We assist clients on a daily basis to comply with Pension Automatic Enrolment duties. We have found that clients are often confused about what Automatic Enrolment means for them. Clients are unclear about what they are required to do and when they are required to do it.
We have also provided some examples of common problems faced by several of our clients and the remedial action we have taken to solve these problems. Our main focus is always to ensure clients remain compliant with the Pension Automatic Enrolment requirements.
We have a good working relationship with the Pensions Regulator and often contact them to discuss issues on behalf of our clients.
Although liaising with the Pensions Regulator is not a hugely onerous task it can be an important step in ensuring our clients are compliant with their Automatic Enrolment duties. Even if an employer sets up a work place pension and begins contributing to that scheme failing to properly complete and submit the Declaration of Compliance can render the employer as non-compliant. In this situation an employer could face a financial penalty.
We are delighted to be in a position to use our Pension Automatic Enrolment knowledge to the benefit of our clients.
What our clients have to say about us
The Cashroom Ltd administer our monthly auto-enrolment scheme. Liaising directly with the provider they incorporate pension calculations within the monthly payroll. The support is crucial for compliance with our statutory obligations.
Aru Sinha- Cavendish Legal Group – London
Ardnamurchan Estates Ltd has worked with The Cashroom for the last three years initially for our payroll service but since June 2016 for the Pension Automatic Enrolment. For a small company being able to make use of The Cashrooms’ experience with this process has ensured that we have complied with the Government Legislation stress free and with minimal additional effort.
Ardnamurchan Estates Ltd – Ardamurchan
Common Problems Faced by Clients
Not all problems faced by our clients are straight forward.
Pension Automatic Enrolment clients have approached us with various problems including:
- Missing a Staging Date
- Failing to set up a Pension Scheme on a Pension Provider’s website
- Wishing to postpone a Staging Date but uncertain as to the process
- A general lack of understanding of an employer’s Automatic Enrolment duties
- Failure to realise that a Declaration of Compliance required to be submitted
- Failure to realise that correspondence required to be issued to staff
- Client changed trading name during the process
On all of the above occasions we have listened to our client’s concerns, taken the time to understand their problem and have provided practical advice to resolve the issue.
Missing a Staging Date
For numerous reasons law firms have approached us because they have missed their Staging Date for Automatic Enrolment. In these instances we have moved quickly to set the client’s pension scheme up to ensure compliance with Automatic Enrolment duties. We have engaged with The Pensions Regulator to advise that although our client has missed their Staging Date they are now taking action to resolve the issue. It is up to The Pensions Regulator as to how they wish to respond to the disclosure. However our experience has shown that by disclosing any omissions early matters can often be resolved quickly. The most important aspect is honesty and being in a position to show clear intentions to provide and contribute to a work place pension for staff moving forward.
At The Cashroom we take a proactive approach and aim to contact all of our existing payroll clients in advance of their Pension Automatic Enrolment Staging Date to prevent Staging Dates being missed.
Failing to set up a Pension Scheme on a Pension Provider’s website
There have been instances where clients have struggled to complete the required information on their selected Pension Provider’s website. Our Pension Automatic Enrolment team have taken the time to discuss each practical step with clients by telephone. We have also sent step by step instructions by email in the form of screen shots to clients to assist with the set up.
In addition we have also carried out a large part of the administrative set up on our client’s Pension Provider’s website where this has been required.
Wishing to Postpone a Staging Date but Uncertain as to the Process
We have found that a number of clients have been uncertain of the postponement process or even unaware that this was an option. We discuss how postponement works with clients and also postpone our own set up work to coincide with a client’s postponed Staging Date. This ensures that a client is not billed for our work until the postponed date is reached.
A General Lack of Understanding of an Employer’s Automatic Enrolment Duties
There have been occasions where clients have contacted us in a panic on receiving notification from the Pensions Regulator of their Staging Date. We can provide a number of factual resources to clients which explain what Pension Automatic Enrolment means for them. We have worked closely with our friends at Armstrong Watson and have produced a detailed Frequently Asked Questions document on Pension Automatic Enrolment which is available for clients. We have also researched the best online guidance notes and drafted our own blog on Automatic Enrolment. Therefore any clients who need a little reassurance and some background information are well catered for.
Failure to Realise that a Declaration of Compliance required to be submitted
Often clients are under the impression that their Automatic Enrolment duties end when their work place pension has been set up. However the final step in the setup is the completion and submission of the Declaration of Compliance. We ensure that clients are made aware of the requirement to submit this document and we can also draft this on behalf of clients if required. The deadline for the submission of the document is 5 months after a client’s Staging Date and at the very least we will send a chaser email to a client who is submitting their own to ensure the document has been prepared in time.
Failure to Realise Correspondence required to be issued to Staff
During the early stages of setting up a Pension Scheme an employer requires to write to all staff and advise them of the work place pension. Employers must write to all staff and not just those who are eligible for enrolment to advise that the work place pension will be in place.
Staff who are eligible must receive detailed guidance on how Automatic Enrolment will apply to them. Staff who are not eligible must receive correspondence advising that they have the option to opt in to the pension scheme if they wish to. Some clients are unaware of the requirement to issue staff with correspondence and accordingly we have provided advice on this. We have also drafted correspondence for clients to issue to their staff when asked.
We have a detailed Frequently Asked Questions document which we issue to all clients which is available on request by emailing our Marketing Manager Emma O’Day. (Email:firstname.lastname@example.org)
For more information on our payroll and auto-enrolment service then please contact us today here –
We have also provided some links to useful references below:
An Essential Guide to Automatic Enrolment Link: https://www.thepensionsregulator.gov.uk/docs/the-essential-guide-for-automatic-enrolment.pdf
Detailed Guidance note for Employers Link: https://www.thepensionsregulator.gov.uk/docs/detailed-guidance-2.pdf
Full details on Compliance and Enforcement policy Link: https://www.thepensionsregulator.gov.uk/docs/pensions-reform-compliance-and-enforcement-policy.pdf