Comments from HMRC regarding non-agreement countries and NIC
HMRC is yet to publish any guidance in relation to individuals who have returned to the UK, due to Covid-19, and are working in the UK before returning to their regular country of work. However it has been agreed to allow an easement which was previously published in the NI132 leaflet (as linked below). This allows these individuals to work in the UK for up to 6 weeks without incurring any liability to UK National Insurance Contributions. Further information and guidance on the position will be provided at the end of the 6 week period, including details on any exemptions and liabilities as a result of these individuals working in the UK.
If an employee returns to the UK on temporary duty, the position will depend on the nature of the duties. If they are:
- Incidental to overseas employment (e.g. briefing or further training for that employment) treat the employee as still abroad. Continue to deduct Class 1 contributions until the 52 week period of Class 1 liability is met.
- Not incidental to overseas employment and the 52 week period of liability has ended:
- Disregard the first 6 weeks of employment in the UK. This is not a legal requirement. It is a concession to ease administration when an employee briefly returns to the UK. However this only applies to situations where employees are returning to the UK for the same employer
- Pay contributions in the normal way for any further period in the UK.
(Where the 52 week period has not ended, it is not extended by any period of employment in the UK which falls within it).
If the employee goes to work abroad again after the 52 week liability period has ended, a further period of liability will arise only in the circumstances described in ‘Successive periods of employment abroad’.
If you have any questions in relation to the above, please do contact us.