Workplace pension contribution percentage increases in 2018 and 2019

and what this means for employees

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Once you’ve been enrolled or opted in to a workplace pension, contributions start at 2% of your earnings. They go up in 2018 to 5% of your earnings and from 2019 onwards they are currently set at 8% of your earnings.

From when you were first enrolled or opted in until 6th April 2018, your contributions have been set at 1% and your employer will have been contributing 1% also. From April 2018 until April 2019 you will contribute 3% and your company will contribute 2% and after April 2019 you will contribute 5% and your company will contribute 3%. In all cases*, the Government will give you 20% tax relief on your (employee) contributions.

This means that, in effect, employees are actually contributing 0.8% in 2016, 2.4% in 2017 and 4% from 2019 onwards.

*Tax relief cannot be given if you do not have a valid National Insurance number

To Apr 2018 To April 2019 After April 2019
Employee 0.8% 2.4% 4%
Employer 1% 2% 3%
Government 0.2% 0.6% 1%


When the pension percentage contributions increase in April 2018 and April 2019 you will notice more money being paid into your pension pot from your earnings each pay day. Your employer contributions will be increasing too. If you decide that you no longer want to contribute to your pension you have a couple of options, you can Cease Active Membership or you can reduce your contributions to a lower amount each pay day. In both cases you will be leaving the pension scheme but in the latter you will continue to make voluntary contributions instead of the mandatory contributions in line with a compliant workplace pension. In order to cease active membership, you will need to contact your pension provider and inform them that you wish to cease. You will also need to let your employer know that you are ceasing membership. Employees can do this via their Paycircle portal.

Use our Pension Contributions Calculator to see how much your contributions will be and how they’ll change over the next few years.

If you would like more information on your choices you can contact your pension provider or contact our support team, who will be able to explain your options.

Catherine Pinkney

Posted on Wednesday 21 Mar, 2018, 2 years ago

June 16, 2020

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