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Contribution guide for employers

Sending us your contribution information

You must tell us about contributions every month on your combined employer return.

The monthly return includes:​​

  • who you have employed 
  • ​how much you paid each employee
  • the date an employee joined or left your employment in the month, if applicable

Paying contributions

As an employer you must pay the primary and secondary contributions for all employees who:

  • earn an amount at or above the minimum earnings threshold for the pay period
  • have a registration card marked FR1 on the back (blue registration card)
  • are aged between the compulsory school leaving age and pension age (contributions are due from the end of the month in which a person reaches compulsory school leaving age and until the end of the month, in the month a person takes their pension)
  • are labour only sub-contractors
  • are not the spouse or civil partner of the company or business owner

Some employees may have elected not to pay primary contributions. They'll be in possession of a card marked XR1 (red card). Employers are still liable to pay secondary contributions of 6.5%.

The spouse or civil partner of the company or business owner must not be included on the schedule.

Minimum earnings threshold

If the employee reaches the threshold then you must pay the primary and secondary contributions. The threshold that you use is determined by the frequency that you pay your employee. 

Thresholds for 2023

​Payment period
Paid ​weekly
​Paid every 2 weeks
​Paid every 4 weeks
​Paid monthly

Minimum earnings threshold guidance

Employers are required to pay primary and secondary Social Security contributions for any employees with wages at, or above, the minimum earnings threshold for the wage period.

Minimum earnings threshold

The threshold depends on the normal wage period for the employee. For example:

  • monthly
  • weekly
  • fortnightly
  • four-weekly
​Monthly threshold example
Minimum earnings threshold for a monthly paid employee
​Would pay primary and secondary contributions when the monthly wages are £499 per month or higher.
​Would not pay primary and secondary contributions when the monthly wages are £498.99 per month or lower.
​The contributions are calculated on the whole wage for the month, not just the amount of wages over the minimum earnings threshold.

​Weekly threshold example
Minimum earnings threshold for a weekly paid employee
Would pay primary and secondary contributions when the wages are £115 per week or higher.
Would not pay primary and secondary contributions when the wages are £114.99 per week or lower.
Employers with weekly paid employees should round the wage down to the nearest 25 pence when calculating contributions. So, for a wage of £100.99, the amount would be rounded down to £100.75. The contributions will apply to the whole wage for the week, rather than just the amount of wages over the weekly threshold.

Two and four weekly threshold

For employees paid every 2 weeks, the threshold will be twice the weekly threshold.

For employees paid every 4 weeks it will be 4 times the weekly threshold.

Changes to the minimum earnings threshold

The thresholds will be calculated by Government and published for the following January. 

New combined employer return information

Online returns

The best way to complete your combined employer return is online.

Any information you enter is stored, available for reference and will pre-populate your next return. 

Register for online returns

When to send in your contribution return 

Employer schedules must be submitted monthly on a combined employer return.

The submission deadline for all employers is 15 days following the end of the month in respect of the information that is required.

Gross earnings

Gross earnings are earnings paid to an employee before any deductions are made.

A Social Security pay period is the same as a calendar month. 

The earnings should be declared for the month in which they were paid, not earned. 

Table showing items not to include in an employee's gross wages

Table showing items to include in an employee's gross wages

How to show holiday pay on a contribution schedule

Many employers pay their employees holiday pay before the normal pay day.

For example: a weekly paid employee is taking two weeks holiday at the beginning of August.

Their wages are £250 per week.

You pay them £750 wages in the last week of July. The normal week’s wage plus 2 weeks for the August holidays.

Actual amount paid
July£1000 + £500 (two weeks holiday pay)

In this example, 2 weeks wages would normally have been paid in August. 

So you have to treat those 2 weeks salary as if you had actually paid them in August. 

You should complete the schedule as follows:

MonthAmount to be shown on the schedule

You deduct Social Security contributions as if the wages were paid at the normal time.

Employees receiving pay after they left your employment

Any wages paid to someone after they have left, must be treated as if it had been paid in the month they left. 

If the payment is one that should be included in gross earnings, Social Security contributions are due and payable.

If you haven’t sent in your combined employer return yet 

​If the return for the month hasn’t been submitted, add the extra pay to that already paid and show the total on the return.

If the total earnings are above the monthly earnings ceiling, only deduct contributions up to the ceiling.

If you have already sent in your combined employer return 

If the return for the month has already been submitted, you'll need to send a replacement return for the month, showing the correct pay. 

Calculating contributions when the income exceeds the standard earnings limit

​Original earnings ​£4,000
​Calculated primary contribution
​Calculated secondary contribution
​Additional pay
​New total pay
​2023 monthly earnings ceiling
​Amended primary contributions (6% up to £5,060)


​Amended secondary contributions (6.5% up to £5,060 and 2.5% on £440)
​£328.90 + £11 = £339.90

How to show Social Security benefit deductions on the combined employer return

This only applies to you if you continue to pay employees the normal wage during illness and the employee gives you the value of the Social Security benefit they receive.

It’s important to adjust the wages on the return in the month the employee was ill.

For each day that we pay benefit, a credit is put on the employee’s account.

These credits protect the employee’s Social Security record against the loss of earnings.

It may be necessary for you to adjust the contributions deducted in a month after the illness if there is a delay in the employee being ill and you being given the Social Security benefit. 

Adjusting the earnings 

An employee is ill for ten days in August and you continue to pay their normal wage.

They give you the value of the Social Security benefit in September after you have submitted the August return.

​Their normal wages are £1,500 per month and the value of the benefit is £254.30

MonthWages Social Security benefit
How the wages should be shown on the replacement return
August£1,500minus £254.30

​You'll have adjusted the employee’s wages and contributions in September.

On the return you must show the adjustment as if it had been made in the month of illness.

Your wage records will be different from the return, make a note in your records that this is due to the Social Security benefit.

Unusual pay practices that reduce or avoid contributions

Employees are usually paid on a weekly or monthly basis, however there may be occasions when this practice is not followed.

We can recalculate the contributions due for all employees back to when the unusual pay practice started. The contributions will be calculated as if a normal pay practice had been followed.​

Calculation of contributions

Calculating the correct deduction

We have an online contributions calculator if you need help to calculate an employee's correct contribution.

You can learn more about how contributions are calculated below.

The contribution month

The earnings should be declared for the month in which they were paid, not earned.

When a payment of wages (normally made in one month) is paid in a different month, it should be treated as being paid at the normal time.

Weekly paid employees

Social Security contributions are deducted in 25 pence steps for weekly paid employees.

This means that you should round the earnings down to £0.00, £0.25, £0.50 or £0.75 before working out the contributions.

For example:

EarningsRounded down to

Keeping a running total of weekly paid wages

Legally you must keep a running total of wages paid to an employee in a calendar month.

Also, primary contributions are only payable on earnings up to the monthly earnings ceiling. Secondary contributions are payable at 6.5% up to the monthly earnings ceiling and then 2.5% charged between the monthly earnings ceiling and the upper earnings ceiling.

If a weekly paid employee receives earnings of more than the monthly earnings ceiling, the contributions must be adjusted.

In this example, it is assumed that the monthly earnings ceiling is £5,060. 

Contribution month one
Week numberEarnings this weekEarnings this month

In week 5, the combined earnings for the month are more than the monthly earnings ceiling by £190 (£5,250 - £5,060 = £190). The final week's salary would have primary contributions of 6% deducted from £860 (£1,050 - £190) and not from £1,050.

Monthly paid employees

Social Security contributions are deducted on round pounds for monthly paid employees.

​Always round the earnings down to the nearest whole pound before working out the contributions.​

Four-weekly paid employees

Normally there is one four-weekly payment in each month and each payment can be treated as a monthly payment.

Occasionally 2 four-weekly payments fall in the same month, so these payments should be added together to give the monthly payment.

Make sure that contributions aren’t deducted on earnings above the monthly earnings ceiling. 


Usually two, and sometimes three, fortnightly payments will fall in 1 month.

​These payments must be combined in a similar way to weekly paid earnings.


As long as the employee earns the weekly minimum earnings threshold or more in the week, earnings need to be declared for contributions.

Payment of contributions

Payment must be made by day 15 of the following month that the contributions are for. For example October contributions are due by the 15 November. ​

At the end of each quarter, a statement of account will be sent to you so you can check your payments.

Pay your contributions bill

If you can’t settle the contributions requested against your own accounts, contact us.

Changes in employees’ circumstances

Turning 16​​

From the first day of the month that an employee turns 16 years old, they must start paying contributions.​

If the employee earns the minimum earnings threshold or more, you have to pay contributions for them.

Leaving employment

​If you have the employee’s Social Security or registration card, give it back to them. ​

Enter the date the employee left your employment on the return.

Working past pension age​

​An employee doesn’t have to pay contributions from the month after they reach pension age.

The employee must exchange their Social Security or registration card for a new registration card.

You must stop deducting 6% from their wages and continue to pay contributions for as long at the employee is working for you. 

This means you must continue to put them on the contributions return and pay secondary contributions of 6.5%.


​Contributions are required for all wages paid up to and including the date of death.​

Wages paid after the death should be ignored when working out what contributions should be paid.

Choosing not to pay contributions​

​Some people can choose not to pay contributions.​

The employee must exchange their current card, marked FR1 (blue card), for a new registration card marked XR1 (red card), once we have approved this. 

They'll ask you for their social security registration card if you still hold it.

You’ll need to carry on deducting primary contributions from their wages until they show you a new red registration card marked XR1.

A photocopy of the card should be kept for your records with a copy of their photographic ID.

Never stop deducting contributions on the word of the employee. The registration card is your only authority.

Choosing to start paying contributions

An employee who has made an election not to pay may cancel it at any time.​

They must change their social security registration card marked XR1 (red card) for a registration card marked FR1 (blue card).

Do not deduct primary contributions from their wages until they give you the registration card.

Employee with a married woman’s election XR1 (red card) divorces​

If a married woman who has a non-paying election becomes divorced, they must start paying contributions from the first of the month following the date of her decree absolute. ​

The employee must tell us that she is divorced and the date of the decree absolute. 

She must also exchange her current card for a new registration card marked FR1 (blue card).

A photocopy of the card should be retained for your records together with a copy of their photographic ID.

​What to do if you make a mistake on your contribution return

If you make a mistake on a contribution return

If you realise that a mistake was made after you've submitted your combined employer return, you need to send in a replacement return.

Missing an employee off the return​​

If you have missed an employee off completely, you must send in a replacement return for the month, including the missing employee.

How to send in pre-2022 contribution information

This information relates to sending in your quarterly employer contributions schedules up to December 2021.

Contribution quarters

A contribution quarter is a 3 month period.

Contribution schedules and payments are collected for the 3 month period at the end of each contribution quarter.

Contribution schedules must be received on or before the 15th day of the month following the end of a quarter.

How to fill in the quarterly schedule

Step 1

Write the Social Security number and name of all your employees on the schedule.

Step 2

When you've worked out the earnings to be shown on the contributions schedule for a particular month, write them on the contributions schedule.

Only put down whole pounds. Don't include pence or the pound sign (£). Write each number in a separate box.

Step 3

 Before returning the contribution schedule to us, check the following:

  • all your employees working 8 hours or more per week are shown on the schedule
  • the correct earnings are entered for each employee
  • employees who have joined you during the quarter have a start date entered
  • employees who left you during the quarter have a left date entered
  • if you know that an employee has left the Island, that an X is shown in the appropriate column
  • if any of your employer details have changed, enter the new details on the back of the schedule
  • you've filled in the Employer's Declaration
  • you've signed and dated the declaration
  • you've not added the spouse or civil partner of the company or business owner

Step 4

Send the contribution schedule to us.

Remember to photocopy the schedule if you want to keep a copy.

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