HL Deb 19 July 1979 vol 401 cc1614-5WA

asked Her Majesty's Government:

Whether they will set out the rules governing National Insurance contributions due from part-time teachers during their upaid holidays, if they wish to preserve their pension rights; and whether the Government will take steps to bring this information to the attention of these teachers, among whom considerable confusion exists at present.


Like other employed earners, part-time teachers who in a tax year have paid or been credited with insufficient contributions for the year to count as a qualifying year for basic retirement pension purposes, may pay voluntary Class 3 contributions. A qualifying year is one in which the contributor has paid or been credited with contributions on earnings amounting to 52 times (50 times prior to April 1978) the lower weekly earnings limit for that year (at present, £19.50). A contributor whose record is deficient for a particular tax year is sent a statement of account about a year later. Anyone whose record is likely to be deficient should therefore ensure that the Department of Health and Social Security holds his up-to-date address. The statement of account shows how the record stands for the year in question and the amount of Class 3 contributions which needs to be paid if the year is to be a qualifying year.

Many part-time teachers pay sufficient contributions during their periods of work to have no need to pay voluntary contributions. We are not aware of any special difficulty concerning teachers, but those who wish to have further information about voluntary contributions can obtain leaflet NI42—and advice, if necessary—from their local Social Security office.