Pension Auto Enrolment, also known as Automatic Enrolment, is a new law that means all employers must automatically enrol their workers into a workplace pension scheme. Although this process is automatic for your staff because they don’t have to do anything, it’s not automatic for the employer and there are steps you need to take in order to ensure your staff are enrolled.
The scheme applies to every employer who has at least one member of staff who earns more than £10,000 a year and are between the ages of 22 and State Pension age.
Every employer has a date by which they need to comply with the law and this is called your staging date. You can use the Pensions Regulator staging date calculator to check if the law applies to you and when you will be enrolled. Although the calculator has been designed for employers, it also works for employees.
Once you know your staging date and whether you qualify or not, the next stage is to let The Pensions Regulator know who will be responsible for managing the process and who their point of contact should be. Over the next few months this person will be emailed all the help and support they need to get Automatic Enrolment set up correctly.
There are a number of tasks that need to be completed prior to your staging date. For example, assessing your workforce to determine who is and isn’t eligible, choosing a pension scheme and then communicating this information to your staff. To help you prepare for this efficiently, The Pensions Regulator provide an automatic enrolment action planner which maps out exactly what you need to do and by when.
Once you have put your staff onto your pension scheme, you will have ongoing responsibilities. You will need to ensure that contributions are paid, keep records of this and constantly review your staff and don’t forget to include new starters.
Once you have completed everything, don’t forget to contact The Pensions Regulator to let them know that you have complied with your duties. You should receive a declaration of compliance after your staging date and this is what you need to return.
If you haven’t done so already, it’s important to get on top of this process because it can take up to 12 months to prepare. This is a legal duty and if you don’t comply, you could face a fine. If you have any further questions about Automatic Enrolment from whether or not you qualify to how you get yourself set up, please feel free to contact Windsor Accountancy and we will be more than happy to help.