Employers who flout their automatic enrolment pension duties are being targeted with short-notice inspections by The Pensions Regulator (TPR).
TPR is using data to pinpoint specific employers up and down the country who are suspected of breaking the law, including those who fail to put staff into a pension scheme or who make no, or incorrect, pension contributions.
It is mandatory for employers to take part in the inspections – obstruction of an inspector and failing to provide information when required to do so are criminal offences. Non-compliance could also result in fines or court action.
TPR’s Director of Automatic Enrolment, Darren Ryder, said: “TPR is increasingly led by our data and intelligence streams which enable us to detect potential non-compliance and take swift action against individual employers. This allows us to target our resources in a very focused way as part of our role to protect pension savers.
“We know the vast majority of employers are doing the right thing for their staff, however there are a small minority who persistently ignore their responsibilities. They can expect a knock at the door from us and enforcement action.”
The inspections will start this week and continue over the summer across the UK. Previous rounds of spot checks targeted employers by region, from at-risk business sectors and from random test samples – as well as employers where there was evidence of non-compliance.
TPR will also be directly contacting other employers suspected of non-compliance by phone to validate the information held related to them meeting their duties, to ensure they are complying fully.
Notes for editors
TPR is the regulator of work-based pension schemes in the UK. Our statutory objectives are: to protect members’ benefits; to reduce the risk of calls on the Pension Protection Fund (PPF); to promote, and to improve understanding of, the good administration of work-based pension schemes; to maximise employer compliance with automatic enrolment duties; and to minimise any adverse impact on the sustainable growth of an employer (in relation to the exercise of TPR’s functions under Part 3 of the Pensions Act 2004 only).