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Workplace Pensions - Employers' Obligations

Changes to the law on pensions mean that every employer in the UK has to automatically enrol certain workers into a pension scheme.

Are you ready for Auto-Enrolment?

You should start getting your business ready 6-12 months before your staging date. We can help you get ready in time.


All employers will have to provide workers with a workplace pension scheme (also known as auto-enrolment) by law.

You must make an employer's contribution to the pension scheme for those workers.

When will I need to act?

Each employer will be given a date from which the changes will have to be in place. This is known as your auto enrolment 'staging date'. Your staging date will be broadly based on the number of people you have in your PAYE scheme.

As a small or medium business, your staging date is likely to be between 2014 and 2016. The pension's regulator will contact you 6 to 12 months before your staging date.

Staging Date

Check your staging date with The Pensions Regulator.

If you don't already offer one you must set up a workplace pension scheme before your staging date.

Who do I need to put into a pension scheme?

You must enrol all workers who:

  • are aged between 22 and the State Pension age
  • earn at least £10,000 a year
  • work in the UK

  • Employees that don't meet the criteria above may also be able to opt in to a pension scheme and you will be obliged to enrol if they ask to be, however, the rules and requirements on contributions will be different and you may not need to make an employers contribution for those people.

    Does your existing scheme qualify?

    If you want to continue using your existing pension scheme you need to check that it meets the qualifying criteria. For more help on this Checkout information on The Pensions Regulator site

    If it does qualify, you can carry on using it as normal for existing scheme members. If you want to use it to automatically enrol new members, it will need to meet some additional criteria.

    Key points to note:

  • If you're a UK employer, auto enrolment will affect you.
  • You will need to 'enrol' certain employees into a workplace pension scheme.
  • This will start from your 'staging date', although you can postpone if necessary.
  • You must communicate the changes to your employees that have been affected.

  • The value of pension and the income they produce can fall as well as rise. You may get back less than you invested.

    The Financial Conduct Authority does not regulate Auto-Enrolment.