Workplace Pensions

Department for Work and Pensions written question – answered at on 30 May 2023.

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Photo of Martyn Day Martyn Day Shadow SNP Spokesperson (Health and Social Care)

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, whether he has made an assessment of the implications for his Department's policies of requiring employees who have opted out of a workplace pension scheme to be automatically re-enrolled every three years.

Photo of Laura Trott Laura Trott The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Work and Pensions

The government continues to advocate for the importance of pension saving which offers greater financial resilience in later life. Automatic Enrolment (AE) has transformed pension participation rates, with 86% of eligible private sector employees saving into a workplace pension in 2021, up from 42% in 2012.

AE was deliberately designed with an opt-out to give people choice, enabling them to decide if saving for a pension is right for them given their circumstances and affordability.

This is why when an individual makes the decision to pause or cease contributions, the AE framework requires their employer to re-assess and re-enol their eligible employees every three years, which prevents individuals from falling out of pension saving in the medium to long term.

The re-enrolment regime has been successful, seeing 1 million eligible job holders automatically re-enrolled since the introduction of AE in 2012.

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