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Anyone looking to check and potentially buy National Insurance contributions currently has to call up HMRC – but has confirmed a new online tool is coming

Not everyone will be entitled to the full state pension(Getty Images)

Brits will find it easier to boost their state pension thanks to a new online tool due to launch within the next six months.

Anyone looking to check and potentially buy National Insurance contributions currently has to call up HMRC. But Martin Lewis’ has confirmed a new online tool will simplify this process.

MSE says the online service will launch before April 5 next year and will help you find the cheapest or most beneficial years to pay voluntary contributions for. You’ll also be able to pay for these online.

You can still call up HMRC to check if you have shortfalls, and pay for any missing National Insurance years, if you prefer. Most people need 35 qualifying years on their National Insurance record to claim the full new state pension, and ten years to receive anything at all. This means if you have gaps in your record, you may not receive a full new state pension later in life.

Under the current rules, you can buy back missing National Insurance years dating back to 2006 – but after April 5, 2025, you will only be able to go back six tax years. A top-up for a missed qualifying year currently costs £824 and boosts your annual state pension entitlement by £275 a year.

But not everyone needs to buy National Insurance contributions. Some people will be able to top up their National Insurance record for free through National Insurance credits

For example, you may be entitled to National Insurance credits if you were claiming statutory sick pay and not earning enough for a qualifying year, or if you’re eligible for, but not already claiming, benefits such as Jobseeker’s Allowance and Employment and Support Allowance.

There are more examples of ways you may be eligible for National Insurance credits on the website. You also need to check if the gains from buying extra years may be reduced if it pushes you into the higher 40% tax bracket.

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