Auto-enrolment—what types of scheme may be used?
Produced in partnership with Wyn Derbyshire of gunnercooke LLP
Auto-enrolment—what types of scheme may be used?

The following Pensions guidance note Produced in partnership with Wyn Derbyshire of gunnercooke LLP provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:

  • Auto-enrolment—what types of scheme may be used?
  • Qualifying schemes
  • Overseas schemes established in the EEA
  • Impact of Brexit
  • Defined benefit occupational pension schemes—quality requirements
  • Alternative quality requirements for defined benefit schemes
  • Defined contribution schemes—quality requirements
  • Hybrid schemes
  • Phasing in of minimum contribution levels
  • Certification requirements—defined benefit schemes
  • more

THIS PRACTICE NOTE APPLIES ONLY TO PENSION SCHEMES IN ENGLAND AND WALES

The statutory auto-enrolment regime requires employers to enrol workers automatically in a pension scheme that meets at least minimum standards (known as a ‘qualifying scheme’). In the case of a defined contribution scheme, those standards include mandatory employer and worker contributions of at least minimum amounts. Only workers who meet certain criteria need to be enrolled automatically (called eligible jobholders).

Employers should ensure that any scheme chosen to comply with the auto-enrolment requirements meets the minimum standards. The Pensions Regulator has issued detailed guidance to help employers comply with their duties under the auto-enrolment regime ('TPR Auto-enrolment Guidance'), including on the criteria that a scheme must meet to be a qualifying scheme.

Note that on 19 July 2017, the DWP published a consultation seeking input and evidence in order to test to what extent the alternative quality requirements for UK defined benefit schemes are working as intended. For further information, see ‘Alternative quality requirements for defined benefit schemes—Consultation on defined benefit alternative quality requirements’ below.

For further information on the auto-enrolment regime, see Practice Note: Auto-enrolment—an introduction.

For further information on categories of worker, see Practice Note: Auto-enrolment—who needs to be enrolled?

Qualifying schemes

As regards the type of pension scheme nominated by the employer for auto-enrolment purposes, the scheme must be a ‘qualifying