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The Employers’ Duties (Implementation) Regulations (Northern Ireland) 2010

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Statutory Rules of Northern Ireland

2010 No. 123

Pensions

The Employers’ Duties (Implementation) Regulations (Northern Ireland) 2010

Made

19th March 2010

Coming into operation

1st September 2012

The Department for Social Development makes the following Regulations in exercise of the powers conferred by sections 12, 29(2) and (4), 30(8) and 113(2) of the Pensions (No. 2) Act (Northern Ireland) 2008(1).

Citation, commencement and interpretation

1.—(1) These Regulations may be cited as the Employers’ Duties (Implementation) Regulations (Northern Ireland) 2010 and shall come into operation on 1st September 2012.

(2) In these Regulations—

“employer” has the meaning given by regulation 2(2);

“the employers’ duties” means sections 2 to 9;

HMRC” means Her Majesty’s Revenue and Customs;

PAYE income” has the meaning given in section 683(1) of the Income Tax (Earnings and Pensions) Act 2003(2);

“PAYE reference number” means a number issued by HMRC to a corresponding PAYE scheme, enabling an employer to pay over amounts deducted to HMRC;

“PAYE scheme” means the HMRC record allocated to an employer who—

(a)

employs, or

(b)

intends to employ,

a worker to whom PAYE income is payable;

“scheme administrator” has the same meaning as in section 270 of the Finance Act 2004(3);

“staging date” means the date when the employers’ duties apply to employers, prescribed in the third column of the Table;

“the Table” means the Table in regulation 4.

(3) In these Regulations any reference to a numbered section is a reference to the section of the Pensions (No. 2) Act (Northern Ireland) 2008 bearing that number.

Application of the employers’ duties to employers

2.—(1) Except where an employer satisfies the conditions for early automatic enrolment in regulation 3, the employers’ duties do not apply to employers described in the first column of the Table until the corresponding staging dates prescribed in the third column of the Table.

(2) For the purposes of these Regulations, an employer is a person within the meaning of section 70(7) who—

(a)has a PAYE scheme of any size, determined by the Regulator in accordance with paragraphs (3) and (4), or

(b)meets any other description contained in the first column of the Table (including having no PAYE scheme).

(3) The size of an employer’s PAYE scheme means the number of persons within that scheme.

(4) The number of persons within a PAYE scheme is based on the latest information available to the Regulator, as at 1st April 2012.

(5) Where—

(a)the employers’ duties first apply to an employer in accordance with the Table, and

(b)for any reason, an employer has another PAYE scheme (or schemes),

the employers’ duties apply to that employer in respect of the scheme (or schemes) mentioned in sub-paragraph (b) from the staging date applicable in relation to sub-paragraph (a) (and this is so even where the staging date mentioned in the Table for any such scheme (or schemes) is later than the staging date referred to in sub-paragraph (a)).

(6) Any employer who first pays PAYE income in respect of a worker between—

(a)1st April 2012, and

(b)up to (but not including) 1st April 2016,

is to be treated as a new employer in accordance with the relevant entry in the first column of the Table.

(7) Where paragraph (6) applies, the employers’ duties do not apply to such an employer until PAYE income is first payable in respect of any worker and then only in accordance with the Table.

(8) Where—

(a)an employer pays PAYE income in respect of any worker from 1st April 2016, and

(b)the employers’ duties do not already apply to that employer,

the employers’ duties apply to that employer from the day on which PAYE income is payable.

Early automatic enrolment

3.—(1) Where the conditions in paragraphs (3) and (4) are both satisfied, the employers’ duties apply to an employer from—

(a)any date in the third column of the Table which is earlier than the staging date corresponding to that employer’s description, or

(b)1st December 2012,

and, for the purposes of this regulation, that date is the early automatic enrolment date.

(2) Where the condition in paragraph (3) is satisfied but the condition in paragraph (4) is not satisfied, the employers’ duties apply to an employer from the staging date corresponding to that employer’s description, as prescribed in the third column of the Table.

(3) The first condition is that an employer must fall within any description in the first column of the Table.

(4) The second condition is that an employer has chosen an early automatic enrolment date (within the meaning of paragraph (1)) for the employers’ duties to apply, which is earlier than the date mentioned in the third column of the Table corresponding to that employer, and has—

(a)contacted a pension scheme which the employer considers could be used to comply with the employers’ duties;

(b)secured the agreement of the trustee or manager (or scheme administrator or provider) of that scheme that that scheme was to be used by the employer to comply with those duties from that early automatic enrolment date, and

(c)notified the Regulator accordingly in writing, at any time before either—

(i)where paragraph (1)(a) applies, the date specified in the second column of the Table corresponding to that earlier date, or

(ii)where paragraph (1)(b) applies, 1st November 2012.

Staging of the employers’ duties

4.—(1) The Table in this regulation sets out the application of the employers’ duties.

(2) Where a date prescribed in the second column of the Table falls on a day which is not a working day, that date is to be treated as the next working day (and for the purposes of this paragraph “working day” means a day which is not a Saturday, Sunday or public holiday).

Table

Employer (by PAYE scheme size or other description)Date before which notification to automatically enrol early must be sentStaging date
120,000 or more1st September 20121st October 2012
50,000-119,9991st October 20121st November 2012
30,000-49,9991st December 20121st January 2013
20,000-29,9991st January 20131st February 2013
10,000-19,9991st February 20131st March 2013
6,000-9,9991st March 20131st April 2013
4,100-5,9991st April 20131st May 2013
4,000-4,0991st May 20131st June 2013
3,000-3,9991st June 20131st July 2013
2,000-2,9991st July 20131st August 2013
1,250-1,9991st August 20131st September 2013
800-1,2491st September 20131st October 2013
500-7991st October 20131st November 2013
350-4991st December 20131st January 2014
250-3491st January 20141st February 2014
Less than 50 with the last 2 characters in their PAYE reference numbers 92, A1-A9, AA-AZ, B1-B9, BA-BY, M1-M9, MA-MZ, Z1-Z9 or ZA-ZZ1st February 20141st March 2014
240-2491st March 20141st April 2014
150-2391st April 20141st May 2014
90-1491st May 20141st June 2014
50-891st June 20141st July 2014
Less than 50 with the last 2 characters in their PAYE reference numbers BZ1st July 20141st August 2014
Less than 50 with the last 2 characters in their PAYE reference numbers 00-011st August 20141st September 2014
Less than 50 with the last 2 characters in their PAYE reference numbers 02-041st September 20141st October 2014
Less than 50 with the last 2 characters in their PAYE reference numbers 05-07, 0A-0Z, C1-C9, CA-CZ, D1-D9 or DA-DZ1st October 20141st November 2014
Less than 50 with the last 2 characters in their PAYE reference numbers 08-11, 1A-1Z, E1-E9 or EA-EZ1st December 20141st January 2015
Less than 50 with the last 2 characters in their PAYE reference numbers 12-15, 2A-2Z, F1-F9, FA-FZ, G1-G9 or GA-GZ1st January 20151st February 2015
Less than 50 with the last 2 characters in their PAYE reference numbers 16-20, 3A-3Z, H1-H9 or HA-HZ1st February 20151st March 2015
Less than 50 with the last 2 characters in their PAYE reference numbers I1-I9, IA-IZ1st March 20151st April 2015
Less than 50 with the last 2 characters in their PAYE reference numbers 21-25, 4A-4Z, J1-J9 or JA-JZ1st April 20151st May 2015
Less than 50 with the last 2 characters in their PAYE reference numbers 26-31, 5A-5Z, K1-K9 or KA-KZ1st May 20151st June 2015
Less than 50 with the last 2 characters in their PAYE reference numbers 32-38, 6A-6Z, L1-L9 or LA-LZ1st June 20151st July 2015
Less than 50 with the last 2 characters in their PAYE reference numbers N1-N9 or NA-NZ1st July 20151st August 2015
Less than 50 with the last 2 characters in their PAYE reference numbers 39-47, 7A-7Z, O1-O9, OA-OZ, P1-P9 or PA-PZ1st August 20151st September 2015
Less than 50 with the last 2 characters in their PAYE reference numbers 48-57, 8A-8Z, Q1-Q9, QA-QZ, R1-R9, RA-RZ, S1-S9, SA-SZ, T1-T9 or TA-TZ1st September 20151st October 2015
Less than 50 with the last 2 characters in their PAYE reference numbers 58-69, 9A-9Z, U1-U9, UA-UZ, V1-V9, VA-VZ, W1-W9, WA-WZ1st October 20151st November 2015
Less than 50 with the last 2 characters in their PAYE reference numbers 70-83, X1-X9, XA-XZ, Y1-Y9 or YA-YZ1st December 20151st January 2016
Less than 50 with the last 2 characters in their PAYE reference numbers 84-91 or 93-991st January 20161st February 2016
(a) Less than 50 unless otherwise described or (b) no PAYE scheme1st January 20161st February 2016
New employer (PAYE income first payable between 1st April 2012 and 31st March 2013)1st February 20161st March 2016
New employer (PAYE income first payable between 1st April 2013 and 31st December 2013)1st April 20161st May 2016
New employer (PAYE income first payable between 1st January 2014 and 30th September 2014)1st May 20161st June 2016
New employer (PAYE income first payable between 1st October 2014 and 30th June 2015)1st July 20161st August 2016
New employer (PAYE income first payable between 1st July 2015 and 31st March 2016)1st September 2016

Transitional periods for money purchase and personal pension schemes

5.  For the purposes of section 29 (transitional periods for money purchase and personal pension schemes)—

(a)the first transitional period is 4 years, beginning with the coming into operation of section 20 (quality requirement: UK money purchase schemes), and

(b)the second transitional period is one year, beginning with the end of the first transitional period.

Transitional period for defined benefits and hybrid schemes

6.  For the purposes of section 30 (transitional period for defined benefits and hybrid schemes), the transitional period for defined benefits and hybrid schemes is 4 years, beginning with the coming into operation of section 3 (automatic enrolment).

Sealed with the Official Seal of the Department for Social Development on 19th March 2010

(L.S.)

Anne McCleary

A senior officer of the Department for Social Development

EXPLANATORY NOTE

(This note is not part of the Regulations)

These Regulations make provision as to how sections 2 to 9 of the Pensions (No. 2) Act (Northern Ireland) 2008 (“the Act”) (“the employers’ duties”) apply to employers. Those duties include the duty on an employer (under section 3 of the Act) to make prescribed arrangements by which jobholders become active members of automatic enrolment pension schemes. These Regulations also set the transitional periods for money purchase and personal pension schemes and for defined benefits and hybrid schemes.

Regulation 2 makes provision for the application of the employers’ duties to employers.

Regulation 3 provides how the employers’ duties apply to an employer earlier than the date on which they otherwise would have applied to that employer, where an employer satisfies certain conditions.

Regulation 4 and the Table in it provide how the employers’ duties apply to employers over a period from 1st October 2012 to 1st September 2016.

Regulation 5 sets the length of the two transitional periods during which the quality requirement for UK money purchase and personal pension schemes is less than what is provided for in sections 20 and 26 of the Act. At the expiry of the two transitional periods, the quality requirement for those types of scheme will be what is provided for in the Act.

Regulation 6 prescribes the length of the transitional period for defined benefits and hybrid schemes. Where the conditions in section 30(2) of the Act are satisfied and continue to be satisfied during that transitional period, an employer is under a duty to make arrangements for jobholders to become active members of an automatic enrolment scheme from the end of that period.

An assessment of the cost to business of these Regulations is detailed in a Regulatory Impact Assessment, a copy of which has been laid in the Business Office and the Library of the Northern Ireland Assembly. Copies of the Assessment are available from the Department for Social Development, Social Security Policy and Legislation Division, Level 1, James House, 2-4 Cromac Avenue, Gasworks Business Park, Ormeau Road, Belfast BT7 2JA or from the website: http://www.dsdni.gov.uk/index/ssa/ssani-publications/ssani-pensions-publications.htm. A copy of the Assessment is also annexed to the Explanatory Memorandum which is available alongside this Statutory Rule on the website: http://www.opsi.gov.uk/legislation/northernireland/ni-srni.htm.

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