What is a National Insurance number? Do I need one? And how do I get one? To find out the answers to these common questions read on…
A National Insurance Number is your own personal account number. It is unique to you and you keep the same one all your life. It makes sure that the National Insurance contributions and tax you pay are properly recorded against your name.
You need a National Insurance number (NI number) if you work in the UK. You are able to start work before you have your NI number, as you can be given a temporary number by your employer.
You should have been sent a NI number automatically just before your 16th birthday if :
- you live in the UK
- your parents or guardians are getting Child Benefit for you.
If you do not meet both conditions, for example if you are an International student, you will need to apply for a national insurance number.
How to apply
You will need to make an appointment to have an Evidence of Identity interview, where you will be asked to bring along documents such as your passport and driving license. Make an appointment through your local Jobcentre Plus (telephone 0845 600 0643). The local office for Queen Mary is at 60 Commercial Road Whitechapel.
Find out more from the HM Revenue and Customs website.
UKCISA has useful informaiton for International students, including working during your studies.