All change: pensions auto enrolment revisions take effect from 1st October 2017

All change: pensions auto enrolment revisions take effect from 1st October 2017

All change: pensions auto enrolment revisions take effect from 1st October 2017

The Pensions Act 2008 ensures that every employer in the UK must contribute to workplace pensions for their staff.  This process is known as ‘automatic (auto) enrolment’, and it has become a familiar feature of the induction procedure for new joiners.

Previously, The Pensions Regulator informed companies of their ‘staging date’, by which all their auto enrolment duties needed to take effect.

From 1st October 2017, the staging date will be replaced by a ‘duties date’ for new employers.  This means that, for employers who are taking on staff for the first time, legal duties for automatic enrolment will begin on the first day the new staff member starts work.  The duties date will apply even if just one person is to be employed for the first time.

One particularly significant change the duties date brings is that the start of the auto enrolment process can now take place on any day (previously this would be on the first day of the month).  Additionally, it could be that new employers will need to commence auto enrolment duties before obtaining a bank account or PAYE reference.

As previously required, new staff must be assessed to establish if they meet the criteria for auto enrolment into a pension scheme.  Staff must be aged between 22 and up to State Pension Age, and earn over 10,000 per year (£833 per month, or £192 per week).  A Declaration of Compliance must be submitted to The Pensions Regulator, even if none of your staff meet the auto enrolment criteria.

The Pensions Regulator website provides dedicated guidance for new employers, as well as advice for companies that have employed new staff before 2nd April 2017.

As the months fly by, for employers already well-versed in the auto enrolment process, please note that April 2018 will herald changes to pension contributions as follows:

Pension Contributions from April 2018

Date  Employer minimum contribution  Total minimum contribution 
Employer staging date to 5th April 2018 1% 2% (including 1% staff contribution)
6th April 2018 — 5th April 2019 2% 5% (including 3% staff contribution)
From 6th April 2019 3% 8% (including 5% staff contribution)

Our expert payroll team at Rickard Luckin are happy to assist with any queries relating to auto enrolment.  Simply contact us on 01268 548127 or email payroll@rickardluckin.co.uk.

Hannah Dumenil

Payroll Manager
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