What is it? Changes to pensions law will require private-sector employers to automatically enrol workers into a qualifying pension scheme and make contributions on their behalf.
When? The new employer duties will be introduced in stages over four years, starting on 1 October, 2012. Employers will be given a "staging date" from when their duties will apply.
Who will it affect? Employers with at least one worker.
Who will qualify? An eligible employee is aged between 22 and state pension age, working in the UK and earning above a set level (a proposed £7,474).
Can workers opt out? Yes. Employees can choose not to take part and give notice during the opt-out period.
Is auto enrolment suitable for all staff? Consultancy Creative Benefits believes auto enrolment is not appropriate for 20 per cent of employees, particularly where a new pension replaces the guaranteed income element of pension credit.
What do businesses need to do now? Assess your workforce to find out who is eligible. If you have an automatic enrolment duty you must choose a qualifying pension scheme. You may be able to use an existing scheme or set up a new one. Alternatively, there is the National Employment Savings Trust. Find out when your staging date is likely to be so you can be ready. Check your date on the Pensions Regulator website www.tpr.gov.uk/staging.
Where can I find out more? www.tpr.gov.uk,