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Joining through my employer

Every employer in the UK is legally required to put certain staff into a pension scheme and make contributions into it – a process called auto-enrolment. This government-backed process is designed to help you save for the future.

Auto-enrolment

If you earn above the required threshold and you’re in the right age group, your employer will have to automatically enrol you into a workplace pension scheme. This means they’ll also make contributions into your retirement pot. However, if you’re not automatically enrolled, speak to your employer as you may be entitled to opt in.

How do I know if I’m eligible for my employer’s workplace pension?

Your employer will write to you to let you know about your new workplace pension and whether you’ll be automatically enrolled. If not you may still be able to opt in. To be eligible you must fit into one of the three categories of workers shown below:

Opting out

If you’ve been automatically enrolled into a NEST workplace pension but don’t want to be a member you can opt out during the one month opt-out period. You have to be enrolled before you can opt out.

Opt out now

The re-enrolment process

If you’re automatically enrolled and you opt out or pause contributions into your retirement pot, you may still be re-enrolled in the future. 

This will depend on the dates your employer is required to follow, and whether you’re still eligible, giving you more chances to think about whether it’s the right time to start saving for retirement. You won't be re-assessed for auto enrolment if you opted out or stopped contributions within 12 months of your re-enrolment date. You can check with your employer when their next re-enrolment date is.

Remember that small steps can make a big difference. The earlier you start, the more money will go into your pot and the more time your savings will have to grow. 

See more about what you might get

Contractual enrolment

Your employer could also use contractual enrolment. This is where they’ll need your consent to become a member of the scheme, typically when you sign your contract of employment. Your consent will enable them to deduct contributions from your salary. If you’re contractually enrolled you won’t be able to opt-out of the scheme but you can cease contributions. If you choose not to join, your employer may still automatically enrol you.

Learn more about contributions

Read more about how the contributions process works and how your pension pot could grow over time.