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Postponement

You can choose to delay working out who to put into a pension scheme for up to three months for some or all of your personal care assistants. This is known as postponement. You must write to your personal care assistant to tell them what you are doing and how automatic enrolment applies to them.

Why you might postpone

One of the main reasons you might decide to delay working out who to put into a pension scheme is if you have a temporary personal care assistant who you know will stop working for you within three months. You can also use it for a personal care assistant who begins work on a probationary period or to align automatic enrolment with your other business processes, such as monthly payroll or tax returns. But you can choose to use postponement for any other business reason.

When you can postpone

You can only postpone automatic enrolment from:

  • your staging date
  • your personal care assistant's first day of employment
  • the date your personal care assistant first meets the age and earnings criteria to be put into a pension scheme that you also pay into.

Remember, if you use postponement on your staging date it only changes the day on which you need to assess your personal care assistant, it doesn’t change your staging date or your declaration of compliance deadline.

Your guide to the key things to know

Your guide to postponement (PDF, 174kb, 2 pages)

How to use postponement

You must write to your personal care assistant individually to tell them that you have delayed working out who to put into a scheme and how automatic enrolment applies to them. You will have six weeks to write to them from the date after postponement starts. There’s no need to tell us that you’ve decided to use postponement.

You can postpone for up to three months. You can postpone as many or as few personal care assistants as you like and the postponement period doesn’t have to be the same length for everyone.

Postponement letter template

Use our postponement letter template to help you write to your personal care assistant as required by law. You can tailor the letter template to your needs.

Postponement letter template for all employees (DOC, 35kb, 1 page)

Postponement letter template in other languages

You can find translated versions of our postponement letter template – including Bulgarian, Polish and Romanian versions – in automatic enrolment letter templates.

At the end of the postponement period

On the last day of the postponement period, you must assess your personal care assistant to work out whether they meet the age and earnings criteria to be put into a pension scheme. If they do, you must put them into a pension scheme straight away and pay into it. You cannot apply a further period of postponement for this person, even if you postponed for less than the three months allowed. However, if your personal care assistant does not meet the age and earnings criteria to be put into a pension scheme, you can use postponement again.

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