Help Centre for Employers

Will an employee / member get all their money back if they opt out?

Yes, if they opt out within the opt out period.

When an employee opts out within the time frame given in the regulations (currently one month after receiving their joining letter), any contributions deducted will be returned to the employee. The employer is responsible for repaying any employee deductions made back to the employee via payroll. This repayment to the employee must be made as soon as possible.

If they opt out after the opt out period, they will be treated as though they left the scheme and will not be able to claim any contributions back. Some employees may be eligible for a short service refund, but only if they were enrolled to the scheme before 1 October 2015.

It should be noted that a short service refund only relates to the employee contributions and will be subject to tax. Contributions made by the employer or under a salary sacrifice agreement cannot be refunded.

To find out whether an employee is eligible fo

pension refund, auto enrolment refund

r a refund, see ‘Who is eligible for a short service refund?’

An employee can opt back in at any time. See How can an employee opt back in? for more details.

Related resources

What is an opt out period?
Who is eligible for a short service refund?
Who processes and pays opt out refunds to the individual and the employer?

...its simple design means the pressure is taken off us as the employer and avoids costly administration charges, whilst removing the burden of choice and ensuring the best possible retirement outcome for our employees. — Matthew Johnson, Head of Compensation and Benefits at Adecco Group UK & Ireland
Over a short period of time, NOW: Pensions has established itself as a respected and credible player in the UK workplace pensions market attracting thousands of employers and hundreds of thousands of members. Joining the team at such a crucial time… — Jocelyn Blackwell, Founder of Dunnett Shaw and Raising Standards in Pensions Administration
I am backing NOW: Pensions, the ATP project, because I believe it will encourage transparency, low costs and decent returns for millions of British employees. — Nigel Waterson, former Shadow Pensions Minister
ATP comes to the UK pensions world with the highest commendations from the Danish trade unions, employers and government. NOW: Pensions' offering in the UK will be high quality, low cost, and honest and I'm proud to be associated with it. — John Monks, member of House of Lords and former General Secretary of ETUC and TUC
“We were impressed with the simplicity of its scheme. The ease of implementation was also a big plus for us and has removed much of the administrative headache.” — Neil Tune, HR director at Fitness First