Whilst some smaller UK employers and new companies are yet to reach their pensions automatic enrolment staging date, the largest companies are in the process of planning for the first cycle of automatic re-enrolment. Companies can choose to re-enrol three months before the third anniversary of their staging date. For those that went first in October 2012, that means that they can go live with re-enrolment from July 2015.
As a minimum, eligible job holders who opted out of automatic enrolment will need to be automatically re-enrolled. The employer may choose their re-enrolment date from any date that falls within a six month window, starting three months before the third anniversary of their original staging date and ending three months after that anniversary.
When carrying out the re-enrolment process, employers must follow the same processes that were required for time round. This includes:
- selecting a re-enrolment date that falls within the six month window;
- identifying eligible job holders and re-enrolling them;
- writing to them within six weeks of the chosen re-enrolment date; and
- completing a re-declaration of compliance by no later than two months after the re-enrolment date.
Some employers who had to rush through the process first time round may take the opportunity to review their approach and make system improvements. There has been a lot of change in UK pensions over the last three years and so a fresh look at automatic enrolment compliance may be very sensible.