Auto Enrolment | The State of Play

Auto Enrolment | The State of Play

Auto Enrolment | The State of Play

  • By the end of March 2017 more than 7,000,000 workers had been successfully automatically enrolled.….and more than 500,000 employers had completed their declaration of compliance.
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  • There are 700,000 employers with duties by February 2018.
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  • Between 2016-17 The Pension Regulator issued 12,181 £400 fixed penalty notices.

Headline from The Pension Regulator:

Staff need to be enrolled before they can opt out:

As outlined in their latest compliance and enforcement bulletin, during the inspections they have been carrying out across the country they came across a number of instances where employees had agreed to opt staff out of a workplace pension before they’d been enrolled.

If employers do this, it means they are not complying with their duties in the correct way and may risk a fine if they appear to be making the decision to opt out on behalf of their staff. Eligible staff need to be enrolled first – they can only opt out if they wish to after being enrolled.

Case Study:

This London-based car hire company had a staging date in January 2016. They sent a letter to their staff, telling them they’d soon be automatically enrolled, and that if they wanted to opt out ahead of this time they should sign and return the form.

In early April of this year we carried out an inspection as part of our compliance validation drive. They had claimed to have zero workers, but our intelligence suggested otherwise.

The employer claimed that ill health, financial difficulties and bad advice from their accountant had contributed to their failure to comply. Their accountant had drawn up the letter that was sent to employees, with a tear-off slip asking them to fill it in if they wanted to opt out.

As the employer had failed to put any of their staff into a pension scheme, we sent them a compliance notice, warning them that we would ne them unless they quickly put things right.

Six weeks later they sent us proof of their compliance, the letters they’d sent to their staff and confirmation that they’d automatically enrolled the 13 people who were eligible. They also provided evidence that they’d backdated over a year’s worth of contributions to their original staging date, and were finally compliant on 8 June 2017.

What does the future hold?

Re-enrolment and Re-declaration

As Auto Enrolment started back in October 2012, the number of companies coming up to their 3-year anniversary is on the rise:

More than 80,0000 employers are approaching their re-declaration deadline over the summer months.

Increased Contributions

As of April 2018 both the employer and employee contributions will rise:

Phase       DurationEmployer Minimum ContributionTotal minimum contribution

  To 5 April 2018

  6 April 2018 to 5   April 2019


6 April 2019

If you require any support on re-declaration, new auto enrolment schemes or managing the increase in contributions please get in touch:

0333 222 4450

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