Employers warned over pension duties

The Pensions Regulator (TPR) has urged employers to ensure they are fully complying with their ongoing automatic enrolment duties after inspections highlighted a number of common errors.

The TPR warning follows a series of in-depth compliance inspections undertaken to check whether employers were complying with workplace pensions law. These inspections, which were carried out earlier this year, revealed a number of common mistakes in relation to calculating pensions contributions and communications to staff.

Key errors, which TPR noted were largely ‘technical in nature’, included using incorrect earnings thresholds. Employers were also urged to check the latest government guidance on maternity pay as miscalculating this can impact pensions contributions. In addition, when completing re-enrolment, which must be done every three years, employers are being encouraged to check systems and processes are up to date and running smoothly.

The TPR has warned that administrative errors can put staff at risk of missing out on their pensions and employers at risk of unintended non-compliance. Employers are therefore being urged not to skip important steps in complying with their ongoing duties and to consult information available on the regulator’s website in order to ensure they avoid the need to make costly backdated contributions or incur financial penalties.