IFAs believe employers have failed to take in the implications of
stakeholder, according to a survey by Scottish Equitable.
Out of nearly 2,000 IFAs interviewed by the life office, fewer than 4 per
cent thought that employers understand stakeholder.
Under stakeholder rules, all firms employing five or more staff must make
some form of pension arrangement available to their employees by October
ScotEq says the survey confirms its fears that small and medium-sized
companies are failing to think about stakeholder. It claims the findings
highlight how the Government faces a struggle to promote and effectively
communicate the stakeholder message to its target audience of five million
Pensions development director Stewart Ritchie says: “It is worrying that
employers are so blissfully unaware of their obligations under stakeholder.
Ignoring stakeholder is not an option and employers doing this could face a
hefty fine from the Occupational Pensions Regulatory Authority.”
Ritchie says IFAs are ideally placed to ensure that employers are aware of
their dut-ies ahead of stakeholder's introduction in 2001.
He is urging them to contact corporate clients now in order to turn the
tide on employer ignorance of stakeholder.
Ritchie says: “IFAs are ideally placed not only to get them up the
stakeholder learning curve but to help them plan the best approach to
dealing with pensions in the stakeholder environment.”