Ignoring Auto Enrolment could lead to big fines
Pensions Regulator fines Johnsons Shoes Company £42,000 for failing to meet enrolment deadline
The Johnsons Shoes Company fine shows how ignoring auto-enrolment duties is ill-advised. Ignoring The Pensions Regulator ended up costing the company £42,400!
In its case summary The Pensions Regulator stated that the company had a ‘staging date of 1 May 2014, which was the date their automatic enrolment duties started to apply. They were due to complete their declaration of compliance – where an employer confirms to us that they’ve met their duties – by 30 September 2014, but failed to meet the deadline. As a result, we couldn’t be satisfied they had met their automatic enrolment duties by enrolling all eligible staff into a pension scheme from the staging date, paying contributions into it, and writing to staff explaining how automatic enrolment affected them.
‘We had regularly attempted to communicate with Johnsons to educate and enable them to meet their duties, but their lack of action led us to use a number of our enforcement powers.’
These enforcement powers included a fixed penalty notice, a daily fine (escalating penalty notice) and county court action to recover the debt which, including costs, totalled £42,400. The case highlights the importance of engagement with the regulator.