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TPR issues six-figure fine for workplace pension failures

TPR has fined a business £350,000 for failing to comply with its pension duties.

TPR issues six-figure fine for workplace pension failures
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Employers are being warned not to put their head in the sand after one business ended up with a £350,000 fine for failing to fully comply with its pension duties.

Despite warnings from The Pensions Regulator (TPR), the unnamed employer, which has 5,000 staff, allowed an escalating penalty notice to grow before correctly re-enrolling staff into the company pension scheme and paying the right contributions.  

“This size of fine is rare as the vast majority of employers now consider automatic enrolment to be an everyday part of running their business and helping workers to save. However, this case is a stark warning that failing to address problems early can lead to hefty fines which could be avoided,” said TPR director of automatic enrolment Darren Ryder.

Following TPR’s intervention, the London-based company has now re-enrolled more than 40 staff and paid more than £100,000 of backdated pension contributions, as well as ensuring ongoing contributions are correctly calculated and paid.

The backdated payments, which are in addition to the fine, cover both the re-enrolment failure and incorrect contributions affecting more than 2,000 staff.

“This case also demonstrates it’s vital to carry out both ongoing duties and re-enrolment correctly,” said Mr Ryder.

“We will take action to ensure that not only are staff put into a pension, but they continue to receive the correct contributions on an ongoing basis, that those who opt out are re-enrolled correctly, and given their right to start saving.”

The anonymous case study is included in TPR’s quarterly compliance and enforcement bulletin, which also reports on the TPR's use of powers between April and June 2019.

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