Category Archives: pension age

How To Implement The NEST Pension

Employers who are looking for a simple cost effective pension scheme in order to comply with NEST pensionpension auto enrolment may like to consider implementing the NEST pension which has been developed by the government.  NEST is ideal for  small and medium sized businesses and helps employers comply with pension auto enrolment statutory legislation.

Employers may plan to implement NEST in accordance with their staging date or may bring their staging date forward as a volunteer employer.  It is important to first know when the staging date is before making a decision.

The first stage of implementing a NEST pension is to contact NEST ( and register to obtain an account.  It is important to finalise set up within 90 days of the first contact otherwise the whole process must begin again.

NEST should be provided with information about organisation – PAYE reference and contact information.  There should be a main contact in the organisation but additional delegates can be given access.  Worker groups and payment sources must then be added.

The workforce must be assessed according to age, salary and status.  They should fall into three separate categories  – eligible job holders, non-eligible job holders and entitled workers.  An employer must make pension contributions for eligible and non-eligible job holders but does not have to for entitled workers.

If implementing NEST and bringing the pension auto enrolment staging date forward employees should be written to at least one month before the proposed staging date.  Details on the NEST pension should be provided and as part of the pension auto enrolment process eligible workers should be offered the ability to opt out.  They have one month in which to opt out.  Any pension contributions that have been taken must then be refunded.  A consultation meeting should be offered so employees can discuss any concerns and queries about the process.

If an employer is voluntarily entering NEST they must get signed agreement from the employees to make deductions.

It is important to get NEST permission to auto enrol early.  This can be done by contacting NEST and completing a form over the phone which goes to the compliance department.  It is important to do this in good time in order to prevent any delays in meeting the planned earlier staging date.

If bringing the staging date forward the Pension Regulator must be informed in writing.  This can be done online using a 10 digit reference code that the employer will need to obtain or may done by letter or email.  This should be done in good time and at least a month before the earlier staging date.

The information to be provided is:

  • Employer name.
  • Employer PAYE scheme reference(s) eg 123/4AB (you can find this on your P35 employer annual return). Please include all PAYE scheme references that you operate.
  • The new (earlier) staging date chosen and your original staging date.
  • Employer’s address (including postcode) and email address.
  • The name of the owner or most senior accountable person at the employer (optional).
  • Companies House registration number or equivalent, eg registered charity number, VAT registration number or industrial provident society number.
  • A declaration from the employer that they have contacted a pension scheme and have obtained the agreement of the trustees or managers, provider, or administrator, that the scheme can be used to comply with the employer duties from the new (earlier) staging date.
  • Your name.
  • Your job title within your organisation.
  • Your contact telephone number, email address and business address.
  • Your own declaration that you are authorised to apply for a change of staging date.

Employee information should be provided to NEST.  This can be done manually or via a CSV file upload.  Employees will then be sent a welcome pack from NEST which will contain their ID number.  

Payroll should be set up for employer and employee contributions and NEST should then be provided with an employer/employee contribution schedule.

Employers should make contributions to NEST no later than the 22nd of the month after contributions have been taken.

It’s important to allow plenty of time in planning and implementing the process.  From experience this is a very heavily admin based procedure and there may be hiccups along the way.

Call 0845 241 1868 if you need assistance with implementing the NEST pension.




Growth In Older Worker Employment

Recent statistics have shown that there has been a huge rise in the number of people aged over 50 becoming employed.  The fastest rate of increase is with those people aged 65 (older women in particular) with almost one million people in that age bracket in the working population.  The rise in “oldies” employment accounts for 20% of the increase.  However the growth in employment of the older worker is not the detriment of younger workers.  Currently 30 % of older workers work in managerial and professional jobs with only 14 % in sales, care and leisure jobs; this is in complete contrast to younger people where 34% work in that sector and only 9% in managerial and professional jobs.   Older people provide effective role models to the young who can gain from their valuable knowledge.

There may be several reasons why older people are working longer.  In some cases employers want to retain their valuable skills and experience sometimes offering flexible working patterns.  For some older workers their pension may be inadequate, they fear the rising cost of living or they feel fit and healthy and willing to remain the workplace.  There is also a growing group of self-employed who want to remain connected to the business world.   Being employed means older workers have better standards of living which they would lose if they gave up employment. 

In 2011 the default retirement age was abolished, therefore, people can work longer and not be compulsorily retired.  An employer can only force someone to retire with objective justification. 

At the moment men can take their state pension from the age of 65, for women it may vary between 60 and 65.  However with the rising cost of pensions and life expectancy the government is planning to raise the age of retirement to 66 in 2020 for both men and women and to 67 in 2026.