions! Please help! Kind Regards, Dianne
Posted Thu, 14 May 2020 13:07:00 GMT by HMRC Admin 4
Hi,

Once you enter yes to wanting to pay class 2 voluntarliy, you need to select the recalculate button.

This should then bring in the class 2 NICs.
Posted Fri, 15 May 2020 10:34:54 GMT by DB1
Hi, I entered 'Yes' and clicked 'Recalculate' and the same error appeared. This seems to be a known problem that others have encountered. I would appreciate any help in resolving this issue as I cannot now proceed with the tax return. Kind Regards, Dianne
Posted Mon, 18 May 2020 08:21:00 GMT by HMRC Admin 3
Hi,
Sorry to hear you are having such issues.
If you submit the return as is without the class 2 NIC and then allow 72 hours.
If you then give us a call, we can then access your record and override the system to change this for you.
Self Assessment: general enquiries
Posted Mon, 18 May 2020 09:11:55 GMT by DB1
Hi, This is very disappointing as it seems to be a known issue with the system that has never been corrected. I have never submitted a tax return before, and now my first self-assessment will be incorrect, necessitating follow-up phone-calls to try and fix an issue that could be avoided. Does this mean I will have to go through the same process every year? Is there no way this issue can be corrected on the online tax form *before* submitting it? Can you tell me exactly what phone number to call if I do indeed have to submit this incorrect tax return - I am very worried this will not be properly corrected. All I wished to do was pay this year's Class 2 NICs. Any assistance is greatly appreciated. Kind Regards, Dianne
Posted Mon, 18 May 2020 14:09:00 GMT by HMRC Admin 3
Hi, 
As this is a current known issue we cannot advise that this will recur in the future. 
This has not been an issue with previous years, so seems to have only occurred this year.
Posted Mon, 18 May 2020 15:08:12 GMT by DB1
Hi, Thank you very much for your reply. Apparently this is an issue that has been well documented since at least 2016 without resolution. Since you stated 'as this is a current known issue', does that mean the problem is actually being dealt with? Should I therefore wait until the system has been fixed to submit my tax return? I am very confused as the Class 2 NICs help section states: "If the Class 2 amount shows '£0.00' this may because you're not registered to pay Class 2 NICs - go to HMRC services to sign in or register" The amount on my return is indeed £0.00, but as far as I am aware, I already registered to pay Class 2 NICs when I registered for self-assessment - the summary of the registration application even states: "You have requested to register as self-employed/sole trader for Self Assessment and Class 2 NICs" Since that application was successful and I was assigned a UTR I assumed this would mean I was automatically registered to pay Class 2 NICs as stated. Is this not the case? Is there another form I should fill in specifically for Class 2 NICs? I wish to avoid sending the return without Class 2 NICs ticked and then calling back to amend it as the phonecall can take up to an hour at the best of times and in the current situation I am concerned I won't get through at all. Any assistance would be greatly appreciated and I do indeed thank you for continuing to help me out via this forum. Kind Regards, Dianne
Posted Tue, 19 May 2020 06:47:00 GMT by HMRC Admin 3
Hi, 
It is a known issue and we are looking into this but as I cannot give a timescale on when this may be resolved, it would be your choice as to whether you wanted to wait or submit as is and call as previously advised.
You have done the correct thing by using the form to set up as a sole trader. This will automatically register you for class 2, so the only reason it is not being populated is because your income is low.
If you do not want to call you can also try webchat or even send in a letter to us at HMRC, PAYE and Self Assessment, BX9 1AS.
Posted Tue, 19 May 2020 15:14:04 GMT by DB1
Hi, Thank you very much for your reply. It is very helpful to know I did indeed register correctly and that it is a problem with the system that's preventing the Class 2 NICs from being calculated. Can you tell me if this issue could possibly be solved with a phonecall *before* sending the tax return rather than after i.e. would someone at HMRC with access to my account be able to amend it for me as I'm completing it rather than trying to fix it afterwards? If not I may indeed wait for a few weeks to see if the issue is corrected. I'm hesitant to send the return now as I wish to avoid chasing an error and I imagine the volume of calls may be very high right now. Thank you all very much for your help - this forum has been invaluable and I really appreciate it. Kind Regards, Dianne
Posted Wed, 20 May 2020 07:04:00 GMT by HMRC Admin 3
Hi, 
Unfortunately, we need to have the submitted return before we can then go in and alter it.
We cannot access your account and amend while you are completing.
Posted Thu, 06 Aug 2020 12:50:52 GMT by DB1
Hi, I finally submitted my tax return via post as the online system would not include voluntary Class 2 contributions in my tax calculation due to an error as described above. Now I have received the tax calculation letter via post and it states that I have nothing to pay for 2019-20. I do not understand as I clearly indicated on the form that I wished to pay Class 2 voluntary contributions! (section 'Losses, Class 2 and Class 4 National Insurance contributions and CIS deductions - box 36: 'If your total profits for 2019-20 are less than £6,365 and you choose to pay Class 2 NICs voluntarily, put 'X' in the box') I am at my wit's end trying to qualify for and pay voluntary Class 2 NICs. What should I do now that both the online and postal systems have failed me? Any advice would be greatly appreciated. Kind Regards, Dianne
Posted Fri, 07 Aug 2020 10:06:35 GMT by HMRC Admin 8
 Hello,
I would suggest that you contact the helpline to look at your form.

The voluntary Class 2 box may have been missed when your return was processed: Self Assessment: general enquiries

Regards,

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