Children who are being looked after by local authorities won't get a National Insurance number automatically as Child Benefit may not have been claimed for them. If you're a social worker for a 'looked after child', you should apply on their behalf.
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You should apply for a National Insurance number as soon as the child reaches the age of 15 years and 9 months. This saves time and complications later on. If you delay applying until the child starts work or higher education for example, you may find you can't get a number allocated straight away or you need to complete additional paperwork.
To apply for a National Insurance number for a looked after child, you'll need to:
Register your request with HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC)
Complete and return to HMRC form CA3530 'Application for a National Insurance number for a child looked after by a local authority'
Write to HMRC using local authority headed notepaper - for validation and security reasons - and for all applications include the following information:
If the child is a UK National, also include:
If the child is an unaccompanied minor (Home Office case), also include photocopies of the child’s Home Office documents.
Send your letter and documents to:
HM Revenue & Customs
Looked after Children Team
Benton Park View
Newcastle upon Tyne
You may also fax your letter and documents to the Looked after Children Team on fax number 0191 225 7384.
Letters sent by fax and post are dealt with in the same timescale.
HMRC will accept only one letter per applicant.
After HMRC has received your initial application, they'll send you form CA3530 to complete. For security reasons, you must complete and return this form to confirm the child's name and address before HMRC can issue the National Insurance number.
You must return form CA3530 to HMRC within one of month of receiving it. If you don't, you'll have to apply for the form again.
Once you have returned form CA3530, HMRC will send the National Insurance number to the child at the residential address you have provided on the form.
You can contact the Looked after Children Team using the telephone number provided on correspondence from them. You'll need to have to hand the unique reference number for the child's case which is shown on all relevant correspondence.