The Pension Regulator issues a quarterly summary of the compliance and enforcement activities it initiates or completes in the period. The most recent summary can be found here. The financial press use this as a source for articles and the FT Adviser wrote about the use of County Court Judgements, (CCJs). (Please see the full article here).
The takeaway from all of this is quite simple; ignore The Pension Regulator at your peril; a fixed penalty can become a recurring penalty, either of which can become a CCJ! Trying to plead special circumstances is a forlorn hope, so get it done on time as absolution is not a concept the regulator is familiar with.
To put some context into the period between 1st October 2016 to the 31st December 2016, about 100,000 employers declared their compliance; The Pension Regulator issued 2,919 Fixed Penalty Notices, (at £400 a time), and 870 Escalating Penalty Notices, (at between £50 and £10,000 per day).
We have had some success as advisers getting schemes set up and compliant before any penalties are imposed, although we did not start until after the staging date. We would not recommend this approach as it is expensive for the employer, in terms of missed opportunities, higher costs and backdating contributions to avoid sanctions.
I am reminded of the old warning about projects; there are three parameters, cheapness, timeliness and quality; you can only have any two!
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The information contained is for guidance only and does not constitute financial advice. It is based on our understanding of UK legislation, whether proposed or in force, and market practice at the time of writing. Levels, bases and reliefs from taxation may be subject to change. Accordingly no responsibility can be assumed by Martin-Redman Partners its officers or employees, for any loss in connection with the content hereof and any such action or inaction.