Tax and National Insurance

When you arrive in the UK to work, you should apply for a National Insurance Number as soon as possible. It often takes more than a month to get an appointment to apply for a number and possibly as long again for the number to be sent out to you.

To make an appointment to apply for a National Insurance Number call 0845 600 0643. Your interview will be held at a Jobcentre Plus(external link) office.

You can work without a National Insurance Number and will be assigned a temporary number, but if you are going to be in the UK for any length of time you should apply for a permanent number. In addition to ensuring you are taxed at the correct rate, it also means that your National Insurance contributions are lodged under your personal number, which will make it easier should you ever apply for a benefit or service which is dependant on contributions having been paid.

Information on National Insurance numbers is provided by the Department for Work and Pensions(external link) and UK Government Online(external link).


All of the UK expatriate newspapers and magazines have advertisements for firms offering tax services such as rebates and setting up a limited liability company, which can help you gross higher earnings. Check TNT Magazine money section(external link) for extensive tax information or see the website of 1st Contact(external link).

The New Zealand High Commission is not able to assist New Zealanders with UK tax enquiries. For any UK tax inquiries please contact the HM Revenue & Customs(external link) office closest to you.


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