Key questions and answers for all employers on the new legal responsibilities

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FAQs on Auto Enrolment

Listed here are a few answers to the many questions we get asked about Auto Enrolment. If you have a burning question that we haven’t answered, please give us a call and we will be happy to help.

When will the law affect me?

You will already have a compulsory date at which you will need to have sorted out the workplace pension AND have enrolled your qualifying staff. Larger companies are already enrolled and have workplace pensions. Your compulsory date is called the “Staging Date”. We can check your date for you.

What do I need to do and when?

Before your fixed Staging Date you will need to have assessed your workforce to see who’s eligible to join your pension scheme, chose a pension scheme and set it up and communicate to the staff about the process and choice.

What if I don’t comply?

The government are taking this extremely seriously and have tasked The Pensions Regulator and given them a range of enforcement powers. These range from £50 to £5,000 per day for not compliance with a statutory notice and they have confirmed that they will pursue 100% of non compliance cases.

When can I get started to avoid the rush?

For peace of mind it is important to act early and identify an appropriate workplace pension scheme and get registered. At this point you will be Auto Enrolment Ready and will avoid any risk of non compliance for registration and the expected last minute rush.

I already have a company pension scheme?

Even if you already have a company pension scheme you will need to review the arrangements to ensure it meets the minimum requirements for auto enrolment. You will also need to review your responsibilities for employees not currently in the scheme or new employees.

Can an employee use Salary Sacrifice to contribute to the pension?

Yes. An employee contribute into their pension through salary contributions or bonus contributions. This can have the effect of reducing their taxable salary and your NI contributions, while they are making contributions towards their future pension. Salary Sacrifice can be a complicated issue but we can liaise with your accountant and IFA if you would like to investigate this option.

Can I “encourage” my staff to opt out?

The Pensions Regulator will be monitoring activity very closely and is likely to pick up on cases where all staff members have opted out of auto enrolment.

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