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National Insurance (NI) is a contribution paid to HMRC by employees, their employers, and the self-employed. The purpose of National Insurance is to qualify people for certain provided benefits such as the State Pension.
Different taxpayers pay different kinds of National Insurance, called “classes”:
|NI class||Who pays||How is it paid||How much is it|
|Class 1||Employees earning more than £183 per week who are under State Pension age a year||Your employer deducts it through PAYE||12% (or 2% if you earn over £262 a week)|
|Class 1A or 1B||Employers for employees earning over £183 per week||Your employer pays it on top of your Class 1||13.8%|
|Class 2||Self-employed people earning over £6,475 a year||Through a Self Assessment tax return||Flat £159 per year|
|Class 3||Voluntary contributions – you can pay them to fill gaps in your NI record||Through a Direct Debit||£15.30 per week|
|Class 4||Self-employed people earning over £9,501 a year||Through a Self Assessment tax return||9% (or 2% if you earn over £50,000)|