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UK pension scheme auto-enrolment opt-out rates average nine per cent, says DWP


Opt-out rates among employees who have been auto-enrolled in workplace pensions average nine per cent, according to the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP).

This question of opt-out rates will be of critical interest over the next few years as the whole point of the auto-enrolment programme is to increase participation rates in workplace pensions.
Most employers experienced opt-outs in a range of five per cent to 15 per cent.
These results are significantly better than the pre-event forecasts which had predicted opt-out rates of up to 30 per cent.
Even among employers who had previously used auto-enrolment programmes (using contractual rather than statutory auto-enrolment), participation rates have still increased, from 90 per cent up to 96 per cent.
The highest opt-out rates are among the over 50s.
Tom McPhail (pictured), head of pensions research, Hargreaves Lansdown, says: “These early results are encouraging however there is still a great deal of work to be done, the largest employers were always likely to produce the best results so the real challenges still lie ahead. By the end of 2014 we’ll have a much better idea of whether we really are getting to grips with the pensions crisis.”

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