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137,000 firms still failing to comply with stakeholder

The ABI says a “special effort” will be needed to get the estimated 137,000 remaining employers yet to designate a stakeholder scheme to comply with legislation.

The estimates, based on its figures to the end of Sept-ember, suggest that between 87,758 and 137,758 employers were not complying with stakeholder legislation requiring them to designate a scheme for their employees.

But the ABI says the figures show a sharp rise in the pace of scheme designations and anticipate that many more employers are likely to have designated a scheme in the final weeks before the Oct-ober 8 deadline.

The latest figures show that a total of 65,146 additional employers designated schemes during September, bringing the total to 212,242 from 147,096 at the end of August. The number of actual policies rose by 59,507 to 415,805 from 356,298 at the end of August.

The figures cover stakeholder sales made by 47 out of the 48 registered stakeholder providers from both the trade body and non-ABI member groups and includes transfers to stakeholder from other pension arrangements.

There is no exact number for the employers required by law to designate a stakeholder scheme for their employees but, of the 400,000 UK emp-loyers with five or more emp-loyees, evidence from the Department for Work and Pensions suggests that only between 50,000 and 100,000 are likely to be exempt from designating a stakeholder pension scheme, leaving a total of 300,000-350,000.

ABI head of media and political affairs Alan Leaman says: “There was a quickening of pace in September but the remaining companies will be the most difficult to contact and will require a special effort by the Government and the industry to raise awareness.”

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