To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, pursuant to the Answer of 16 September 2020 to Question 86679, on National Insurance, what progress her Department has made on implementing a digital solution to speed up the National Insurance Number (NINo) process; and when that digital service will be available.
26 February 2021
The department has continued to progress the development of its digital solution, ‘Apply for a National Insurance Number (NINo)’ and will soon be available to applicants who require a NINo for employment purposes.
The department started testing a partial digital solution, on a small scale, in mid-October, to support the allocation of National Insurance Numbers. This solution enables the collection of an applicant’s data, but not the online verification of their identity. Alternative identity verification solutions to reduce the need for a face to face identity check for some customer groups, including EU nationals with Settled or Pre-Settled status, was part of that test.
In January, we gained Government Digital Service approval as a result we were no longer required to limit the number of applicants we can serve, although we do not have an identity solution for all potential applicants yet. Our current plan is that by the end of March 2021 we will be able to offer a service to all applicants who do not require their identity to be verified face to face.
This means that we have moved from a position in March 2020 of only offering a NINo service to the most vulnerable, to a place where we are able to provide a service to the majority.