Royal Assent for Workplace Pension Access for 18yr olds

Published / Last Updated on 19/09/2023

We have already reported in this news section that the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) had tabled new laws to apply automatic enrolment rules in workplace pensions to be required for 18yr. olds rather than from age 21.

The Pensions (Extension of Automatic Enrolment) Act 2023 received Royal Assent yesterday, i.e., it is now law.

The DWP is now consulting on an implementation date.  This is a date that:

  • 18-year-old workers must be automatically enrolled in their workplace pension
  • The current minimum earnings threshold of £6,240 pa, where you and your employer must pay into a pension for you (unless opted out) will disappear meaning that every £1 that you earn will be liable to pension contributions.
  • This means that even those who work just a few hours a week and earn less that £6,240 pa (minimum earnings threshold) will now be eligible for employer pension contributions.
  • It will also mean a hit for smaller employers with even larger pension liabilities.


This is great news for younger workers on minimum wage as workplace pension contributions will start 3 years for younger workers and with the power of investments compounding over the next 40 years or so will mean a younger minimum wage worker should build up a workplace pension some £85,000 more than they would have done.

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