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UK employers have to automatically enrol their staff into a workplace pension if they meet certain criteria.

The law on workplace pensions has now changed and every employer must comply. You may be thinking … "Does automatic enrolment apply to me?" and the answer is that Automatic enrolment affects all employers with staff in the UK. See more detail FAQ below taken from The Pensions regulator website. There is a lot to think about to comply with these new rules but we have it all covered !

We can provide you with the full service of complying with automatic enrolment which include:

  • Setting up the Pension Scheme you have chosen
  • Checking your staging date and make suitable plan to ensure compliance
  • Initial communication to workers
  • Fully administer the auto-enrolment as part of our Payroll service
  • Assess eligible workers and auto-enrol them into pension scheme
  • Process Opt-in / Opt-outs by workers
  • Calculate and notify you of amounts to be paid to the Pension provider
  • Communicate full required information to your workers
  • Submit information to pension provider
  • Annual compliance declaration to the Pension Regulator

Contact us today to discuss how we can help you comply fully with the automatic enrolment

Does automatic enrolment apply to me?

Key points

  • Automatic enrolment affects all employers with staff in the UK.
  • You must enrol certain staff into a pension scheme.
  • You must start doing this from your staging date, though there is an option to postpone automatic enrolment for up to three months.
  • You must write to all your staff to tell them how they’ve been affected.

What is automatic enrolment and why do I have to do it?

People are living longer yet too many people are under-saving or not saving at all for what could be a long retirement. The law on workplace pensions has changed to make it easier for millions more people to build up a pension, particularly those on lower incomes.

Automatic enrolment means that, rather than having to actively choose to join a pension scheme, staff are put into one by their employer as a matter of course. If they don’t want to be in the pension scheme, they must actively choose to opt out. It’s to encourage people to stay in pension saving.

When will I have to do it?

Automatic enrolment duties come into force for you from your ‘staging date’. You can find out your staging date by entering your PAYE reference into the tool on the Pensions Regulator Website.

You will have the option to postpone automatic enrolment for up to three months from your staging date. If you decide to do this, you won’t need to enrol anyone until the end of the postponement period.

Who do I need to put into a pension scheme?

You must automatically enrol all staff who are:

  • aged 22 to state pension age
  • working in the UK
  • earning over £10,000 a year.

Some staff who don’t meet the criteria above are able to opt in to the pension scheme you’re using for automatic enrolment. You must put them in if they ask.

You’ll have to pay a minimum employer contribution for all staff you put into this scheme.

Certain other staff can ask to join a pension scheme. You must put these staff in a scheme, but the rules are different and there’s no requirement for you to pay an employer contribution.

It’s the age and earnings of a member of staff that determines what ‘type’ of worker they are and therefore what duties you’ll have for them.

What else do I need to do?

You’ll need to write to each member of staff individually to tell them how they’ve personally been affected by automatic enrolment.

The information you’ll need to tell them is different depending on their rights and the duties you have for them. You must also provide certain information to the regulator about how you’ve complied with your duties.

What happens if I don’t comply?

  • The responsibility for complying with the employer duties rests with the employer.
  • If you don’t comply, you’ll face enforcement action by the pensions regulator.
  • Enforcement action starts with statutory notices and is followed by penalty notices. Further non-compliance may result in court action.
  • If you have received a penalty notice, you can now pay your notice online on the pensions regulator’s website.

Where do I start?

The first thing you should do is find out your staging date. Once you know when this is, you can start planning to make sure you’re ready in time.

Start planning early, You will need to make some changes to allow for automatic enrolment, such as:

  • setting up a pension scheme or modifying an existing one
  • making any necessary changes to payroll so it can handle the new requirements
  • putting systems in place to monitor the ages and earnings of your staff (your payroll provider may be able to do this)
  • writing to your staff.

Get in touch

Why not drop us a line or fill in our very quick enquiry form


Oculus Accountancy, 83 Victoria Street, London SW1H 0HW


020 3950 1170

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