There is a minimum total amount that has to be contributed by you, your employer, and the government (in the form of tax relief).
These minimums are generally: 5% from you (which includes tax relief) and 3% from your employer.
The minimum contribution applies to anything you earn over £6,240 up to a limit of £50,270 (in the tax year 2021/22). This slice of your earnings is known as ‘qualifying earnings’.
So, if you were earning £18,000 a year, your minimum contribution would be a percentage of £11,760 (the difference between £6,240 and £18,000).
Some employers apply the pension contribution to the whole of your earnings, not just to qualifying earnings.
This depends on how they’ve set up the scheme. If you’re not sure whether you pay pension contributions on qualifying earnings or on full earnings, talk to your employer.
Your employer will let you know how much of your earnings you’ll need to contribute.
They might tell you this as a sum of money or as a percentage.