How National Insurance credits can help boost your State Pension

The State Pension entitlement is based on the number of years you’ve paid National Insurance or have received National Insurance credits.

What are National Insurance credits?

National Insurance credits are a way of maintaining your National Insurance record when you’re not making National Insurance contributions. They help you to build up ‘qualifying years’, which count towards your overall entitlement.

You are entitled to National Insurance credits if you:

  • are, or have been, claiming benefits due to ill health or unemployment
  • are, or have been, on maternity, paternity or adoption pay
  • are, or have been, looking after a child under 12
  • are, or have been, on an approved training course
  • are married to or are a civil partner of a member of the armed forces and you went with your partner on an overseas posting
  • are, or have been, on jury service
  • have served a prison sentence for a conviction which was later quashed.

Claims for some credits can be backdated for many years, so it’s always worth checking to see if you qualify.

LCP have also created a guide to help people understand what they can get. It outlines credits that are available and how people end up missing out.

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