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The new rules
The government’s auto enrolment pension reforms have been up and running since 2012. At the start the new pension duties only applied to the largest employers, but now it’s time for smaller businesses to get ready.
If you own a business that employs one or more workers you’ll have to:
- set up a workplace pension scheme that meets the new rules
- automatically enrol workers who meet the age and earnings criteria
- make a minimum contribution for all eligible workers
- enrol other workers if they ask to join the scheme
What you need to do now
- Know your staging date
This is the date that you need to start enrolling your workers into a workplace pension scheme. If you don’t already know your staging date, you can find out from The Pensions Regulator’s website
- Check if you have any workers to enrol
You only have to automatically enrol workers who are earning at least £10,000 a year and aged over 22 but under State Pension age. If you don’t have any workers like this, you don’t have to set up a scheme but you’ll have to let The Pensions Regulator know.
- Choose a suitable scheme
Even if you have a pension in place already, you’ll need to make sure that it meets the standards set by the new duties.
- Decide what you’ll contribute
When you set up your scheme you’ll need to tell HMRC how you intend to make your contributions and what they’ll be. The minimum you’ll have to pay currently is 1 per cent of a worker’s qualifying earnings.
- Get all your information in order
To set up your scheme, you’ll need to tell HMRC about your organisation, bank account details for paying contributions and facts and figures about individual workers.