LONDON, June 20, 2013 /PRNewswire/ --
With some pension providers unwilling to take on business if the employer is within 6 months of its staging date, SMEs need to act fast
Numerous SME employers do not realise that in order to meet their late 2013 staging deadlines, they should start planning now. For example, companies of between 500 and 799 employees face a 1st November 2013 staging date, while companies employing between 350 and 499 individuals have a 1st January 2014 deadline.
"Employers need to decide how they are going to address auto-enrolment and put a proper plan into place," says Peter Maher, head of financial services at Smith & Williamson, the accountancy and investment management group.
"This kind of project cannot be completed in a couple of months but a number of providers are unwilling to take on business if the employer is within six months of its staging date," he continued.
"In addition, options as to which qualifying workplace pensions scheme (QWPS) an employer can choose may become restricted if it does not act fast, as a number of providers have a limited capacity to accept new business."
"Ideally, employers should start planning at least 9 months to a year in advance. Even firms that currently operate a QWPS will need to review their schemes, make it available and explain it to all employees and make contributions on behalf of eligible employees. Failure to meet any of these criteria can result in hefty fines."
By necessity, this briefing can only provide a short overview and it is essential to seek professional advice before applying the contents of this article. No responsibility can be taken for any loss arising from action taken or refrained from on the basis of this publication. Details correct at time of writing.
Note to editors
Smith & Williamson is an independently owned professional and financial services group employing around 1,500 people. The group is a leading provider of investment management, financial advisory and accountancy services to private clients, professional practices and mid-to-large corporates. The group has eleven principal offices in the UK and Ireland; these are in London, Belfast, Birmingham, Bristol, Dublin, Glasgow, Guildford, Manchester, Salisbury, Southampton and Worcester.
Smith & Williamson Financial Services Limited
Authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority
SOURCE Smith & Williamson