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Workplace Pension – Auto Enrolment FAQs

How do I opt out of the auto-enrolment pension scheme?

To terminate your membership or choose to opt out, you must first be enrolled in the scheme, meaning SmartWork must have employed you for three months.

After you have been enrolled and made at least one contribution, you will receive a welcome email from The People’s Pension. It will include a link to your pension account, your pension plan number, and a deadline by which you must complete the opt-out process to receive a refund of your contributions.

To opt out, you must activate your account (if you haven’t done so already) and select the option to opt out. If you choose to opt out within the 30-day legal timeframe (the specific deadline will be mentioned in the enrollment email from The People’s Pension), your next payslip will include a complete reimbursement of your pension contributions and no additional deductions will be made.

To opt out, you will need your account number, which you can get by calling 0300 2000 555 (option 5).

For more information, please visit the People’s Pension website by clicking here.

Can I opt back into the auto-enrolment pension scheme?

If you have previously chosen not to opt into the workplace pension but now wish to enrol again, you have the option to opt back in at any time.

Please note that as your employer, SmartWork cannot initiate the opt-in process for the workplace pension on your behalf. Instead, you will need to request this through The People’s Pension. To do so, you can reach them at 0300 2000 555 or via their online contact form.

What is the maximum amount I can contribute to my pension pot?

There is no set maximum amount that you can pay into your pension pot. However, there are limits on the amount of tax relief you can receive. If you are under 75 years old, you can contribute up to 100% of your UK taxable earnings or £3,600 gross (whichever is higher) and receive tax relief on your contributions. The amount of tax relief you receive will depend on your individual circumstances.

The annual allowance is the maximum amount you can contribute to all your pension plans before a tax charge applies. For the current tax year, the annual allowance is £60,000.

You can contribute in various forms, such as regular payments, one-off lump sums, or a combination of both. The maximum contribution includes all contributions made to your pensions, including personal contributions, tax relief, and any contributions made by your employer.

Can I transfer my People’s Pension fund to a different pension provider?

The process of moving and consolidating pension pots has become simpler than before. After your employment with SmartWork ends, you can ask The People’s Pension to transfer your pension pot to another eligible provider. To make this request, you will need to get in touch with one of The People’s Pension’s pension experts. They can be reached at 0300 2000 555 or via their online contact form.

It’s important to note that SmartWork is not involved in this process, as the transfers can only be arranged between pension providers.

What is the tax relief on my pension contributions?

The amount of tax relief you receive on your pension contributions can vary depending on your tax bracket. If you are a UK taxpayer, you are eligible for income tax relief on your employee contributions, up to 100% of your taxable income. However, this is subject to the maximum allowed annual allowance, which is typically £40,000, unless you are a high earner or have already withdrawn funds from your pension.

It’s important to note that any contributions made to your pension account after your 75th birthday will not qualify for tax relief.

The People’s Pension operates a “Net Pay Arrangement,” where contributions are deducted from your gross pay before income tax is calculated. This allows you to receive tax relief immediately, as you are only taxed on the remaining amount. Please remember that national insurance contributions will still be deducted from your income before making pension deductions.