Enrol changes to ease admin

A series of amendments to automatic-enrolment regulations aim to ease the admin burden on employers.

The proposed changes include an easing of the demands on employers to notify employees if they plan to have a waiting period of up to three months.

Under current Department for Work and Pensions rules, employers can wait up to three months after their staging date before enrolling staff into a pension scheme. During this period, workers can choose to opt in to the scheme if they want to start saving straight away.

The DWP plans to extend the time period in which firms must notify workers about a waiting period and their right to opt in from one week after the employer’s staging date to one month.

It also intends to clarify the definition of basic pay for auto-enrolment after concerns raised about the complexity of the self-certification process for employers.

Pensions minister Steve Webb says: “I welcome the positive response to our consultation. These regulations provide key legal requirements and guidance to help employers start enrolling their staff later this year.

“Automatic enrolment can now begin and start a much-needed seismic shift in pension saving in this country.”

National Association of Pension Funds senior policy adviser Richard Wilson says: “The Government’s decision to extend the deadline for issuing waiting period notices from one week to one month will help businesses by reducing some of the administrative burden that the reforms create.”