Historically where an individual receives non-executive director’s fees from a company (but where they are not employed by that company) they would be liable to pay non-employed Class 3 contributions on that income.
For 2015 the Department has set parameters on the amount of fees that can be received by a non-employed person before they will be classed as self-employed and liable to Class 2 contributions.
The level of fees being set by the Department is 4 times the Lower Earnings Limit (ie £27,248 per annum from 2015). So, if the annual fees exceed this amount they will be subject to Class 2 contributions, otherwise they will remain liable to Class 3 contributions.
Class 3 contributions are payable on an individual's total income including investment income, whereas Class 2 contributions are only liable on the income received from self-employment.