How pension auto enrolment affects you and your business in Gloucestershire
Auto enrolment staging dates
It all starts with your auto enrolment staging dates. From your staging date, your company will need to automatically enrol certain employees (known as ‘eligible jobholders’) into a suitable workplace pension scheme and start making contributions to those employees’ pension pots.
The key to starting to plan for auto enrolment is to know your staging date. You can find your staging date for auto enrolment by using the calculator on The Pensions Regulator’s website.
The date your automatic enrolment duties start is called your staging date and is when the law comes into effect for you. It can be found on the letters about automatic enrolment that were sent to you.
There are several tasks you’ll need to complete before your staging date to be ready to comply with your duties – for example, choosing a pension scheme.
Give yourself plenty of time before your staging date to prepare for automatic enrolment. This will allow you time to plan your finances, and find the best pension scheme for your staff and to carry out other tasks listed in this guide.
If you don’t know your staging date, you can find it using your PAYE reference. If you don’t pay your staff through a PAYE scheme, your staging date will be 1 April 2017.
The following steps will help you organise your payroll process and pension scheme as you prepare to meet your automatic enrolment duties from your staging date.
- Work out your costs
- Check your records and payroll process
- Choose a pension scheme (or check your existing one)
What happens if you don’t comply with the pension auto enrolment?
There are certain employer duties you must comply with. If you fail to comply with your duties, we may take enforcement action and issue a notice and / or a penalty.
- The responsibility for complying with the employer duties rests with the employer.
- If you don’t comply, you’ll face enforcement action in line with our risk-based approach.
- 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.
The overall approach
The Pensions Regulator can issue guidance and instruction by telephone, email, letter and in person. Or they can send a warning letter confirming a set time frame for compliance with the duties.
Statutory notices can direct you to comply with your duties and / or pay any contributions you have missed or are late in paying. They have further discretionary powers which allow us to estimate and charge interest on unpaid contributions and direct you to calculate and / or pay unpaid contributions.
They can issue penalty notices to punish persistent and deliberate non-compliance.
A fixed penalty notice will be issued if you don’t comply with statutory notices, or if there’s sufficient evidence of a breach of the law. This is fixed at £400 and payable within a specific period.
They can also issue an escalating penalty notice for failure to comply with a statutory notice. This penalty has a prescribed daily rate of £50 to £10,000 depending on the number of staff you have.
They can issue a civil penalty for cases where you fail to pay contributions due. This is a financial penalty of up to £5,000 for individuals and up to £50,000 for organisations.
Where employers fail to comply with a compliance notice or there is evidence of a breach, they can issue a prohibited recruitment conduct penalty notice. This penalty has a prescribed rate of £1,000 to £5,000 depending on the number of staff the employer has. They aim to fully recover all the penalties that they issue.
So if you want help with your auto enrolment pensions administration- you can either ring us now on 01242 583001 – email us on firstname.lastname@example.org or click the Contact Us button or please fill the form at the bottom of the contact us page.