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Major employers fail to understand stakeholder rules

Big businesses remain apathetic and misinformed about stakeholder, according to research by consulting actuary Punter Southall.

The pension expert surveyed managers in the UK&#39s biggest 250 companies earlier this year. It found that only 10 per cent of employers expect to offer stakeholder schemes to their contractors and 23 per cent to temporary staff.

In fact, both sets of employees may be entitled to membership even though they are excluded from many existing occupational schemes.

The survey also found that 62 per cent of employers do not propose to set up a stakeholder scheme by the official launch date on April 6.

But Punter Southall says businesses will eventually have to set up a stakeholder plan, bringing new business to IFAs with corporate clients.

Principal Steve Leake says: “It is alarming that such a large proportion of big business players fails to appreciate or choose to ignore even the most basic legal commitments enforced on them by stakeholder regulations.

“Those companies which have not yet taken concerted action to address the new rules must seek professional advice immediately. The bottom line is that if they let apathy prevail, they can expect to see a stern letter and a hefty fine from Opra in October when the deadline for implementation expires.”

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