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The staging dates for automatic pension enrolment for employers employing less than 50 employees started on 1 June 2015.
The staging period will run until 1 April 2017. Employers employing more than 50 employees will already have had their staging date to automatically enrol their employees into pension schemes.
The employer pension reforms came into force on 30 June 2012 and require employers to, from their staging date, automatically enrol eligible workers into a pension scheme unless the employee is already a member of a qualifying pension scheme. This pension scheme will require contributions from both the employer and the employee. The employee has the right to opt out of the automatic enrolment, however the employer must re-enrol an opted out employee every three years.
Employers should be aware of their staging dates and if necessary take advice on the relevant legal duties. Employers should also be aware that there are consultation requirements in certain circumstances when making changes to existing pension schemes, and should seek further advice on this if applicable.