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Pensions regulator investigates 89 firms over auto-enrolment non-compliance

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The Pensions Regulator has initiated 89 investigations into employers over suspected automatic enrolment non-compliance.

Auto-enrolment was launched for the UK’s largest employers in October last year. 

The reforms, which will also capture medium and small firms between now and 2018, require companies to set up a pension scheme for their employees in line with rules laid out by the Government.

The Pensions Regulator, which is responsible for monitoring workplace pensions, says 1,153 employers have registered an auto-enrolment scheme so far, with 8 per cent facing scrutiny over possible non-compliance with their legal duties.

TPR says: “Despite our emphasis on supporting and eliciting compliance, we will take proportionate enforcement action where it is appropriate to do so.

“As of 31 March 2013, we had opened a total of 89 investigations into possible non-compliance by large employers.

“These investigations focused on employer readiness (e.g communication with jobholders) in relation to their duties and helping employers to become compliant.

“We have not yet needed to use our powers to compel compliance.”

Earlier this year, pensions minister Steve Webb confirmed the Government’s intention to ban consultancy charging for auto-enrolment.

The decision led to concern from some in the industry that fewer firms will access auto-enrolment advice, potentially increasing the risk of non-compliance.

However, Webb has insisted firms will not need advice to comply with the rules.

Syndaxi Chartered Financial Planners managing director Robert Reid says: “I am not surprised at all that a significant number of firms are struggling because the communication around auto-enrolment hasn’t been good enough.

“We will see more and more instances of non-compliance as smaller firms reach their staging dates.”

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Comments

There are 9 comments at the moment, we would love to hear your opinion too.

  1. I am glad to see this but it makes me wonder how they are going to cope at ensuring compliance for the tens of thousands 1-10 employee firms get to their staging dates? The may need to employ a lot of staff. These are interesting times

  2. Oh just dandy. Chasing 80 odd firms will cost a sizeable sum. Who pays for this? The taxpayer or us in the FS industry, as usual?

    So they clobber the firms. That means that the profits are less. That means less Corporation Tax. What about shareholders. Stuffed again. Odd isn’t it that the owners of a business come at the end of the queue!

    Oh well as long as the bureaucrats and jobsworths are happy who are we to complain.

  3. Frankly given the complexity of the regulations I am surprised this number is so small.

    When smaller firms get to staging dates this is likely to increase dramatically unless something fundamental is done to simplify these regulations.

  4. Joke

    Steve Web announces to a room of businessmen that advice on auto enrolment is not necessary.

    Said employer takes his word and does nothing to set up scheme.

    Steve Webb sends employer a fine of £10,000 stating advice may not have been necessary but you should have read and understood the 250 page document that I gave you informing you of your employer rights. lol

  5. @Peter

    Joke: Steve Webb!

  6. Reporting here from the Roost. “Well it looks like the first 90 or so of the chickens are back already,
    we still await the return of many thousands more in the Steve Webb chicken roosting trials.”
    Webbie get a grip man.

  7. ‘Webbie the Apprentice’ ‘You’re fired!’

  8. Dont worry folks we’ve fined your employer cos they didn’t play ball with the latest ‘fad’.

    Then again maybe you should worry as you’re now out of a job as your boss had to lay staff off following the fine.

  9. @ Sean
    Well said. I wonder how many jobs will be lost over this latest fad.

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