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Auto Enrolment Guidance

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Are you one of the 660,000 businesses that needs to have a workplace pension in place in 2017?

If you’ve got one, read no further. But if you haven’t, and you’ve been living under a stone for the last few years, you need to know that the law on workplace pensions has changed.

Under the Pensions Act 2008, every employer in the UK must put certain staff into a pension scheme and contribute towards it. This is called ‘automatic enrolment’.

It doesn’t matter what your business is, if you employ at least one person, you are an employer and you have certain legal duties.

Can you risk not having a workplace pension in place?

If you haven’t got a scheme in place, we’d suggest you act now. The consequences of failing to comply could be serious and could hurt your business. If you don’t have your scheme in place by your staging date your company can be fined daily until the workplace pension has been set up.

This is a one off fine of £400 and then depending on the size of your company, there is a further fine that you have to pay daily until you set up the pension. See the table below:

Number of employees Daily fine
50 – 249 £2,500
5 – 49 £500
1 – 4 £50

So it’s important to put the wheels in motion sooner rather than later to avoid any possible penalties and last minute panic.

If you are the sole director of your business you don’t need a work place pension but you still need to apply for dispensation. Please speak to your accountant about the form you need to complete.

As a qualifying employer this is what you must do:

  • Find out your ‘staging date’ – You can find out here – http://www.thepensionsregulator.gov.uk/employers/staging-date.aspx
    Or ask us to help you.
  • Provide one or more ‘qualifying schemes’, which can include NEST (though we don’t recommend this option – ask us why).
  • Automatically enrol all ‘eligible jobholders’
  • Inform ‘non eligible jobholders’ of the chosen scheme and about their right to opt in
  • Pay a minimum employer contribution on each eligible jobholder’s band of ‘qualifying earnings’
  • Collect and pay over the employee’s contribution
  • Register the scheme with the Pensions Regulator
  • Maintain adequate records
  • Repeat the auto-enrolment process every three years for jobholders who have opted out

How we can help:

  • Help you set up a suitable ‘qualifying scheme’
  • If you have a qualifying scheme in place, advise changes to the scheme and contributions arrangements to ensure it is a ‘qualifying scheme’
  • Assess your workforce
  • Assist with planning and budgeting to prepare for the additional costs
  • Manage communication to staff and recommendations for dealing with their queries
  • Review of payroll systems and advise upgrades where applicable
  • Collecting and paying over contributions and retaining the required records

CBC can offer you a full project management Auto-enrolment service, guiding and advising you through the entire process. Our meticulous planning and attention to detail, will enable the various stakeholders, including payroll, IT and HR to work seamlessly together to provide a pension scheme that runs smoothly from day one and every day after. If you feel like you need a helping hand contact us.


Case studies

Logistics Company

Logistics Company

Approaching us less than two months before their Staging Date meant that there was little time to lose in scoping the company’s requirements...

Manufacturing Company

Manufacturing Company

The current provider could not/would not make the existing scheme, which covers half the workforce, comply with the auto enrolment regulations...


What our clients say

CBC have been wonderful at guiding us through the AE process – complete professionals throughout! They have given us clear information on which to base any decisions, liaised very competently with third parties on our behalf and reacted to our setting up another limited company (and adding around another 20 people to our payroll)l with delight in our success as opposed to additional costs and hurdles. Nothing has been too much trouble and I would have no hesitation in recommending them to other businesses.

Christina Poulton

Finance Manager, Frog Bikes

Michael's knowledge and experience is second to none when discussing Auto Enrolment responsibilities. The fact that the Financial Times has asked for his opinion, when discussing the new Collective DC schemes initiative, shows how highly respected his work and knowledge is.

I would strongly recommend that any company who has not engaged in conversation with Michael in relation to their responsibilities, do so.

Brad Ainsworth DipFA MIFS

Director, Cathedral Wealth Management

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