HMRC offers an online service to check a National Insurance record. In order to use the service you will need to have a Government Gateway account. If you don't have an account, you can apply to set one up online.
By signing in to the 'Check your National Insurance record' service you will also activate your personal tax account if you haven’t already done so. The personal tax account can be used to complete a variety of tasks, from updating an address, managing your child benefit and completing your self assessment return.
Your National Insurance record online will let you see:
- What you have paid, up to the start of the current tax year (6 April 2018)
- Any National Insurance credits you’ve received
- If gaps in contributions or credits mean some years don’t count towards your State Pension (they aren't 'qualifying years')
- If you can pay voluntary contributions to fill any gaps and how much this will cost.
In many circumstances it can be beneficial to make voluntary Class 2 contributions to increase your entitlement to benefits, including the State or New State Pension. Class 2 NICs were due to be abolished from April 2019 but the government announced last September that the planned abolition of Class 2 NICs has been cancelled.