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Making UK National Insurance contributions after emigrating to Canada

Making UK National Insurance contributions after emigrating to Canada

Old Nov 15th 2019, 4:23 am
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Default Making UK National Insurance contributions after emigrating to Canada

Hi all,

Do members have any tips or guidance for making voluntary NI contributions back to the UK after emigrating to Canada. I want to fulfil the full 30 year contribution requirement to receive the full pension amount and am in a position to pay for a few years contributions since emigrating to Canada. I suspect I'll need to make a phone call back to a Government department but just wondered what others experiences are on how quick and easy it is to undertake.

Many thanks
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Old Nov 15th 2019, 6:27 am
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Default Re: Making UK National Insurance contributions after emigrating to Canada

I must admit . I am puzzled by all this.

Why do people in Canada do this please if they are not returning to the UK to take up a state pension ?

Is there no state pension in Canada? Or does one need a certain level of UK contribution to gain a Canada state pension.

Curious.

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Old Nov 15th 2019, 8:01 am
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Default Re: Making UK National Insurance contributions after emigrating to Canada

Originally Posted by BEVS View Post
I must admit . I am puzzled by all this.

Why do people in Canada do this please if they are not returning to the UK to take up a state pension ?
Because they don't need to return to the UK to claim it, they can do so from Canada (same as you can from NZ).

Originally Posted by BEVS View Post
Is there no state pension in Canada? Or does one need a certain level of UK contribution to gain a Canada state pension.

Curious.
Most people prefer to claim both which is perfectly allowable (again, as in NZ I assume?). The payment for NI from overseas is so little, something like £11 a week iirc, so well worth it for a potential income of £130 a week ish.

OP, you can check your current entitlement here - https://www.gov.uk/check-state-pension

To top up and pay any missing years (up to a maximum of 6), you'll need to contact HMRC to arrange it - https://www.gov.uk/government/organi...n-uk-residents

HTH.

Last edited by christmasoompa; Nov 15th 2019 at 8:05 am.
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Old Nov 15th 2019, 9:11 am
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Default Re: Making UK National Insurance contributions after emigrating to Canada

Originally Posted by christmasoompa View Post
Because they don't need to return to the UK to claim it, they can do so from Canada (same as you can from NZ).



Most people prefer to claim both which is perfectly allowable (again, as in NZ I assume?). T

HTH.
You cannot claim both in NZ. You pick one or the other.
If you claim Nz then the UK one will be used and offset.
If you pick UK then that is what you will receive and will be frozen however you could choose to swap that for an NZ one .
You cannot have both.

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Old Nov 15th 2019, 10:10 am
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Default Re: Making UK National Insurance contributions after emigrating to Canada

Originally Posted by BEVS View Post
You cannot claim both in NZ. You pick one or the other.
If you claim Nz then the UK one will be used and offset.
If you pick UK then that is what you will receive and will be frozen however you could choose to swap that for an NZ one .
You cannot have both.
Ah, that's interesting. Never heard of that in any other country, wonder why the NZ government doesn't allow it? Seems odd if you've paid in to both systems to not be able to claim.
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Old Nov 15th 2019, 12:28 pm
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Default Re: Making UK National Insurance contributions after emigrating to Canada

Originally Posted by BEVS View Post
You cannot claim both in NZ. You pick one or the other.
If you claim Nz then the UK one will be used and offset.
If you pick UK then that is what you will receive and will be frozen however you could choose to swap that for an NZ one .
You cannot have both.
Canada effectively has three pensions schemes. Canada Pension Plan (CPP) which is like NI and State Pension (RP). One may get both types (CPP and UK RP) but income tax may go up. Generally speaking, if your UK pension is already more than half because most of your working life was in the UK, it follows that a minor part was in Canada, so the greater income is likely to be the UK one and then you could increase that (a good deal) by paying voluntary contributions.

To give an example, I was 3 years short of the 35 years (it changed a couple of times) and on the figures I was given that was the equivalent of £30 a week. Or £10 a week for each missing year.
For some reason unknown to me, as when I looked I didn't qualify for it, I was able to pay the lowest rate. Something like £150 for each year and that would increase the State Pension by £500 a year. A crazily good deal. If you're going to live past the retirement age for whatever age it is when you get there.
Note these figures may not be the same for everyone.

The second pension is Old Age Security (OAS) No contributions needed, just residency in Canada, subject to a minimum of 10 years (and time in some countries may count towards that). The theory seems to be that while you're in Canada, you are still "contributing" with the usual income taxes and the sales taxes too. I like to think it recognises other things too, society type things. Voluntary work. Raising kids. A bit like Child Benefit in the UK credited the parent with an NI contribution. Home Responsibilities Protection I believe it was once known as.

Other income does affect the level but other income has to be pretty high to cancel any payment. About $80,000.

Then there's Guaranteed Income Supplement (GIS) which is a bit like the UK's Pension Credit but not means tested like in the UK. Savings don't come into it but the interest on any does. It's purely about what income you have and it's all done via annual tax returns. Housing situation is irrelevant.
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Old Nov 15th 2019, 1:43 pm
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Default Re: Making UK National Insurance contributions after emigrating to Canada

Originally Posted by BEVS View Post
You cannot claim both in NZ. You pick one or the other.
If you claim Nz then the UK one will be used and offset.
If you pick UK then that is what you will receive and will be frozen however you could choose to swap that for an NZ one .
You cannot have both.
That's interesting BEVS. I always assumed that the NZ pension system was somewhat similar to that in Oz, ie with eligibility based on a person's income and assets. Scouse receives about three quarters of the value of a full UK basic State pension (frozen) due to his NI contributions prior to moving to Australia at 40, and about half of the value of an Australia aged pension due to meeting the residency requirements here. He had the opportunity to make Class 2 additional payments into his NI while he was working which would have increased his UK pension to the full amount, it was very cheap but never got around to it.

The Oz government takes the claimant's worldwide assets and income into account prior to granting/refusing the pension (which by the way took 7 months and about 200 documents from us before it was processed!). They assess eligibility on whichever calculates out at the highest amount, income or assets. But despite his part UK pension, owning our own house in Oz and two rental properties in the UK, plus the rental income we get from those, he still qualified for some Oz age pension.

How can the rules be so different between our two countries, we're neighbours for goodness sake!
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Old Nov 15th 2019, 4:24 pm
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Default Re: Making UK National Insurance contributions after emigrating to Canada

Originally Posted by BristolUK View Post
Canada effectively has three pensions schemes. Canada Pension Plan (CPP) which is like NI and State Pension (RP). One may get both types (CPP and UK RP) but income tax may go up. Generally speaking, if your UK pension is already more than half because most of your working life was in the UK, it follows that a minor part was in Canada, so the greater income is likely to be the UK one and then you could increase that (a good deal) by paying voluntary contributions.

To give an example, I was 3 years short of the 35 years (it changed a couple of times) and on the figures I was given that was the equivalent of £30 a week. Or £10 a week for each missing year.
For some reason unknown to me, as when I looked I didn't qualify for it, I was able to pay the lowest rate. Something like £150 for each year and that would increase the State Pension by £500 a year. A crazily good deal. If you're going to live past the retirement age for whatever age it is when you get there.
Note these figures may not be the same for everyone.

The second pension is Old Age Security (OAS) No contributions needed, just residency in Canada, subject to a minimum of 10 years (and time in some countries may count towards that). The theory seems to be that while you're in Canada, you are still "contributing" with the usual income taxes and the sales taxes too. I like to think it recognises other things too, society type things. Voluntary work. Raising kids. A bit like Child Benefit in the UK credited the parent with an NI contribution. Home Responsibilities Protection I believe it was once known as.

Other income does affect the level but other income has to be pretty high to cancel any payment. About $80,000.

Then there's Guaranteed Income Supplement (GIS) which is a bit like the UK's Pension Credit but not means tested like in the UK. Savings don't come into it but the interest on any does. It's purely about what income you have and it's all done via annual tax returns. Housing situation is irrelevant.
Just to add on the UK front, as BristolUK has pointed out that you can take both pensions in Canada (what is it with Kiwiland?) there is some kind of tipping point as regards paying top-ups into missing NI contributions. This appears to less of a 'good idea' the closer one gets to retirement age, but we all have different circumstances.

You can get an estimate of your UK state pension online very easily from gov.uk, you will need to provide your NI number and your date of birth (security??, love it ) to begin the process. It will tell you which years are lacking in contributions, how much the top-up will cost followed by a whole bunch of what-if scenarios; then just crunch the numbers.

Quick and easy to do, I did mine a couple of weeks back (I'm currently 21 months off UK state pension eligibility) and figured that in my case it wasn't worth doing the top-ups for the minimal gain. But everyone's circumstances are different...

Good luck!
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Old Nov 15th 2019, 8:46 pm
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Default Re: Making UK National Insurance contributions after emigrating to Canada

Good ness me. Here was me thinking that for Oz and Canada it was the same as NZ

Originally Posted by NZ work and income
If you are entitled to a State Pension or another UK state benefit, generally your New Zealand Superannuation or Veteran’s Pension payments will be reduced by the amount of that State Pension or state benefit.Sections 187-191 of the Social Security Act 2018 set out the requirement for this deduction and Article 15 of the Social Security Agreement between New Zealand and the United Kingdom (the Agreement) largely reflects this. This means that the treatment of UK pensions under the Agreement is generally consistent with the treatment of overseas pensions from other countries.This ensures that all New Zealanders – regardless of whether they’ve lived overseas and are entitled to an overseas pension – get an equitable amount of state retirement pension. It would take you 35 years to become entitled to the full amount of UK pension, whereas it takes only 10 years of living in New Zealand before you become entitled to the full rate of New Zealand Superannuation. If you received a partial UK pension as well as full New Zealand Superannuation or Veteran’s Pension you would receive more state retirement pension than lifelong New Zealand residents, who have contributed through their taxes to the funding of New Zealand Superannuation for a longer period of time.
I have to dob in my UK pension come the time.
However I am not sure we will stay here so I do need to think about the contributions to the UK state pension. I should have had 35 yrs but I think they moved the goalposts a bit on that regarding the qualifying years. Hhmmm.
MrBEVS would be OK as he has worked in NZ so that would count towards years for the UK pension but I haven't worked in NZ. Well - not full time toil anyway.

Apologies OP. I do not mean to highjack your thread. It just raised some interesting issues that impact on me.
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Old Nov 15th 2019, 9:55 pm
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Default Re: Making UK National Insurance contributions after emigrating to Canada

Originally Posted by BEVS View Post
I should have had 35 yrs but I think they moved the goalposts a bit on that regarding the qualifying years.
I left the UK in 2004 with 32 years in. At that time it was 40 years so I was expecting 32/40ths.

Not sure when but it was subsequently reduced to 30, so straight away I was looking at the maximum. Later it became 35 so 32/35ths for me.

But the new rate when they changed it to 35 years was quite a big bump, so that my 32/35ths of the higher rate was about the same as the rate when it only needed 30 and more than the 32/40ths had nothing changed.
Then, of course, they messed around with the age qualifying date and for me it's now 66, but I'll get a Canadian pension at 65. Yay.

It always makes me laugh when in the UK they talk about planning and making provision for retirement when, in about 12 years, they made four significant changes to the system.

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Old Nov 22nd 2019, 2:06 am
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Default Re: Making UK National Insurance contributions after emigrating to Canada

Originally Posted by London_Based View Post
Hi all,

Do members have any tips or guidance for making voluntary NI contributions back to the UK after emigrating to Canada. I want to fulfil the full 30 year contribution requirement to receive the full pension amount and am in a position to pay for a few years contributions since emigrating to Canada. I suspect I'll need to make a phone call back to a Government department but just wondered what others experiences are on how quick and easy it is to undertake.

Many thanks
You need 35 years for a full pension.

Apply to pay class 2 NICs which are £156 pa, instead of class 3 at £780 pa.

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/social-security-abroad-ni38
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Old Nov 22nd 2019, 2:53 pm
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Default Re: Making UK National Insurance contributions after emigrating to Canada

I had only 11 qualifying years on my UK NI record, but over the last 6 years i have paid as many as possible , including one lump sum of 10 (approx) years, so when i retire next year at 66, i will have about 28 qualifying years.
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