Tuesday, 25 September 2012
AUTO-ENROLMENT into your pension schemes
From October 2012, employers will start to automatically enrol all staff into a “qualifying workplace pension scheme”. This is being done incrementally, with the biggest employers affected first. UNISON has produced a briefing at www.unison.org.uk/acrobat/14625.docx which explains what this involves, so please read it. Publicity material and bargaining and organising guidance will be produced shortly, and the government has also started a publicity campaign.
Pensions auto-enrolment provides branches with a massive opportunity for recruitment and organising, especially in sectors where many workers are not in a scheme.
The “at a glance” key points are as follows:
· All employees paying income tax and aged between 22 and State Pension Age are affected.
· From the 1 October 2012 the very largest employers will have to ensure that eligible staff are automatically enrolled into a qualifying workplace pension scheme
· By February 2018 all employers should be operating pensions auto-enrolment
· Most forms of defined benefit pension schemes are qualifying schemes – as long as they are open to new recruits. This includes the LGPS and NHSPS
· Employers using a defined contribution pension scheme must pay “minimum contributions” - 1% for employers rising to 3% from October 2018. Employees initially pay 1%, rising to least 5% (effectively 4% with tax relief applied) from October 2018
· Staff will still be able to opt-out of the pension scheme should they wish to
· Employers will have to automatically re-enrol eligible staff into a qualifying pension scheme at 3 yearly intervals
· The Local Government and NHS Pension Schemes will remain the default qualifying schemes for staff potentially eligible to join them
· Employers must register their qualifying schemes with the Pensions Regulator and inform staff of pensions auto-enrolment. They must not encourage staff to opt-out or discriminate against staff who join a scheme (or those who decide not to).
By Branch Office - September 25, 2012
The Government is currently consulting on plans to allow universities and colleges in England to opt out of offering the local government pe...
Oxford City Council response to “Better Oxfordshire” proposal Councillor Bob Price, Leader of Oxford City Council, responds to the...
Members urged to join UNISON in responding to government consultation on proposals for longer private rent tenancies in England, by 26 Augu...