The Pensions Regulator is poised to contact small and micro businesses to alert them of new regulations for staff.
The decision to write to more than 1.5 million businesses from the end of January is to ensure that all employees know by the summer the ‘staging date’ when they need to be ready to meet their automatic pension enrolment duties.
Research from the regulator has shown that significant numbers of small and micro employers do not know their staging dates.
The regulator already writes to employers 12 months ahead of their staging date as part of a countdown of communications to employers approaching automatic enrolment.
The new all-employer mail out is in addition to this regular activity and also asks employers to provide email contact details to the regulator so it can provide them with regular reminders and updates as their individual staging date approaches.
Executive director of automatic enrolment, Charles Counsell, said: “Automatic enrolment affects every employer in the UK and they need to take timely action to get ready.
“The roll out of automatic enrolment has so far been a success and this letter will ensure that by the summer all small and micros are clear about when their duties begin, enabling them to plan ahead.
“From the end of January, letters will be sent out on a gradual basis over a number of months, so employers should not worry if they don’t receive theirs straight away. In the meantime, all employers can look up their staging date on our website.”
More than five million workers have already been automatically enrolled by their employers.
Research indicates that workplace pensions are becoming the norm, with the majority of small and micro employers indicating that they believe it to be a ‘good idea’.
Writing to tell small and micros employers due to stage over the next three years exactly when they need to act aims to assist timely planning and reduce the number of employers leaving things to the last minute and risking non-compliance.
Charles added: “We know from our own research that more than one million employers will be seeking help on automatic enrolment.
“Our message for advisers is clear: be prepared for clients to approach you about automatic enrolment. Let your clients know to look out for a letter from The Pensions Regulator in the coming months.”