Government consults on pensions auto-enrolment legislation

Proposals contained in a consultation from the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) could ease the pensions auto-enrolment process for employers.

Issues include streamlining the process for assessing which staff are eligible for pensions auto-enrolment. The government plans to allow employers to assess eligibility using information already collected by payroll systems.

The government has also suggested lifting the requirement for staff to be auto-enrolled if they voluntarily left their workplace pension in the 12 months before their employer’s staging date.

It is also asking wider questions about whether the process can be made easier for employers with an approach that meets the aims of auto-enrolment, or that have a defined benefit (DB) pension scheme.

Isabel France, a pensions partner at law firm Linklaters, said: “These regulations address points that have been made for a number of years. It is disappointing that the government did not take the opportunity to address them when they were first raised. However, these proposals are helpful.”

Alan Salamon, managing director of Corporate Pensions and Investment Advisory Services, said: “There’s nothing new in the consultation that people in the industry haven’t been saying.”

The consultation will be open to responses until 7 May.