Monday 19 November 2018

Auto-enrol under way by 2021 - Varadkar

In the UK, where an auto-enrolment scheme exists, you must be over 22, not yet at state pension age, have a contract and earn more than £10,000 (€11,313). Stock image
In the UK, where an auto-enrolment scheme exists, you must be over 22, not yet at state pension age, have a contract and earn more than £10,000 (€11,313). Stock image

Anne-Marie Walsh

The Government will roll out a five-year pension reform plan in the near future, according to a Department of Employment Affairs and Social Protection spokeswoman.

She said the most fundamental reform measure in the plan would be the introduction of an automatic enrolment supplementary retirement savings system for workers without pensions, although they would be able to opt out.

A public consultation would be undertaken, she said, because designing the system correctly would be critical to its success.

She said the plan would also include measures to introduce a "total contributions approach" to the State pension for new pensioners, and simplify the supplementary pension landscape.

"The Taoiseach has recently confirmed his objective that first members would be enrolled under the new system in 2021," she said.

Scale

"This timeframe reflects the scale of such a programme and its importance as being the most fundamental reform of the Irish supplementary pension system in generations."

In the UK, where an auto-enrolment scheme exists, you must be over 22, not yet at state pension age, have a contract and earn more than £10,000 (€11,313).

However, if you earn less than £5,876 (€6,647) you won't be automatically enrolled, but your employer has to give you access to a pension to save into, although it doesn't have to contribute.

If you earn between this figure and £10,000, you have the right to opt into the scheme and your employer has to contribute.

You get tax relief on your contributions, which amount to up to 5pc, while the employer pays 3pc. You can opt out of the scheme and if you do this within a month of being enrolled, you will get your money back.

Employers must enrol workers every three years. It does not apply to the self-employed.

Irish Independent

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