We all know how important financial planning for the future is, especially as the population of the United Kingdom is living longer than ever before. That’s why workplace pensions are so essential, and in recent years they’ve changed beyond all recognition.
As an employer you are now or soon will be duty bound to enrol your workers into a pension scheme, no matter how small or large your company is. Auto enrolment can seem very confusing, not to say time consuming, for business owners but the good news is that you don’t have to face it alone. We can help businesses of all sizes get on top of their auto enrolment pension provision, keeping HMRC happy and keeping their workers happy as well.
What is Auto Enrolment?
Having a reasonable pension pot is essential if a person wants to lead a full old age, yet too many people were failing to put aside necessary funds for the future. That is why the government introduced automatic enrolment pensions, making it compulsory for workers to enrol into a pension, and compulsory for employers to administrate this enrolment.
The scheme is already being phased in throughout the UK, and by 2018 every employer nationwide will be required to comply with the new regulations. Small businesses, who may not have the pension handling experience of larger companies, may be particularly affected, which is why it makes sense to get expert help.
It’s important not to be fooled by the word ‘automatic’; admission to the pension scheme is automatic for employees, but it’s anything but automatic for employers. Heavy fines can be handed out to businesses who fail to meet the required standards, as well as a reputational loss that can make it hard to attract high calibre employees to your company. It can be a lengthy process to implement effectively, and it’s recommended that companies start planning for auto-enrolment for up to a year before their scheme begins. It makes sense to get in touch with us as soon as possible, and we’re always happy to help.
How We Can Help
Calling on our wealth of experience, both as accountants and in business, we can find the pension solution that suits your unique needs, rather than trying to fit your requirements into one pre-determined suggestion. It’s a truly bespoke solution that will address the following elements relating to automatic enrolment:
- Discussing the pension options with you and your staff
- Discussing pension providers for your company, while not offering Financial Advice
- Setting up the auto-enrolment pension scheme
- Enrolling staff in the scheme
- Controlling and automating deductions from payroll
- Advising on employer contributions
- Explaining the tax benefits that can be obtained from auto-enrolment
- Submitting your ‘certificate of compliance’
Setting up the auto-enrolment is just the beginning, but we’ll be alongside you ready to help every step of the way. We’ll monitor the progress of the scheme, and suggest improvements that could be made for the benefit of your business and your employees. Our aim is to make auto-enrolment as simple as can be for you and your workers.
Cutting Through the Pensions Red Tape
Running a business is hard work, and every minute is important. At Mercian Accountants, we appreciate that after all our principals have started and developed businesses themselves. Dealing with the red tape and paperwork associated with the new auto-enrolment registration could take up time that could be better spent running your business, but when you have our help you’ll find that it takes no time at all.
Many companies find the terminology surrounding pension provision confusing, but we’ll explain it in clear terms that make it easy to understand. Our plain English policy means that we’ll explain the auto-enrolment scheme and its ramifications to both you and your workers.
We believe in forging strong and lasting relationships with our clients, so we’re always available to answer any questions you may have, whether they’re about your workplace pension scheme, bookkeeping, end of year tax returns, or any of our other comprehensive accountancy solutions.
Does Auto Enrolment Affect Me?
It’s common for business owners to ask whether the auto-enrolment pension legislation affects them, but the quick answer is that if you have employees then yes it does. All employers have to enrol their employees onto a suitable pension scheme, whether they have one or one thousand workers.
The date at which this must be done by is known as the ‘staging date’, and if you’re not sure when your staging date is, simply contact us with details of your company, including your PAYE reference, and we can find the date for you. Of course, it’s always better to plan ahead, so the sooner you start planning your auto-enrolment scheme the more seamless the transition will be.
Which Pension Scheme?
One of the choices that you’ll have to make will be which pension scheme to select as your designated auto-enrolment provider. Once again this can seem confusing to those who have little experience in the pension market, and there are a wide variety of companies who are all competing for the services of a business like yours. While we don’t offer Financial Advice, our accountants can take you through the range of choices, explaining the benefits and downsides of each one in turn. You’ll be able to make an informed choice that will result in a brighter future for you and your workforce.
Setting up an auto-enrolment pension scheme can seem incredibly daunting, but with Mercian Accountants by your side the process will be simple, quick and efficient. Working in partnership with you, we’ll help you make a great choice, and keep the jargon and red tape at bay.