The introduction of the National Employment Savings Trust (NEST) has been in the press recently following a government review of the scheme.

The headlines that employers will have to start making pension contributions for all of their employees from 2012 are somewhat misleading as the majority of employers will not need to comply with the rules from that date. The start date for the roll out of the scheme is October 2012 but this will impact on employers with 120,000 employees or more. For those with a more modest workforce the start date varies, for example those with less than 500 employees the date is 1 January 2014 and for those with less than 50 employees the earliest start date is 1 August 2014. ‘The requirement to be NEST compliant starts from October 2012 and will vary dependent on size of business and PAYE reference number. The Regulator will write to all employers around 12 months before their staging date so that they know when to automatically enroll their eligible jobholders. Three months before the employer’s staging date the Regulator will write again to remind them of the new duties and the need to register.’ Employees eligible for automatic enrollment will be: - those who aren’t already active members of a qualifying scheme - are aged between 22 years and the State Pension age and - earn over £7,475 gross a year.