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Firms could face £163.4bn fines over stakeholder

Legal & General claims the Government can expect to get nearly £163.4bn from UK businesses through stakeholder non-compliance.

The figure represents what the life office calls a “windfall bonus” made up of thousands of £163.50,000 maximum fines imposed on employers for failing to offer their staff access to a stakeholder scheme by the October 8 deadline.

L&G says its research indicates the Government can expect to take £163.3.86bn from firms which either do not offer access to a pension, do not intend to or are undecided about offering one.

The research was conducted last month among 1,000 employers, with the sample weighted to represent around 1.6 million small businesses in the UK.

The £163.3.86bn figure was reached by working out the number of employers who were aware of stakeholder but not currently offering a pension scheme of any type and not intending to or undecided whether to do so.

This number was then weighted to represent UK businesses as a whole, giving 77,200 businesses which can expect to pay £163.50,000 fines.

Pension strategy director Adrian Boulding says: “Small employers have got to get their act together if they do not want to fall foul of the stakeholder legislation and end up paying part of this huge windfall bonus to the Exchequer. This figure should act as a wake-up call to employers.”

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