Insured Guide

In this section you will know how to obtain a National Insurance Number and Card, replace your card, how long does it normally take to get registered, the different types of cards and what is this number used for. Use the provided link to complete access further content pages.

The purpose of this Guide is to give general information to the insured person as to his / her rights and obligations under the National Insurance Scheme. If more specific information is required on any aspect of the Scheme, please contact any office of the National Insurance Board. It is important whenever you communicate with any Office of the National Insurance Board to indicate your national insurance umber which has been allocated to you at the time of your registration as an insured person.

REGISTRATION

Obligation for Registration

Every person who is an employee on 15/2/1992 and every person who becomes an employee after 15/2/1992 must register with the National Insurance Scheme within 14 days from 15/2/1992.

Application for Registration

To register, the employee and the employer must complete and submit to the nearest office of the Board, the Insured Person’s Registration Application Form. Every employee must therefore ensure that his employer properly registers him/ her promptly within the prescribed time.

Registration Card

Once registered, the employee is allocated a national insurance number and a registration card is issued bearing his/ her name and national insurance number. The employee is responsible for the safe custody of the registration card and must produce his card to his employer when commencing employment with a new employer or whenever the employer may ask for its production.

Replacement cards will be issued at a fee of $20.00.

PERSONS INSURED

Persons Compulsorily Insured

The Scheme insures compulsorily every person gainfully occupied in the Islands either as an employed or self-employed person. Employed persons are those working for an employer under a contract of service or employer-employee relationship and include employees of the Government and apprentices. Self-employed persons are those persons who are gainfully occupied in the Islands otherwise than as employees, that is, persons working on their own account.

Voluntary Contributors

An insured person who has paid at least 50 contributions as an employed or self-employed person can apply for a Certificate of Voluntary Insurance which entitles him to pay Voluntary Contributions. The application for a certificate of voluntary insurance is made on Form Ins.002 and must be submitted to any office of the Board not later than the end of the contribution year which follows the year which includes the contribution weeks for which the insured person wishes to make voluntary contributions.

Failure to apply for a Certificate of Voluntary Insurance within the prescribed time may result in the rejection of the application.

CONTRIBUTIONS

Liability for Contributions

In the case of an employee, there is liability for contribution for every week in which he receives earnings from his employer of not less than $25.00 per week if he is a weekly-paid employee or $108.00 per month if he is a monthly paid employee. In the case of an apprentice there is always liability irrespective of the amount of earnings. In the case of a self-employed person there is liability for contributions for every week in which he works as a self-employed person. Liability for contributions ceases when the insured person reaches the age of 65.

Assessment of Contributions

In the case of an employee, contributions are assessed on his / her earnings and include all payments from his employment with the exception of ex-gratia payments. In the case of an apprentice with no earnings or with earnings below $25.00 per week, contributions are assessed on earnings of $25.00.

No contribution is payable on earnings exceeding $600.00 per week in the case of a weekly paid employee or $2,600.00 per month in the case of a monthly paid employee. In the case of a monthly paid employee, the earnings for the month are accepted for the contribution weeks beginning in the month for which there is liability for the payment of contributions.

In the case of a self-employed person, the contributions are assessed on the weekly income he has elected for the purpose of contributions.

The self-employed person can elect, subject to certain limitations, a weekly income of $100.00; $200.00; $400.00; or $600.00

In the case a Voluntary Contributor, the contributions are assessed on the average weekly earnings or income on which compulsory contributions were paid or credited in the year preceding that in which the application for voluntary insurance has been made.

Rates of Contributions

In the case of employees other than public officers, the rate of contribution is 8%: 4.6% payable by the employer and 3.4% payable by the employee. In the case of Public Officers, the rate of contribution is 6.85%: 4.025% payable by the employer and 2.825% payable by the employee.

The rate of contribution for self-employed persons is 6.8%; voluntary contributors is 5.5%.

Payment of Contributions

In the case of employed persons, the employer has to pay his portion of contribution and that of the employee. He can deduct however, the employee’s share from the earnings paid to the employee for the period for which the contributions are payable and not otherwise.

In the case of an apprentice earning less than $25.00 per week, the employer has to pay the total rate of contribution on the difference between the actual earnings of the apprentice and $25.00.

The employer has to pay contributions for all his employees before the end of the month following the month in which the contribution weeks for which there is liability for contributions begin.

The self-employed person has to pay his contributions for all contribution weeks beginning in any calendar month not later than the end of the following month.

The voluntary contributor can pay his contributions for contribution weeks beginning in any year not later than the end of the following year. Failure to pay contributions within this prescribed time results in the cancellation of the validity of the certificate of voluntary insurance. In such a case the insured person can apply for a new Certificate of Voluntary Insurance after he has paid 50 contributions as an employed or self-employed person.

Contributions payable by employers, self-employed persons or voluntary contributors can be paid in cash or by cheque at any of the offices of the Board.

Crediting of Contributions

A contribution shall be credited to an insured person:

  • For every week after he reaches age 16 and before he attains age 23 that he is receiving full time education; and
  • For every week for the whole of which he is entitled to Invalidity Pension, Sickness Benefit, Maternity Allowance, Injury Benefit or Disablement Pension for disablement assessed at 100%
  • A contribution credited under paragraph (a) above is assessed on earnings of $25.00, whereas a contribution credited under paragraph (b) is assessed on the earnings on the basis of which the benefit has been paid.

In addition to the above credits, special credits are awarded to persons over the age of 48 on April 6, 1992 and to persons who become invalid.

For an insured person over the age of 48 on April 6, 1992, 50 contributions are credited for each year that his age exceeds 48 years subject to a maximum of 350 credits. These special credits are taken into account for assessing the amount of retirement pension only and to the extent necessary to enable the insured person to qualify for a 30% retirement pension. In the case of invalidity or death, special credits are awarded for the contribution weeks in the period following the week of invalidity or death until the week before the week in which the insured person would reach age 60.

These special credits are taken into account for assessing the amount of pension only and are not taken into account for determining eligibility to the pension.

BENEFITS

Types of Benefits

The Scheme provides the following benefits:

  • Retirement Pension / Grant
  • Invalidity Pension
  • Survivors’ Pension / Grant
  • Funeral Grant
  • Sickness Benefit
  • Maternity Allowance / Grant; and Employment Injury Benefit which includes Injury benefit
  • Disablement benefit
  • Death Benefit
  • Death Grant; and Medical Care
  • Non-Contributory Old Age Pension

Employed persons are entitled to all the above mentioned benefits but Public Officers are not entitled to Sickness Benefit and Maternity Allowance. Self-employed persons are entitled to Sickness Benefit, Retirement Pension or Grant, Invalidity Pension, Survivors’ Pension or Grant, and Funeral Grant. Voluntary Contributors are entitled to all self employed person’s benefits mentioned above except for Sickness Benefit. In addition to the above benefits, a Non-Contributory Old-Age Pension is payable subject to certain qualifying conditions of residence.

Retirement Pension

A Retirement Pension is payable to an insured person on or after attainment of age 60 if he satisfies the relevant contribution conditions and he retires or is no longer substantially employed. The retirement condition ceases to apply when the insured person reaches the age of 65. An insured person is considered to be substantially employed if he /she is employed in insurable employment as an employee and his / her earnings are at least $40.00 per week or if he / she is employed in insurable employment as a self-employed person for at least 15 hours per week. The contribution conditions are that the insured person has paid contributions for at least 150 weeks (3 years) and has at least 500 weeks (ten years) paid or credited contributions. The minimum weekly amount of the pension is 30% of the ‘average weekly earnings’ for the first 350 weekly paid or credited contributions increased by 2% of the earnings for each unit of 50 paid or credited contributions of the next 250 and 1% of the earnings for each unit of 50 paid or credited contributions after 750. The pension cannot exceed 60% of the earnings and cannot be less than $50.00 per week, and in the case of an insured person who has paid less than 250 contributions, cannot exceed $100.00 per week. The average weekly earnings is the average weekly earnings of the claimant in the 3 years with the highest earnings within the last 10 years before retirement.

Retirement Grant

If the insured person reaches age 65 and does not satisfy the contribution conditions for Retirement Pension but has paid contributions for at least 50 weeks, he will be entitled to a Retirement Grant in the form of a lump-sum payment. The amount of the lump-sum will be equal to two times the average weekly earnings for every unit of 50 paid or credited contributions.

Invalidity Pension

Invalidity Pension is payable to an insured person who is under the age of 60, becomes permanently incapable of work and satisfies the relevant contribution conditions. The contribution conditions are that the insured person must have paid contributions for at least 150 weeks in the last 3 years before the commencement of invalidity; have at least 60 paid or credited contributions; and in addition, must have 8 such contributions in the first 13 weeks from the last 26 weeks immediately before the commencement of invalidity.

How much is Invalidity Pension

The amount of Invalidity Pension is assessed in the same manner as Retirement Pension with a minimum pension of 30% of the average weekly earnings or $50.00 per week, whichever is higher and a maximum pension of 60% of the average weekly earnings. The Invalidity Pension is payable as long as the insured person remains incapable of work, but when the insured person reaches the age of 60 years the Invalidity Pension will be converted to a Retirement Pension.

Survivors’ Pension

In the case of death of an insured person who was receiving Retirement Pension or Invalidity Pension or who at the time of his death would have been entitled to a Retirement Pension or Invalidity Pension had been deemed to be permanently incapable for work, a survivors’ pension shall be payable to the widow or widower and the children of the deceased as follows:

A Widow’s Pension is payable if at the time of her husband’s death:

  • She was pregnant by the deceased or had the care of a child of his under 16; or She was over the age of 50 or permanently incapable of self-support;
  • A Widower’s Pension is payable to the widower if at the time of the death of his wife: he had the care of a child of hers under 16; or he was over the age of 60 or permanently incapable of self-support.
  • A Child’s Pension is payable in respect of each child who is a minor if the child at the time of the death of the parent was living with him or was wholly or mainly maintained by him.

Who Is Considered A Minor

A child is a minor if under 16 or between the ages of 16 and 21 if unmarried and attending full time education or over 16 if unmarried ad permanently incapable of self-support. The Survivors’ Pension is payable as long as the conditions continue to be satisfied. The payment of Widow’s/Widower’s Pension ceases with the re-marriage of the beneficiary and the Child’s Pension when the child becomes of age. The amount of the Widow’s/Widower’s Pension is 50% of the Retirement or Invalidity Pension of the deceased, and the Child’s Pension 40% if incapable of self-support and 25% in any other case. Where the total amount of Survivors’ Pension payable to all beneficiaries exceed the amount of the pension of the deceased, the amount of the pension payable to each beneficiary is reduced proportionately.

Survivors’ Grant

Where the deceased at the time of his/her death does not satisfy the contribution conditions for Retirement Pension or Invalidity Pension but would have been entitled to a Retirement Grant, Survivors’ Grant in the form of a lump-sum will be paid to his/her survivors in the same proportion as the Survivors’ Pension. The amount of the lump sum is equal to the amount of the Retirement Grant which would have otherwise been paid to the deceased.

Funeral Grant

A Funeral Grant is payable in respect of the death of:

  • A beneficiary of Retirement Pension, Invalidity Pension, Survivors’ Pension or Non-Contributory Old-Age Pension any insured person who at the time of his death satisfies the relevant contribution conditions; the dependant spouse or child of a beneficiary to a pension; and
  • The dependant spouse or child of an insured person who at the time of death was his dependant and satisfied the relevant contribution conditions.
  • The contribution conditions are that the insured person has paid contributions for at least 26 weeks and has at least 8 paid or credited contributions in the first 13 weeks of the last 26 weeks immediately preceding the week in which the death occurred. The amount of the grant is $1,200.00 if the deceased was an insured person and $800.00 in any other case.

Sickness Benefit

Sickness Benefit is payable to an insured person under 65 years of age who becomes incapable of work by reason of some specific disease or bodily or mental disablement and satisfies the contribution conditions. The contribution conditions are that the insured person has paid contributions for at least 26 weeks, has at least 8 paid or credited contributions in the first 13 weeks of the last 26 weeks preceding the week in which the first day of the continuous period of incapacity for work occurred and he was engaged as an employed person immediately prior to the day on which the first day of the incapacity occurred. The benefit shall be paid for a maximum of 156 days in any period of incapacity for work. The first 3 days of incapacity will not be paid. The weekly amount of the benefit is 60% of the average weekly earnings in the period of the first 13 weeks of the last 26 weeks preceding the week in which the first day of the continuous period of incapacity for work occurred.

Maternity Allowance

Maternity Allowance is payable to a woman in the case of pregnancy and confinement if she satisfies the contribution conditions. The contribution conditions are that the insured woman has paid contributions for at least 26 weeks and has at least 8 paid or credited contributions in the first 13 weeks of the last 26 weeks preceding the 5th week before the expected week of confinement or in which occurs the day for which the allowance is claimed, whichever is the later. The Maternity Allowance is payable from a date not earlier than five weeks before the expected week of confinement and continuing until the expiration of 12 weeks or 6 weeks from the week in which the confinement occurs, whichever is the later. The weekly amount of maternity allowance is 60% of the average weekly earnings in the period of the first 13 weeks of the last 26 weeks preceding the 5th week before the expected week of confinement.

Maternity Grant

A Maternity Grant is payable to a woman who has been confined if at the time of confinement, she or her husband satisfies the contribution conditions. The contribution conditions are that the insured person has paid contributions for at least 26 weeks and that at least 8 paid or credited contributions in the first 13 weeks of the last 26 weeks preceding the week in which the confinement occurs. The amount of the grant is $400.00 (four hundred dollars).

Employment Injury Benefit

(a) Injury Benefit

  • Injury benefit is payable to an insured employed person who is incapable of work as a result of an injury caused by an employment accident or disease.
  • Injury Benefit is payable for a period of 12 months from the date of the accident but will not be paid for the first 3 days of incapacity for work. The weekly amount of Injury Benefit is 60% of the average weekly earnings in the last 13 weeks before the week in which the accident occurred.

(b) Disablement Benefit

Disablement Benefit is payable to an insured employed person who as a result of an employment injury or disease suffers permanent loss of physical or mental faculty of a degree of 10% or more. The degree of disablement will be determined by a Medical Board. If the degree of disability is between 10-19%, a Disablement Grant shall be payable and if the degree of disability is 20% or more, a pension shall be payable. The amount of the pension for 100% disability will be 60% of the average earnings in the last 13 weeks before the week in which the accident occurred. If the amount of the pension for disability is less than 100%, it will be proportionate to the degree of disability. The Disablement Grant is a lump-sum which is equal to 220 times the average weekly earnings multiplied by the degree of disablement.

Death Benefit

Death Benefit is payable in the case of death of an insured employed person as a result of an employment injury or disease. This benefit includes Widow’s / Widower’s Death Benefit, Child’s Death Benefit and Parents Death Benefit.

I. A Widow’s Death Benefit is payable to the widow if at the time of her husband’s death was pregnant by the deceased or had the care of a child of his under 16, or was over the age of 50 or permanently incapable of self-support.

II. A Widower’s Death Benefit is payable to the widower if at the time of the death of his wife, had the care of a child of hers under 16 or was over the age of 60 or permanently incapable of self-support.

III. A Child’s Death Benefit is payable in respect of each child who is a minor if the child at the time of the death of the parent, was living with him or was wholly or mainly maintained by him.

IV. A Parent’s Death Benefit is payable in respect of each parent who was wholly or mainly maintained by the deceased, provided that the total Death Benefit payable is not exhausted by the surviving spouse and children.

The Death Benefit continues to be payable as long as the conditions continue to be satisfied. The payment of Widow’s/Widower’s Death Benefit ceases with the re-marriage of the beneficiary and the Child’s Death Benefit ceases when the child becomes of age. The total amount of Death Benefit payable is 60% of the average weekly earnings of the deceased person in the last 13 weeks before the week in which the accident occurred. Widow’s / Widower’s Death Benefit is 50% of the total Death Benefit. Child’s Death Benefit is 25% and if the child is incapable of self-support, 40%; Parent’s Death Benefit is 40%. When the amount of Death Benefit payable to all beneficiaries exceeds 60% of the average weekly earnings of the deceased, the amount payable to each beneficiary is reduced proportionately.

Death Grant

A Death Grant is payable in respect of the death of:

  • an employed person who dies as a result of injury caused by an employment accident or disease;
  • a person who at the time of his / her death was entitled to Death Benefit; or
  • the dependant spouse or child of a person entitled to Death Benefit.
  • The amount of the Grant is $2,000.00

Medical Treatment

In addition to cash benefits, an employed person who suffers personal injury as a result of an employment accident or occupational disease will be entitled free of charge to such medical treatment provided by the Government medical services as is necessary. Medical Treatment will include medical, surgical and dental treatment as an in-patient or out-patient at Government hospitals or clinics and pharmaceutical supplies.

Non-Contributory Old Age Pension

A Non-Contributory Old-Age Pension is payable to a person who attains the age of 68 years and has residence in the Islands for 20 years since attaining the age of 40 or 30 years since attaining the age of 16. The Non-Contributory Old-Age Pension is not payable to a person who is in receipt of any other pension or similar payment from any other source.

GENERAL BENEFIT PROVISIONS

Husband and Wife

For the purposes of Survivors’ Benefit or Death Benefit, a single woman or widow living with a single man or widower and vice versa will be considered as wife or husband as the case may be as if there has been a legal marriage.

Duplicate Rights

A person who is entitled to two or more benefits paid periodically at the same time will be entitled only to receive the benefit payable at the highest rate and if the benefits are payable at the same rate, to the benefit which was first awarded.

However, a person is entitled to receive two or more disablement pensions at the same time provided the total degree of disablement for which the pensions are payable does not exceed one hundred percent (100%).

Persons Abroad

A person will be disqualified from receiving any benefits payable periodically during periods of absence from the Islands unless the benefit is a Disablement Pension or Retirement Pension payable to a person over the age of 65.

The Board, however, may allow the payment of such benefits where the beneficiary is outside the Islands, having regard to the special conditions and circumstances of the case, particularly in instances of ill health.

Persons Undergoing Imprisonment

A person will be disqualified from receiving any benefit payable periodically for any period during which he is undergoing imprisonment or detention in legal custody. In the case of such disqualification, half the amount of the benefit will be paid to the dependent spouse or children of the beneficiary.

Claiming Benefits

It is a condition to a person’s right to benefit that he makes a claim within he prescribed time. A claim for a benefit is made in writing on the application form approved by the National Insurance Board and is submitted to any office of the Board together with the certificates, documents and other information that are necessary for deciding entitlement to the benefit in question.

The time prescribed for making a claim for any benefit is shown in column (2) below opposite each benefit. If the claimant does not claim within the time shown in column (2) and shows good cause for the delay, the prescribed time for claiming each benefit may be extended as shown in column (3).

Time Limits for Claiming Benefits

Benefit

Prescribed Time For Claiming

Extended For Good Cause

Retirement Pension

3 months

6 months

Retirement Grant

3 months

6 months

Survivors’ Pension

3 months

6 months

Survivors’ Grant

3 months

6 months

Invalidity Pension

3 months

6 months

Funeral Grant

6 months

12 months

Sickness Benefit

6 days

13 weeks

Maternity Allowance

21 days

13 weeks

Maternity Grant

6 months

12 months

Injury Benefit

6 days

13 weeks

Disablement Pension

3 months

6 months

Disablement Grant

3 months

6 months

Death Grant

6 months

12 months

Non-Contributory Old-Age Pension

3 months

6 months


Failure to make a claim within the time prescribed disqualifies a person from receiving a benefit for any period falling outside the prescribed time if the benefit is paid periodically and in the case where the benefit is paid by way of a lump-sum, disqualifies a person from receiving the benefit.

Extinguishments of Right to Receive Benefit

A person will lose his right to payment of a benefit if he fails to cash the cheque within six months from the date of its issue.

Appeals

A person who is aggrieved by any decision connected with insurability and contributions or with a claim for benefit may appeal against the decision taken. If the decision has been taken by the Director on a question of insurability and contributions, the aggrieved person can refer the question for determination by the Board. An appeal against a decision of the Board on a point of law only can be made with the leave of the Court to the Supreme Court. The appeal must be made within 21 days from the date the decision has been given.

If the decision is connected with a claim to benefit taken by the Director, a person aggrieved may appeal against that decision within 21 days from the date it was given to an Appeal Tribunal. A further appeal from the decision of an Appeal Tribunal to the Supreme Court is possible on a question of law only.

Benefit for any period falling outside the prescribed time if the benefit is to Receive Benefit A person will lose his right to payment of a benefit if he fails to cash the cheque within six months from the date of its issue.