Workplace Pensions

Workplace Pension

Starting from October 2012, approximately 11 million employees will begin to be automatically enrolled into a workplace pension. Larger employers will be affected first with small and medium sized employers following over the next 6 years.

A workplace pension is a way of saving for retirement arranged by the individual’s employer.

Employers will need to automatically enrol workers into a workplace pension who:

·         Are not already in a qualifying scheme

·         Are aged 22 and over

·         Under the state pension age

·         Earn more than £8,105 per annum (this  figure will be reviewed each year)

This is the first time that employers are required by law to enrol all eligible employees into a workplace pension.  The pension regulator will write to employers before the date they are required to start enrolling workers into a workplace pension.

The main reason that this is happening is that our population in the UK is getting older. 100 years ago there were approximately 10 working people for every pensioner. However this is now closer to 3 working people to each pensioner. Life expectancy is also increasing in the UK therefore people are not saving the income they are likely to need when they retire.

The date workers need to be enrolled is related to the size of company they work for. The estimated time frames are as follows:

Large employers (250 workers or more) – Between October 2012 and February 2014

Medium employers (50 -249 employers) – Between April 2014 to April 2015

Small employers (49 staff or less) – Between June 2015 to April 2017

New employers (established after April 2012) – Between May 2017 to February 2018

Employers who chose to use Defined Benefit or Hybrid Schemes can delay their staging date until September 2017.

There is a minimum total percentage that has to be contributed which starts at 2% in October 2012 and rises to 8% with effect from October 2018.


Minimum total percentage that has to be contributed

1 Oct 2012 to 30 Sept 2017


1 Oct 2017 to 30 Sept 2018


1 Oct 2018 onwards



If you would like any assistance in this area please do not hesitate to contact us. Also there is useful information available at