ARCHIVED ARTICLE This article was correct at the time of publication. It is now over 6 months old so the content may be out of date.

piggybank icon

Moneyfactscompare -

Sponsored Content
Published: 27/08/2022
Person contemplating tax changes

Article written by Kellands Hale, our preferred independent advice firm.

This article is not intended to be financial advice to any individual. The views expressed are those of the author and does not endorse the content.

While it might not provide enough on its own for you to maintain the lifestyle you want, the State Pension will provide a solid bedrock of retirement income, rising annually to keep pace with the cost of living.

However, you might be surprised to learn that regulation changes implemented in 2016 could mean you aren’t eligible for the full new State Pension, even if you believe you have worked enough qualifying years.

The 35 “qualifying years” requirement

As of the 2022/23 tax year, the full new State Pension you could receive stands at £185.15 a week – totalling £9,627.80 a year. Of course, whether you are eligible for the full new State Pension depends on how many “qualifying years” you have worked, among other factors.

Once you have determined that you qualify for a state pension, the amount you may receive depends on the number of “qualifying years” you have worked. If you have completed 35 years or more and you were earning more than £183 a week from employment, self-employment or receiving some benefits you will become eligible for the full new State Pension.

If you are unsure of your eligibility when it comes to the new State Pension, you can check your National Insurance record on the Government website.

Why you should consider paying voluntary National Insurance

Over the course of your life, there may have been times when you weren’t paying National Insurance Contributions (NICs), either voluntarily or through your employer. So, there might be gaps in your NI record that could impede your eligibility for the full State Pension.

These gaps might be due to:

  • Giving up work for a number of years in order to have or raise children if NIC credits are not received
  • Years in which you were setting up a new business, so not technically earning a profit
  • Working abroad for a number of years.

If you are not eligible for the full new State Pension, and you would like to be, you can pay voluntary NICs to make up the difference.

If you’re approaching retirement in the coming few years, it could be constructive to check your NI record now, and make any voluntary contributions you can.

Generally, you can pay for the previous six years’ worth of NICs, and the deadline is the start of the new tax year. If you need help planning your voluntary NICs, your Kellands financial planner can advise you on this process.

Although the full State Pension might not be enough to fund your entire lifestyle when you retire, investing in your future by paying voluntary NICs now could be a smart move.

Indeed, having a guaranteed monthly income when you stop working could help you shoulder basic household costs, especially if you are retiring soon, while inflation may still be high.

New regulations mean you may need to pay voluntary NICs before 5 April 2023

When the new State Pension was implemented in 2016, it gave individuals the opportunity to back-fill any gaps in their NICs between April 2006 and April 2016.

This new State Pension allows those who might have been previously ineligible for the full payments to ensure a guaranteed income for their future.

The opportunity to back-fill NICs between 2006 and 2016 applies only if:

  • As a man, you were born after 5 April 1951
  • As a woman, you were born after 5 April 1953.

However, crucially, you only have until April 2023 to make these voluntary NICs. After 5 April 2023 you’ll only be able to pay for voluntary contributions for the past six years.

So, if you have not yet checked your State Pension forecast, now is the time to review your circumstances and back-fill your NICs if necessary. If you are too late, you may not be able to claim the full State Pension down the line, which could affect your retirement lifestyle in the years to come.

Get in touch

Missing out on the full new State Pension simply due to being unaware of regulation changes could affect your wealth down the line.

With the help of your Kellands financial planner, you may be able to make up the difference in NICs before the deadline in April 2023.

To review your State Pension circumstances, email us at, call 0161 929 8838, or click here. 

Please note

This article is for information only. Please do not act based on anything you might read in this article. All contents are based on our understanding of HMRC legislation, which is subject to change.

Kellands (Hale) Limited is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority. FCA Firm Reference No. 193498


Information is correct as of the date of publication (shown at the top of this article). Any products featured may be withdrawn by their provider or changed at any time. Links to third parties on this page are paid for by the third party. You can find out more about the individual products by visiting their site. will receive a small payment if you use their services after you click through to their site. All information is subject to change without notice. Please check all terms before making any decisions. This information is intended solely to provide guidance and is not financial advice. Moneyfacts will not be liable for any loss arising from your use or reliance on this information. If you are in any doubt, Moneyfacts recommends you obtain independent financial advice.

Person contemplating tax changes will never contact you by phone to sell you any financial product. Any calls like this are not from Moneyfacts. Emails sent by will always be from Be ScamSmart. will never contact you by phone to sell you any financial product. Any calls like this are not from Moneyfacts. Emails sent by will always be from Be ScamSmart.