From 1st October 2012 new regulations come into force requiring all employers, from their staging date to automatically enrol their employees in a qualifying workplace pension scheme. To qualify, your scheme must have contributions of at least 8% of relevant earnings (between £5,564 and £42,475) including overtime and bonuses and a minimum 3% must come from the employer.
Employers’ responsibilities for automatic enrolment are to be introduced in phases over the next five years, according to the number of people they employ. Unless your practice has already received a ‘staging date’, the earliest deadline for ‘small employers’, (fewer than 30 PAYE members) will be June 2015 while new employers may have a staging date as late as February 2018.
You can still choose to bring your staging date forward and putting a pension scheme in place for your practice can make very good business sense. “Any pay increase in today’s market is welcome and combining it with a pension is very wise,” explains Richard Lishman of money4dentists. “For example, let’s say you’re planning a 4% increase for your staff; by putting 2% into a pension for them you’ll be offering an attractive perk and still giving them a 2% pay rise. Or you could offer to contribute 1% free and match the employee’s own contribution up to 2%. This way everybody wins.”
For more information on the automatic enrolment scheme, visit www.pensionsadvisoryservice.org.uk or for personalised financial advice for you and your practice contact finance specialists money4dentists on 0800 345 5060 (www.money4dentists.com)