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FILL IN THE TAX GAPS: New HMRC digital gateway opens for taxpayers looking to enhance their future state pension

Image credit: DALL.E (AI generated)

A new initiative, spearheaded by HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) and the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP), has been launched and designed to simplify the process for individuals wishing to increase their pension benefits through proactive management of their National Insurance (NI) contributions.

The Government rolled out a new cutting-edge online platform on 29 April 2024 dubbed "Check your State Pension forecast". Its primary function is to allow individuals below the State Pension age to examine their NI record for any discrepancies or gaps that might affect their future pension benefits. More importantly, it details the additional voluntary NI contributions required to bridge these gaps, thereby providing a clear pathway to maximise potential pension income.

Upon accessing the service, users can promptly identify any incomplete tax years that could be covered through further contributions. The platform not only suggests which years might be beneficial to supplement but also facilitates the payment process directly. After completing the transaction, users receive instant confirmation of both the payment and the update to their NI record.

The service is readily accessible via the official GOV.UK website or through the HMRC mobile application, making it highly accessible to all those eligible.

Eligible individuals have until 5 April 2025 to make voluntary contributions for any gaps in their NI record between 6 April 2006 and 5 April 2018. After this date, the opportunity to make retrospective contributions will be limited to only the previous six tax years, which aligns with the standard policy.

This initiative is a part of the Government’s broader strategy to integrate more digital solutions into everyday governance. The introduction of such digital tools is not only expected to improve individual financial security but also to relieve some of the administrative burdens on pension systems.

Nigel Huddleston, Financial Secretary to the Treasury, said: “Having peace of mind when planning for retirement is crucial to ensure people can enjoy later life. That’s why HMRC has launched this new online service today, making a real difference for thousands of pensioners in their retirement while providing certainty to those in their middle years and those still planning ahead.”

Minister for Pensions, Paul Maynard, said: “The State Pension is the foundation of income in retirement, which is why we have introduced this new online tool to help simplify boosting it for those who are able to.

“I would encourage everyone to check their State Pension forecast and to take a look at how they could improve their State Pension award with only a few simple clicks.”


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