New FSB survey claims many small businesses are still confused by auto enrolment rules.

As a small business owner, are you clear about your role and responsibilities under the new workplace pensions rules? Do you fully understand the import of auto-enrolment?

Judging by some of the questions and queries we receive as accountants, we suspect the answer to that question is probably not. Yet the importance of this issue has never been more important, as more than a million small businesses will still need to enrol employees automatically into a workplace pension scheme over the course of the next two years.

Despite widespread government publicity campaigns and with the deadline rapidly approaching, a new survey has never the less found that half of employers who must set up a pension scheme for their staffs in the next two years are still confused about their responsibilities. The survey by the Federation of Small Businesses (FSB) found that 45 per cent of those asked were unclear on the rules. Worryingly 25 per cent of respondents to the survey also said that they feared that their businesses might not be able to cope with the extra costs involved in administering the scheme.

Because of the confusion, the FSB has welcomed the clarification and improved information on the website of the Pensions Regulator:

“Our message for small employers is auto-enrolment is coming and will affect your business – and the sooner you get to grips with what you need to do, the better off you will be,” said John Allan, FSB national chairman.

“Most of the businesses which have already set up a work place pension told us they found the process fairly straightforward, but we know many remain concerned about their ability to cope. These businesses should feel reassured that there is plenty of information and support available to help them through this process.”

The FSB also said that employees should pay attention to their rights, and ensure they are being given the appropriate pension provision and contributions.

If you are concerned about the new auto-enrolment qualifying scheme or have any other concerns relating to tax planning, business structures, book keeping, business planning and growth, raising finance and VAT registration, then call Steven Glicher accountants on 0161 485 8007 or email

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