You may have heard about changes to pensions at work. The changes mean that all employers will have to offer their workers a chance to join a pension scheme.
This means that our flexible employees who meet certain eligibility criteria relating to age and earnings are required to be automatically enrolled into a pension scheme at the relevant time so that you can start saving towards your retirement.
Exactly when this takes place is determined by a staging date. That date is based upon the size and nature of the organisation’s workforce.
Our staging date is 1 August 2017, but we will be applying a 3 month postponement period so that we will not commence automatic enrolment of eligible Flexible Employees until 1 November 2017. Before that date (but no earlier than 1 August 2017) or if you are not eligible for automatic enrolment, you may still ask to join the scheme.
Step Ahead have chosen NEST as the scheme for our flexible employees. We chose NEST because it is an easy and low-cost way to put money aside for when you retire.
Automatic enrolment is a legal requirement for all eligible employees. However, those who are auto-enrolled and decide they do not want to be a member of the scheme are able to opt out in the first month. Members may also cease membership at any time thereafter. You must, however, be automatically enrolled first before you can opt out. Please do not write to tell us that you wish to opt out of the scheme before we have notified you that you are being automatically enrolled or are automatically involved as we cannot accept these opt outs. Those who are enrolled, should they decide to opt out of the scheme, shall receive details of how this may be done at the relevant time.
We will write to flexible employees individually nearer the time to let them know more about the scheme and how this affects them.
Note: If you work for us as a contractor through an umbrella company and taxed under PAYE, you will not be included in Step Ahead’s pension scheme. However, your umbrella company will have similar obligations towards you from their own staging date. And, if you are genuinely self-employed, you will not be included in the new pension requirements at all.
What is Pensions Auto-Enrolment?
You may have heard about changes to pensions at work. Those changes mean that all employers are required to offer a workplace pension scheme.
Step Ahead will be enrolling workers into the NEST pension scheme.
You will be automatically-enrolled into the scheme if, after working for 12 weeks, you meet certain eligibility criteria relating to your working status, age and earnings.
Automatic enrolment is a legal requirement on us. So, if you meet the eligibility criteria, then you we must automatically enrol you at the relevant time.
When will Pensions Auto-Enrolment Start?
As Step Ahead will be applying the permitted postponement period, the earliest date on which we will commence automatic enrolment will be 1 November 2017.
If you are eligible on that date, we shall automatically enrol you on that date. We will otherwise automatically enrol you 3 months after you first become eligible.
However, our obligation to offer a workplace pension scheme commences from 1 August 2017 and you may request to join the scheme from that date, including if you do not meet the eligibility criteria for auto-enrolment but meet certain other criteria.
For further information regarding the Pension Auto-Enrolment, please visit our FAQ Section under the ‘Training & Benefits (including Pensions)’ tab at http://www.stepahead.co.uk/information/training-benefits-pensions/