Initially, when Automatic Enrolment was first introduced, each business was allocated a date by which they had to comply with the Auto Enrolment Legislation (a staging date) – with smaller businesses having to comply later. However, a change this year means that if a business becomes an employer for the first time on or after 1st October 2017, it will need to start complying with auto enrolment duties straight away.
Instead of having a future staging date, their “duty start date” will instead be the day on which the first worker begins to be employed. Heavy fines can be imposed on businesses which fail to meet their auto enrolment obligations.
These obligations include setting up a workplace pension scheme, assessing workers for eligibility, providing the required communications to staff, making employer pension contributions and collecting employee contributions through payroll.
New employers will still be able to utilise the 3-month postponement period, providing that postponement letters are sent to the workers within 6 weeks of their start date.
Complying with auto-enrolment duties should now be part of your normal process when recruiting a new member of staff – just like issuing the employment contract and setting up the payroll.
Should you have any queries on this matter, please do not hesitate to contact us here at the office and we will be happy to assist you on this matter.