Who is this guide for?

This is a guide for lay members who we've invited to sit on one of our committees, panels, or groups. Lay members include patients, service users, carers, lay topic experts and patient experts. 

How much will I be paid?

You can claim an attendance fee of:

  • £150 per full day meeting (4 hours or longer)
  • £75 per half day meeting (shorter than 4 hours).

Meetings can be face-to-face or virtual (teleconference or video conference). The payments do not mean you have a contract of employment with NICE or one of our partner organisations.

You can only claim an attendance fee for meetings you have taken part in. If you attend part of a meeting, you can only claim for the time you attended. 

The attendance fee is classed by HM Revenue & Customs as income - it may affect your benefits. Find out more about how the attendance fee could affect benefits payments.

How to claim

You can claim for expenses and the attendance fee using our online expenses system. If you haven't used the system before, make sure you watch our expenses system tutorial

When you claim you'll be asked to give a 'reason code'. Use the reason code: PIPlaymemberexpenses.

How long will it take?

After you've submitted your claim, it'll be processed by the Public Involvement Programme. Your payment will be transferred into your account within 3 weeks. It'll show up on your bank statement as 'SEL' or 'Selenity'. 

If you need to claim for something, make sure you get an invoice or receipt and keep hold of it - you'll need to submit it when you make a claim.

What can I claim for?

Travel to and from meetings

We encourage people to use public transport to get to our meetings, as this is better for the environment. We will:

  • contact you before the meeting to arrange transport that meets your needs
  • book and pay for your tickets.

If you're unable to travel on public transport because of special circumstances, we can talk about other options with you. 


Some of our meetings run for more than one day, or start in the morning. Because of this, depending on where you live, you may need overnight accommodation.

We'll book and pay for suitable accommodation for those who need it. Before we do this, we'll contact you to find out if you have any special requirements. 

Food and drink

You can claim an allowance for food and drink - we call this 'subsistence'. There are different amounts you can claim for, depending on how long you are away from home. 

You can find out more about this in our non-staff reimbursement policy.

Special requirements

We'll cover the costs of certain special requirements. This could include:

  • hiring a British sign-language interpreter to attend meetings with you
  • hiring a support worker to help you take part in the meeting if you have a learning disability.

If you have a special requirement, you can contact us to chat about your needs further. 


You can claim reasonable childcare costs for:

  • pre-school aged children (including babies)
  • childcare outside of school hours for children and young people of school age. 

What we pay

We pay 2 different rates:

  • A flat-rate contribution of £25 for out of pocket expenses if your children are looked after by someone not registered with Ofsted, for example a family member or friend.
  • The reasonable hourly or daily rate of an Ofsted registered agency or individual.


If you need to hire a carer or support worker, you can claim for this. You may need to hire a carer or support worker if you normally care for another adult or a disabled child. 

You can claim for a carer or support worker to care for a family member until you get home from a meeting.

What we pay

We'll cover reasonable costs for a professional registered carer or support worker. 

If a family member or friend provides the care or support needed, you can claim a flat fee of £25.

Printing and equipment

If you have a particular need or disability that means working from a screen presents problems, you can claim for printing meeting papers or slides at home. There is a fixed rate per meeting of £5. This is a temporary policy during the COVID-19 pandemic when NICE staff are working from home. Once staff are able to return to the office, you will be able to request printed copies of meeting papers.

If you need additional equipment to fully participate in virtual meetings, speak to the staff running your committee. You can claim for equipment up to the value of £50, providing you have staff approval before you make the purchase.


Lay members aren't classed as employees of NICE, or contractors. This means they're responsible for paying any income tax or National Insurance. 

We only pay lay members directly, rather than through a company. 


If you claim for out of pocket expenses as well as carer, childcare, or support costs, this shouldn't affect your benefit payments. But it's important that you remember to save your receipts. 

Attendance payments may affect benefit payments, as they are classed as income by HM Revenue & Customs. This depends on different factors, such as which benefits you receive, and the amount. Find out more about how lay member payments affect benefits

Contact us

Still can't find what you're looking for? Contact our Public Involvement Programme, who will be more than happy to help you. 

Email: PIPlayexpenses@nice.org.uk

Telephone: 0161 870 3020