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Private Pensions

Workplace, personal and stakeholder pensions

Social Security Policy and Legislation Division is responsible for the formulation and development of policy and legislation on private pensions in Northern Ireland.  In general, Northern Ireland’s pensions policy and legislation operates in line with corresponding pension provision in Great Britain. In effect, there is a single system of pensions across the UK.  Additionally, the pensions regulatory regime, for example, the Pensions Regulator, and the Pensions Ombudsman and the Pension Protection Fund operate UK wide.

Automatic enrolment - Latest

Starting with the largest employers first, since October 2012 employers are required to automatically enrol eligible workers into a qualifying pension scheme, if they are not already in one. Both workers and employers pay into the pension, and the Government also contributes in the form of tax relief. Medium and small employers will follow in stages over the next several years.
Automatic enrolment helps to address the issues that prevent people from saving into a pension scheme, such as:
  • pensions saving being complicated and confusing;
  • people simply not getting around to it;
  • a lack of suitable pension products being available for people on low to moderate incomes; and
  • lack of employer pension provision, particularly in smaller firms.
The Pensions Regulator writes to all employers in advance of their automatic enrolment date to inform them of when they need to take action and what they need to do to comply.

Useful contacts

For more information on what this means for you visit:
There is a toolkit to help people understand the workplace pension reforms available from Workplace pension toolkit external link
For more information on the policy and background to workplace pension reform see Helping people save more for their retirement through workplace pensions external link

Workplace pension information line

Phone number: 0845 600 1268
Text phone: 0845 850 0363
Opening hours: Monday to Friday 8.00 am to 6.00 pm
The Money Advice Service website also provides guidance on:

Useful links