Income discount

The income discount scheme provides a 50% discount on your annual retention fee.


The discount is available to you if you:

  • are registered with or without a licence to practise
  • pay an annual retention fee or pay a full registration fee that has not already been reduced
  • your gross taxable income during your registration year is less than £32,000.

Income thresholds

The income threshold is £32,000. We define income as your gross annual worldwide income from all sources, including:

  • pensions
  • investment income
  • maternity pay
  • sick pay
  • any kind of benefit.

You should calculate your income between your annual retention fee dates, not your income earned in the tax year.

For example:

If your annual retention fee due date is 1 August and you're applying for the year 2021–22, you can apply online from 1 May 2021 until 1 November 2022.

The discount is not automatically applied to subsequent years; you must submit a separate application for each year that you are eligible.

If you are not able to apply online, please complete the income discount application form and email it to us.

How the discount will work

If you apply for the income discount online before the start of your registration year and you are eligible for a discount, you will receive an immediate confirmation. When you receive your annual retention fee notice it will reflect the discount and confirm the amount payable.

If you apply after receiving a fee notice, or part way through the year and have not yet paid your fee in full, we will contact you to confirm your updated account balance. You can then view and pay your adjusted fee online.

If you pay by Direct Debit, we will adjust your payment plan and give you advance notice of the changes. 

If you have already paid your fee in full, we will process a refund within ten working days of granting the discount.

Confirming your eligibility

If you apply for income discount at the beginning of your annual retention fee year based on your estimated income, you will need to confirm you eligibility at the end of the same period. This is to confirm that you actually earned less than the £32,000 threshold. We will contact you to do this towards the end of your registration year. You can confirm your eligibility by logging into GMC Online.


I’m on maternity, parental or adoption leave – can I apply for a reduced fee?

If your income falls below £32,000 you can apply for the income discount.

We don’t currently have a discount specifically for doctors on maternity, parental or adoption leave. However, we’re reviewing our policy this year. We’ve recently been made aware that some doctors may miss out on the income discount if their maternity, parental or adoption leave spans two registration years and as a result, their income wouldn’t fall below the threshold in either year. If you’re in this situation, please contact us.

We recognise the need to allow doctors on maternity, parental and adoption leave to access a discount if their income falls below the threshold, irrespective of the time of year their baby is born.

What should I do if I my income has gone over the threshold?

If you applied for income discount and later realise that you are going to earn more than the £32,000 threshold, you must let us know so that we can withdraw the discount. You can do this by logging into GMC Online.

If your income changes and takes you over the threshold for future years that you have not submitted applications for, you do not have to do anything. This discount is not automatically applied each year, so your fee will be returned to the full fee.

Do I need to submit evidence of my income?

We may ask you for evidence of your gross annual income to support your application.

The evidence we ask for may include:

  • proof of earnings – copies of three payslips within the year the discount was applied, a copy of your P60, or an end of year tax statement (P21)
  • details of any self-employed income, such as an end of year tax statement (SA302)
  • a statement showing pension, social security benefits or tax credits paid to you
  • a statement showing any interest or dividends from savings and investments
  • copies of three bank statements within the year the discount was applied. 

If we ask for information or evidence of your income and you’re not able to supply it, we may withdraw your discount.