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When will my business Stage for Auto Enrolment?

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Your staging date is the date the new duties come into force for your business. It’s the date from when automatic enrolment activities must become ‘business as usual’, just like real-time PAYE.

You can find out your staging date using the Pension Regulators Calculator or this link provides a quick summary by number of employees.

Auto Enrolment isn’t easy, there is a lot to do before you Stage, here is a checklist (Pension Regulator) of activities you should do 6 months before Staging

If you fail to automatically enrol your workers into a pension scheme you could face fines of up to £2,500 per day for employers with 50-249 people in their PAYE scheme, or up £10,000 if you have more than 250 people.

Modified staging dates for some small employers

  • You can change your staging date to a later date if you:
  • had fewer than 50 staff on 1 April 2012, and
  • had, or were part of, a PAYE scheme that has more than 50 people in it.

Bringing your staging date forward

All employers are able to bring their staging date forward. You may choose to do this to align it with other business practices, like the start of your financial year.

Or you might have several employers in a corporate group and want to align the smaller employers’ staging dates with the largest. If you plan to do this, you must notify The Pensions Regulator, which you can do online.

You can postpone assessing your workforce for up to 3 months, but this does not change your staging date and staff can choose to opt in during the postponement period.

A survey by AutoenrolSME found that 6 out 10 businesses can’t cope with the preparation for Auto Enrolment and hired additional staff to manage the process!

A Poll in April 2014 of 200 businesses with 62 to 249 employees found:

63% of the employers didn’t know when their staging date was!

Staging Dates
At the moment 10,000 businesses a month are staging but as you can see from the chart this is going to massively increase and as it takes months of preparation many smaller employers need to start preparing now.
steve@bicknells.net

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