Auto enrolment affects all employers with workers in the UK. You’ll need to enrol certain workers into a qualifying company pension scheme, make contributions to their pension fund and perform other duties too.
What is a Auto Enrolment?
On 1 October 2012, the government introduced new pension legislation for businesses. Under the rules, employers have to automatically enrol eligible workers into a company pension scheme, if they aren’t already in one.
You need to start performing these duties from what’s known as your ‘staging date’, although there is an option to postpone some duties by up to three months.
It takes at least six months in most cases to prepare for auto enrolment. You’ll need to prepare as early as possible to give yourselves enough time!
There are a number of actions to take before your staging date
- Make sure your existing pension scheme is a qualifying scheme (if applicable);
- Determine the cost of auto enrolment and inform Finance so it can be budgeted;
- Secure a pension scheme (normally requires at least 3 months notice);
- Discuss the support (software) that will be available from your payroll provider and pension provider to deal with the complex administration of the pension scheme and determine the cost of this support;
- Determine any data cleaning or collection exercise that needs to be carried out before staging;
- Determine how you would like to phase in the pension contributions (eventually increasing to at least 8%);
- Communicate the new pension scheme to employees;
- Determine the process for automatically enrolling employees each month;
- Provide information to employees as required at staging and on an ongoing basis
- Register your pension arrangement with the Pensions Regulator
- Certify your scheme as a qualifying scheme on an ongoing basis to the Pensions Regulator.
There are lots of considerations and work to do before your staging date and in our experience the planning stage can throw up many unexpected issues that can take time to resolve.
This is a new processes for employers, it’s complex and extremely deadline-driven. Do you have the time, expertise and internal resources to deal with this alone?
DGS are experts and we’ve already helped many complex businesses with earlier staging dates to comply with auto enrolment and the new rules. We are well placed to guide and support you through your entire auto enrolment journey.
Penalties for non-compliance! Ouch!
Non-compliance implications include the following:
The Pensions Regulator can issue compliance notices requiring you to take steps to remedy the breach. If a breach is not remedied it may result in the issue of a fixed penalty of £400, as well as escalating daily penalties.
The escalating penalties are based on the number of employees you have. The amount of the daily penalty ranges from £50 per day, if you have between one and four employees, up to £10,000 per day, if you have more than 500 employees.
Get in touch with us…
It’s better to get a clear understanding of the new pension rules before you start the planning process. We provide a free no obligation auto enrolment one to one advice and guidance session.
Our corporate advisers will take you through a step by step guide to complying with ‘your’ auto enrolment requirements, allowing you to get fully up to speed with what needs to be done and when by. It’s advised that you start planning for auto enrolment around 6 months before your staging date.
How can DGS help you?
We advise you on the most cost-effective way to carry out auto enrolment and will provide you with a clear project plan, outlining what needs to be done, by whom and by when.
Our services include:
- Pension Scheme Advice – We will help you select a compliant pension scheme and advise you on features such as deciding contribution levels and eligibility criteria.
- Set Up & Implementation – we advise and assist with the implementation, ensuring a smooth process and we’ll also help you with one of the most important and personal parts of the auto enrolment process, communicating the changes to your people.
- On-Going Support – We provide ongoing support to your business, including monitoring your auto enrolment process, answering your questions and employee queries and keeping you compliant . We also help you report back to the Pensions Regulator.
We act as your Pensions Manger, taking you through the whole process painlessly! We are also a Chartered Financial Planning firm, so are well equipped to talk to your people about pension planning and retirement.
AUTO ENROLMENT ADVICE TO AN EMPLOYER IS NOT REGULATED BY THE FINANCIAL CONDUCT AUTHORITY
For a free consultation to discuss your Auto Enrolment requirements together with any other financial needsContact Us today
"DGS have been incredibly supportive with regards to our businesses auto enrolmentrequirements and have been involved during the planning and execution stage. They provide a knowledgeable and personable service and work well with our HR team. I urge anyone with auto-enrolment challenges to meet with DGS to ensure compliance and understanding."
Nina Marshall, Head of Human Resources, The Orchid Group, HertfordshireSee what more of our clients say