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ASE Coronavirus Update- "Pensions Regulation"

Article Date: 16 April 2020

The Pension Regulator on 14th April 2020 issued guidance about automatic enrolment pension contributions.

The full details of the changes are set out below.

TPR publishes COVID-19 pension guidance for employers

A summary of what it sets out is noted below;

  1. The current crisis has not changed the employer’s duties and responsibilities with regard to auto enrolment pensions.


  1. Re-enrolment of staff cannot be postponed subject to a window of three months in which this can be done.


  1. New employers must enrol staff can postpone enrolment and therefore delay making pension contributions for a period of 3 months.


  1. The obligation to make the payments, both the employer and employee, is not affected by the current crisis.


  1. Notwithstanding staff can opt to increase or reduce contributions or indeed opt out of the scheme if they choose.


  1. The employer must not encourage or induce employees to opt out.


  1. The current crisis and Job Retention scheme does not require the payroll administrator to make any changes to existing pension arrangements or processes.


  1. The current scheme rules and contributions will apply albeit on the furlough salary.


  1. If an employer wishes to reduce the level of contribution from a level in excess of the statutory minimum there are important employee consultation requirements to be met if you have more than 50 employees. These usually centre upon consultation and a minimum period of 60 days.


  1. However, the Pension Regulator will not take action if these are breached provided;


  • Staff are furloughed and the decrease relates to furloughed staff only


  • The reduced level only applies during the furlough period


  • You write to staff to explain the changes

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If you have additional questions which have not been addressed above please contact Chris Cummings on 07896 117908 or by email