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Setting up a business? What to do for automatic enrolment

Find out what you'll need to do for automatic enrolment if you employ staff for the first time.

What is automatic enrolment?

Under the Pensions Act 2008, every employer in the UK must put certain staff into a workplace pension and pay into it. This is called 'automatic enrolment'.

The Pensions Regulator is responsible for ensuring that all employers comply with workplace pension law. It's important that you understand what you'll need to do and prepare early.

Does automatic enrolment apply to me?

Whether you're an architect, a newsagent, have a personal care assistant or a nanny, you are an employer from the day your first member of staff started working for you and you have legal duties.

If you are employing staff for the first time, your legal duties for automatic enrolment begin on the day your first member of staff starts work. This is known as your duties start date. You should start preparing early in anticipation for this, so you know what you'll need to do.

How can I find out what I'll need to do?

What you need to do will depend on whether you have staff who need to be put into a pension scheme or not. All employers have duties, which include completing an online declaration of compliance to tell us what you've done for automatic enrolment.

Use our online tool to find out what you'll need to do for automatic enrolment.

Ongoing duties

Each time you pay your staff (including new starters), you must monitor their age and earnings to see if they need to be put into a pension scheme and how much you need to pay in. Find out more about your ongoing duties.

Understanding your costs

You may need to think about one-off costs to set up automatic enrolment, as well as the ongoing cost of paying money into the scheme and managing the process. Read more about understanding your costs.

Guidance and support

The Pensions Regulator will give you guidance and tools to help you meet your automatic enrolment duties. We will also contact you to remind you of your legal duties. You may also wish to speak with your business adviser, for example your accountant, to see what support they can give you.

Supporting resources

The essential guide to automatic enrolment Use our essential guide to help you prepare for automatic enrolment and understand your duties.

The essential guide to automatic enrolment (PDF, 675kb, 20 pages)

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