25th October 2017
1 in 4 employers missed their staging date to enrol staff into a workplace pension during Q3 2017, according to Aviva.
Auto-enrolment rules require employers to prioritise pensions as soon as they take on new employees.
But Aviva's research suggests firms are becoming complacent with their workplace pension duties, with the number of applications made after the deadline rising 7% on Q2 2017.
56% of employers left auto-enrolment duties to the last minute, resulting in 25% of workplace pensions set up in the month of staging and 31% a month prior to staging.
Firms who fail to meet their staging date run the risk of being fined £400 by The Pension Regulator, which collected £1.92 million from 4,800 fines in the second quarter of 2017.
Andy Beswick, managing director of SME solutions at Aviva, said:
"It's clear there has been an increase in the proportion of companies missing their deadline, but employers need to understand the implications.
"Not only could they be fined but not all pension providers will take on ‘late stagers' so they are limiting their choice.
"Start-ups, or sole traders beginning to take on staff, must put their pension scheme in place as soon as they hire their first employee."
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