Do international students pay National Insurance contributions?

Updated on 13 November 2017

Students who work in the UK have to pay UK NIC if they are aged 16 or over. This applies to most full-time students in higher education. We explain how this may apply to you.

Do I have to pay National Insurance contributions (NIC) if I work in the UK while studying?

Students who work in the UK have to pay UK NIC if they are aged 16 or over. This applies to most full-time students in higher education. It also applies to postgraduate students who are paid for teaching while in the UK and placement students who receive earnings during work experience.

There is more information on NIC for the employed in the ‘employed section’ of this website.

Is it possible to get a refund of NIC or transfer NIC to another country?

Migrants who work in the UK are liable to, and pay, NIC. It is not usually possible to obtain a refund of any of the NIC paid.

The NIC might be taken into account, however, when determining eligibility to state benefits in another country. This is likely to be the case if you are returning to a country within the EEA or to a country that has a social security agreement with the UK.

There is more information in the section on NIC.

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