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When can a worker opt-out?

The opt-out period is the period of time in which a worker can opt out of the scheme and receive a refund of any contributions they’ve made. You’ll need to inform your workers about this option before you enrol them into NEST. Please see our statutory information when enrolling a new worker for more information on informing your workers about their new pension rights.

The opt-out period starts three working days after the worker’s enrolment and lasts for one calendar month. It’s important to note that once the opt-out period has ended, the worker isn’t entitled to a refund. If the worker has requested an opt-out form from NEST they must hand over their opt-out form to you within the opt-out period.

If you receive an opt-out form within the worker’s opt-out period but don’t let NEST know until the opt-out period has ended, we’ll still recognise the opt-out as valid but we may already have invested the contributions and deducted a contribution charge.

If the current value of the worker’s pot is lower than the original contributions, we’ll refund this lower amount and the contribution charge. It’s therefore best to make sure that you tell us about opt-outs as early as possible.

The opt-out period doesn’t start until three working days after enrolment to allow time for us to send a Member welcome pack to each worker. The welcome pack contains a personalised enrolment letter, a Welcome to NEST brochure, the worker’s unique NEST ID and a link to the opt-out page on our website.

You can check when a worker’s opt-out period ends by going to the ‘Manage workers’ area of your online account.

Click ‘Manage workers’ and you’ll see the Opt out expiry date for each of the workers listed who are still in their opt-out period.

You can hold on to a worker’s contribution during their opt-out period, instead of paying them to NEST. If you decide to hold on to contributions, please see How can I hold on to contributions during a worker’s opt-out period?

You won’t need to make further contributions for workers who’ve opted out.

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