NI Number

If you’re entitled to a National Insurance number but don’t have one, you can apply. You’ll need one in certain circumstances, such as claiming state benefits, applying for a student loan or when working. You can start work without one but you’ll need to apply straightaway. If you live in the UK you’ll normally receive one automatically at age 16.

Applying for a National Insurance number (you have all details on this link)

The most people who arrived here need:

When starting work or setting up as self-employed

If you start work or set up as self-employed you must apply for a National Insurance number if you do not have one. You do not need to have a plastic National Insurance number card. If you have the right to work in the UK, you will need to telephone Jobcentre Plus on telephone: 0845 600 0643 to arrange to get one. Lines are open Monday to Friday 8am to 6pm and are normally less busy before 9am.


What happens when you apply for a National Insurance number

Jobcentre Plus will arrange an ‘Evidence of Identity’ interview for you or send you a postal application. If relevant, they will confirm the date, time and location of your interview and what information/documentation you need to support your application.

What to expect at the ‘Evidence of identity’ interview

The interview will usually be one-to-one (unless, for example, you need an interpreter). You will be asked questions about why you need a National Insurance number, your background and circumstances.

You will also have to prove your identity. Bring as many ‘identity documents’ (originals, not photocopies) as you can to your interview. Examples of documents which count are:

  • valid passport (UK or foreign)
  • national identity card (UK or foreign)
  • residence permit or residence card including biometric immigration residency documents
  • full birth or adoption certificate
  • full marriage or civil partnership certificate
  • driving licence (UK or foreign)During the interview a National Insurance number application form will be completed and you will be asked to sign it
  • If you don’t have any of these – or other – identity documents you still must go to the interview. The information you are able to provide might be enough to prove your identity.